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THE INSIDE TRACK | Morning Briefing

Sosa Raised Fed Chief's Interest Rate

September 24, 1998|MAL FLORENCE

Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan may have as good a grasp on baseball as he does on economics.

As a Senate Budget Committee hearing was about to begin, Greenspan was asked by reporters if he would stop by the press table first, a rarity for him. But this time, he considered the offer, and gave this unexpected assessment:

"I seriously question whether Sammy Sosa is correct in conceding he will not win."

Sosa had said Tuesday that he thought St. Louis Cardinal first baseman Mark McGwire "will finish a little bit higher" in their head-to-head race to set a season home run record.

On Wednesday, about 90 minutes after Greenspan's remark, Sosa hit his 64th homer in the fifth inning of a game against the Brewers in Milwaukee. In the sixth, he bounced his 65th off the center-field bleachers, tying McGwire.

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Trivia time: Who holds the NCAA Division I-A record for completions in a game?

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Recognition: Rookie guard Chris Liwienski, a member of the Minnesota Vikings' practice squad, is, naturally, called "Monica" by his teammates.

He doesn't sound upset. "It's kind of cool," he said. "Now people know how to pronounce my name."

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Ode to FloJo: Bernie Lincicome of the Chicago Tribune, writing on the late Florence Griffith Joyner:

"Dedicated young women and chiseled young men still bolt from starting blocks and grind toward finish lines, but none smile, all white teeth and flowing hair and transparent joy, at the tape the way FloJo did.

"None of them seem to glide without effort, as if feet and earth are whispering love to each other."

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Transformation: University of Miami defensive coordinator Bill Miller, discussing UCLA quarterback Cade McNown with D.L. Cummings of the Miami Herald:

"I've talked to a couple of coaches who have [coached] against him and they all said the same thing: When you walk out on the field for pregame, he may not look like much, but when he's back there in the pocket, he looks awesome."

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Looking back: On this day in 1995, Europe rallied to upset the United States and win the Ryder Cup, 14 1/2 to 13 1/2, at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, N.Y.

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Trivia answer: Rusty LaRue of Wake Forest with 55 against Duke on Oct. 28, 1995.

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And finally: USC officials are planning to ask Mark McGwire to appear at the USC-Notre Dame game Nov. 28 at the Coliseum--if it works into McGwire's off-season schedule.

McGwire, a former Trojan baseball star, would be asked to take part in the coin flip with his son, Matt.

Comment from Steve Rosenbloom of the Chicago Tribune: "USC is still trying to match that cheap trick with the green jerseys that the Irish pulled 20 [actually 21] years ago."

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