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THE INSIDE TRACK | MORNING BRIEFING

He Never Lost Knack for Saying the Wrong Thing

September 15, 2000|MAL FLORENCE

Dave Bliss, a former assistant basketball coach to Bob Knight at West Point, told this story on the "General" to Randy Galloway of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

It was in the late 1960s, and Knight's West Point gang of young assistant coaches from all the sports at Army had just finished a game of very rough pickup basketball.

On leaving the gym on this particular day, the weary group noticed a young female jogger huffing and puffing her way up a hill.

"Look at her," Knight said. "No matter how hard she tries, she'll never lose that fat."

"I know," answered Bill Parcells, then an Army assistant football coach. "That's my wife."

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Trivia time: Who was the first football player from one of the current Pacific 10 Conference schools to win the Heisman Trophy?

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Hoosier hoops: David Letterman on the "Top 10 Questions on the Indiana University Basketball Coach Application." A sampling:

* Do you have the proper disrespect for authority?

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* True or False: Everyone else in the world is an idiot, you're the only genius.

* Why do you want to be a coach, in 30 profanities or less."

Antagonists: "Monday Night Football" executive Don Ohlmeyer, to the Boston Globe on the New York-Boston rivalry:

"There has been bad blood since the trade of Babe Ruth. The two cities can't even agree on what color clam chowder should be."

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Considerate: Ugandan archer Margaret Tumusume showed up in Sydney without a bow and arrow. She was too poor to buy her own, so kind-hearted Australians raised $5,000 to outfit her.

Said David Whitley of the Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel: "Dream Teamer Gary Payton showed up without his entourage. A fund has been established to rent one to tide him over."

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Hoping he's exempt: Brazilian Armando Barcellos, on the swimming in Sydney Harbor in the Olympic triathlon: "There are 54 other competitors for the sharks to eat. I'm thin--they wouldn't like that."

In the interest of full disclosure, the last fatal shark attack in Sydney Harbor was in 1963.

Why not? Ted Miller in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer: "If UCLA beats No. 3 Michigan, it should be ranked No. 1 in the nation. What, elevate the No. 14 team to No. 1 past top-ranked Nebraska and No. 2 Florida State? What are you smoking?

"Well, what other team can say it beat two No. 3 teams this year?"

Looking back: On this day in 1978, the Dodgers became the first major league club to pass the 3 million mark in home attendance.

And on the same day: Also on Sept. 15, 1978, Muhammad Ali became the first three-time heavyweight boxing champion with a unanimous 15-round decision over Leon Spinks at the Superdome in New Orleans.

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Trivia answer: Quarterback Terry Baker of Oregon State in 1962.

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And finally: Jerry Greene in the Orlando Sentinel: "At AOL, 115,000 voters graded Dennis Miller's efforts Monday night. He got an 'A' from 16.1%--and a 'D' from 47.7%. (AOL wouldn't let us give him an 'F.')

"And the 'D' grade was up from 42.9% last week."

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