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THE INSIDE TRACK | MORNING BRIEFING

Original Titans Were Not Exactly Giants of the Game

November 26, 1998|MAL FLORENCE

The Tennessee Oilers will be called the Titans next year and Steve Jacobson of Newsday recalled the original Titans, a forgettable New York team playing in the American Football League in the 1960s and owned by a windbag named Harry Wismer.

"The Titans had no media guides in their three years," Jacobson said. "For press releases, someone would go to stores that sold mimeograph machines, ask to test the equipment and never buy."

According to Jacobson, Wismer would meet a familiar face in an elevator and say, "Congratulations." Sometimes he'd have it right.

"How did you know?" the face would say.

And Wismer would respond, "I keep up."

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Trivia time: When did USC play its first Thanksgiving Day football game in this century?

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Boys will be boys: Hubert Mizell of the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, on the player melee before the kickoff of Saturday's Florida-Florida State game in Tallahassee:

"Dozens of opposing athletes engaged in nauseating, group-on-group midfield clashes of uniformed bodies. Looking even more stupid and classless than the daily cesspool of guests on the Jerry Springer show."

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Computer crisis: Barry Horn in the Dallas Morning News: "Here's hoping that UCLA loses to Miami, Kansas State falls to [Texas] A&M, and Tennessee loses in the Southeastern Conference championship game.

"Let's see what the BCS computer spits out with the Bruins, Wildcats, Vols, Aggies, Florida State, Ohio State, Arizona and Notre Dame all with one loss [if the Irish beat USC]. And that doesn't take into account undefeated Tulane."

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Explosive player: Bernie Miklasz in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: "Slap-hitting, iron-handed Jose Offerman gets a four-year, $26-million contract from the Boston Red Sox?

"He's a career .278 hitter, with 183 errors in 969 major league games. He technically plays second base, but ground balls are grenades to him."

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Courageous player: Gary Marshall received a 1999 Lexus ES 300 on Monday for his hole in one during the Casa Colina Adaptive Sports Classic played at Industry Hills on Nov. 16. Remarkably, this is Marshall's second hole-in-one car in three months.

More remarkable, Marshall was born with one arm. He has played golf since he was 7.

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Gobbled up: Here's a salute to the Turkey Bowl, which was played in 1946. In case you forgot, Evansville (Ind.) beat Northern Illinois, 19-7.

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Looking back: On this day in 1949, No. 1 Notre Dame routed USC, 32-0, at South Bend.

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Trivia answer: 1900. The Trojans lost to Pomona, 11-0, at Washington Park, located at Washington and Grand.

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And finally: Atlanta Hawk Coach Lenny Wilkens, commenting to Steve Hummer of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on the NBA lockout:

"At first . . . a lot of the coaches' wives were happy that they'd have us around more. That's worn off a little. [The wives] are saying, 'Isn't it time you get going? You're spending too much time in the kitchen.' "

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