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THE INSIDE TRACK | MORNING BRIEFING

Venus Does Her Mopping Up on the Court

January 22, 1998|SHAV GLICK

Venus Williams shows no fear on the tennis court, even against the world's best players, but she says she lives in terror of housework.

"I found out that when I do things like fold clothes and wash dishes, my back starts hurting," she said. "I tried [working] around the house, but I just can't do it because, I'm not kidding, I have back problems when I start doing that stuff."

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Trivia time: How many players have been Super Bowl MVP more than once?

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Intelligent too: Some of the world's greatest track and field athletes, from Wilma Rudolph, Parry O'Brien and Don Bragg to Sergei Bubka, Carl Lewis and Jackie Joyner-Kersee have performed in the L.A. Invitational indoor track meet in the last 37 years, but on Feb. 7 in the Sports Arena there will be a first.

Becky Spies, a miler from Villanova, will be the first Rhodes scholar to compete.

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Changing times: From Joe Davidson of the Sacramento Bee: "It used to be where you watched teams walk into the [high school] gym and you looked at their school colors. Now you look to see [which shoe company] they're sponsored by."

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Changing names: When a street in Boston was renamed Tony DeMarco Way in honor of the former welterweight champion, a friend of DeMarco's predicted that one day there might be two streets renamed.

"There'll be a street for Don King called One Way and one for Mike Tyson called Dead End," said Al Valenti, grandson of DeMarco's promoter, Rip Valenti.

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Looking back: On this day in 1984, Marcus Allen ran for 191 yards and two touchdowns as the Los Angeles Raiders defeated the Washington Redskins, 38-9.

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Easy answer: A recent poll in the Toronto Sun asked readers where the Raptors most needed help, at guard, forward or center. Twenty-two responses said, "All of the above."

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Big Apple critique: From Phil Mushnick of the New York Post: "With NFL expansion, the NFL's networks are lousy with announcers, most of them lousy."

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How bad is bad? Buffalo Bill linebacker Chris Spielman, a workaholic in practice, was asked how it felt to go more than two months without working out while he recuperated from a neck injury:

"It was like the pope not being allowed to say Mass."

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In the resume: Jim Mora, recently hired as coach of the Indianapolis Colts, hates to be reminded of his profanity-filled outburst after one losing effort with the New Orleans Saints.

"It is a moment that I feel poorly about," Mora says. "I've seen it on TV a number of times. Every time, I see it I cringe. I want to crawl under the covers and hide."

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Trivia answer: Three: Joe Montana, three times; Terry Bradshaw and Bart Starr, twice.

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And finally: Former Laker Vlade Divac, on his chances of getting a $10-million contract next year when he becomes a free agent:

"My dad says, 'You're going to play basketball for [that] much money? That's ridiculous."

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