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The Inside Track | MORNING BRIEFING

Win by the Right Guy Would Be Flab-ulous

April 08, 2006|Pete Thomas | Times Staff Writer

Being one of the overweight golf writers covering the Masters, Jim Moore of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer is rooting for one of the overweight golfers to claim the green jacket.

There's precedent: Craig Stadler's 1982 triumph over Dan Pohl on the first hole of a playoff.

"I saw him Tuesday and it was a beautiful sight -- sweating, disheveled, nothing in place but his sense of humor," Moore writes.

But, alas, the columnist concludes that the chances of winning for those with bellies over belts are, you guessed it, "slim and none."

Trivia time: Which major league baseball players share the record for most home runs in April?

Fired up: Tom Brands, Iowa's new wrestling coach, must be a truly inspiring leader. Out-of-shape Iowa City Press-Citizen columnist Pat Harty covered the hiring of Brands and remarked:

"I left Wednesday's press conference with my gut sucked in, my chest sticking out, my jaw and fists clenched and just waiting for somebody to mess with me. I even thought of doing push-ups and sit-ups, or at least walking my dog at a brisk pace."

Bull's-eye: The Florida Gators were the most prominent of 12 national championship teams personally congratulated by President Bush this week, but the U.S. Military Academy's rifle team generated the most laughter.

Actually, it was Bush's comments regarding Vice President Dick Cheney and his infamous February hunting incident -- he accidentally shot a guy -- that caused the uproar.

"If you happen to be walking around and run into the vice president," Bush said, pausing amid laughter, "you might give him a few pointers."

Oops! Bush twice referred to the Washington volleyball team as "Wisconsin," prompting Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times to comment, "All was forgiven, however, once the prez asked the band to strike up a few bars of his favorite fight song, 'On, Washington.' "

Leading ladies: The top athlete on FHM magazine's list of this year's top 100 sexiest women is tennis player Maria Sharapova at No. 8. She was ranked 19th in 2005.

Other athletes mentioned are golfer Natalie Gulbis, 35th; IRL driver Danica Patrick, 42nd; snowboarder Gretchen Bleiler, 55th, and swimmer Amanda Beard, 92nd. Actress Scarlett Johansson tops the list.

Feeling stupid: Former Clipper Quentin Richardson says losing with the Knicks feels even worse because Coach Larry Brown is a proven winner.

"So what does that make us? Imbeciles," he told the New York Times. "That's all it can make us."

Trivia answer: The Seattle Mariners' Ken Griffey Jr. and the Arizona Diamondbacks' Luis Gonzalez hit 13 in 1997 and 2001, respectively.

And finally: Frank Fitzpatrick in the Philadelphia Inquirer: "At this year's Masters champions' dinner, Tiger Woods served Mexican food, marking the first time Woods has given indigestion to his Augusta opponents before the start of the tournament."

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