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NFL DAILY REPORT / AROUND THE LEAGUE

Gruden Apologizes for DUI Charge

October 22, 1998|Associated Press

Oakland Raider Coach Jon Gruden, charged with driving under the influence and facing possible punishment by the NFL, publicly apologized Wednesday for the incident.

Gruden, 35, the youngest head coach in the league, was arrested while driving home a week ago from his team's victory over the San Diego Chargers.

"I've apologized to the team. I've apologized to the Raiders organization. And I'd like to apologize to Raiders fans," Gruden said. "I've learned something."

A blood test taken at the time of his arrest showed he had a blood-alcohol level of .10, a spokeswoman for the Alameda County district attorney's office said. The legal limit is .08.

Gruden is due to appear for arraignment on Nov. 6 in Alameda County Superior Court in Pleasanton.

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The league has admitted that officials blew two holding calls in Sunday's Indianapolis Colts-San Francisco game which negated two 49ers turnovers.

The two penalties kept alive San Francisco touchdown drives late in the second quarter, cutting a 21-3 Indianapolis lead to 21-17 by halftime. The 49ers won, 34-31.

In a rare move, the NFL announced that the league's officiating department has determined Colt defenders did not hold San Francisco wide receiver Terrell Owens on two key plays, spokesman Greg Aiello said.

Meanwhile, the 49ers brought former general manager John McVay out of retirement to work as a special assistant.

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Tampa Bay linebacker Hardy Nickerson has been fined $7,500 for spitting on Carolina fullback William Floyd during the third quarter of the Buccaneers' victory Sunday. Nickerson was penalized 15 yards. . . . Jeff Danish, a free-agent rookie injured in an hazing incident during training camp, filed a $650,000 suit against the New Orleans Saints in Madison, Wis. . . . Tennessee Oiler receiver Yancey Thigpen hyperextended his left knee during practice and was carted off the field. . . . The San Diego Chargers put cornerback Dwayne Harper on injured reserve because of a neck injury. Harper suffered a fracture in his neck in the season opener against Buffalo. . . . Jason Whitlock, columnist for the Kansas City Star, was suspended pending an investigation into allegations he heckled fans during the Kansas City-New England game on Oct. 11.

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