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The Inside Track | MORNING BRIEFING

For at Least One Week, Nickname Gets a Bye

November 24, 2001|Mal Florence

The New York Jets, who have the weekend off, are calling themselves "Shrek" after the animated green ogre of film fame.

"That's what we are--ugly," said Coach Herman Edwards, who puts Shrek up on the screen during team meetings after wins.

Said running back Curtis Martin: "We're the big green monster that everybody calls ugly. We're fine with that. As long as it's a W, we can be the ugliest thing on the planet and it wouldn't make any difference."

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

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Bon appetit: Bob St. Clair, San Francisco 49ers' Hall of Fame offensive tackle, was renowned for his love of raw meat. He said he developed a taste for it when his grandmother started feeding him scraps in her kitchen.

"I've eaten raw meat all my life," he said. "My favorite is raw liver."

On Thanksgiving, he said, "I will cook the turkey, but I'll eat it rare."

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The wacky WAC: Erik Matuszewski of Bloomberg News: "If frequent-flier miles were added to college football's national championship formula, the Western Athletic Conference might have a team in this year's title game.

"WAC teams have the toughest travel schedules in the country, logging more than 150,000 miles over four time zones during a three-month stretch. By comparison, teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference will travel about 36,000 miles this season and schools from the Big Ten will log just under 60,000 miles."

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Excess: Rudy Martzke of USA Today reports that veteran Fox television announcer John Madden had his annual turducken dinner for friends the evening before his Thanksgiving Day NFL telecast. Turducken?

That's right--chicken stuffed in duck stuffed in turkey. We'd just settle for the turkey.

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Rapid transit: Before losing, 24-17, to the St. Louis Rams Sunday, New England Coach Bill Belichick said: "As long as I've been in the NFL [1975], this is the most explosive offense I've ever seen. Every play is a potential touchdown from any place on the field."

They're reminiscent of the 1950 L.A. Rams, who averaged 38.8 points a game in a 12-game regular-season schedule with such stars on offense as Bob Waterfield, Norm Van Brocklin, "Deacon" Dan Towler, Tank Younger, Elroy Hirsch and Tom Fears.

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Real turkeys: CBS television analyst Randy Cross on the woeful records of Detroit and Dallas, the home teams, in the NFL's Thanksgiving Day schedule: "The NFL should rotate home teams for Thanksgiving Day. The Cowboys have gone from America's Team to who in America wants this team?"

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Looking back: On this day in 1962, USC defeated UCLA., 14-3, on its way to an 11-0 record and the national championship.

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Trivia answer: Drew Brees of Purdue, 83 (completing 55) against Wisconsin on Oct. 10, 1998.

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And finally: Thomas Boswell of the Washington Post on Michael Jordan's Washington Wizards: "The Wizards are Mike plus 11 guys who wouldn't start for any NBA team with a winning record.

"Who put this collection of third guards, fourth forwards, backup centers and rookies who are two years away?

"Oh, sorry, that would be Michael, wouldn't it?"

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