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THE INSIDE TRACK | Morning Briefing

He's Businesslike, and New Cowboy Coach Is No Bozo

July 26, 1998|MARK HEISLER

Dallas Cowboy Coach Chan Gailey is impressing his new players with his businesslike approach, a departure from his predecessor, Barry Switzer, who wasn't businesslike and, according to many, couldn't coach.

"In the real world, for Barry and for everybody concerned, if I could orchestrate it perfectly, we'd have made the change after we won the Super Bowl in Phoenix [in 1996]," owner Jerry Jones says. "That's when you could have said, 'Hey, let's sit down, let's take a look at this long term.' That's having the benefit of hindsight, of course."

Gailey is given to bland statements like, "My job is to get this football team ready, and that's where my mind is right now."

After the madcap Switzer, that's a pleasant change. Notes Jim Reeves of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:

"At least he didn't stop the news conference to say somebody in the audience looked like Son of Sam. And there was absolutely no threat of Gailey grabbing Jones around the neck and screaming, 'We gonna do it, baybee!' in Jerry's ear."

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Trivia time: Casey Stengel of the New York Yankees won 10 pennants from 1949 to 1960. Who was the only other American League manager to win in that time?

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Good will, bad ratings: Ted Turner's attempt to foster world peace through athletics is a hard sell. The first three Goodwill Games lost $109 million and this year's are expected to take a bath too.

However, Steve Hummer of the Atlanta Constitution notes they have one edge over the Olympics, in that Turner "is way more cool than Juan Antonio Samaranch."

Of course, Samaranch sticks around for his games. Turner planned to fly to his Montana ranch after the first weekend and watch on TV.

"It gives me a chance to see the production," he said. "I'm not hands-on that much. I put my hands on a knife and fork three times a day. What else I put my hands on, I can't talk about. No other women, that's for sure."

CoreStates, we hardly knew ye: Philadelphia's two-year-old CoreStates Center has been renamed the First Union Center, after a bank merger.

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Marked down: Tiger Woods, who has a $40-million deal with Nike, doesn't seem to be moving many products.

"To tell you the truth, we did not have people busting down our doors for it," Jumbo Sports store manager Todd West told the Jacksonville (Fla.) Times-Union. "The product is not grunge enough for kids, and it's too flashy for older people. Nike is trying to market something that there is no market for."

Yon Hammel, manager of Sun Golf in Jacksonville, said the line was too expensive (shirts up to $54, shoes up to $250) and sold only when he marked down the items.

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Trivia answer: Al Lopez, with the Cleveland Indians in 1954 and the Chicago White Sox in 1959.

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And finally: Roland Frittoli, owner of Peron, Marseille's oldest restaurant, on the impact of the World Cup: "Football fans are a sandwich and pizza crowd. They live at camping sites and cook their own food. Nothing to earn there."

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