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The Inside Track | MORNING BRIEFING

New at Starbucks: the Asphalt Frappuccino

January 02, 2006|Larry Stewart | Times Staff Writer

Announcer Keith Jackson, who will call Wednesday's Rose Bowl game, is a wine connoisseur. He apparently also knows something about coffee.

Jackson, among those on the dais at an ABC-ESPN news conference Sunday at the Rose Bowl media hotel in Beverly Hills, was not too fond of the coffee.

"Save that pot of coffee back there for me," he told reporters, pointing to the back of the room. "I'll take it home and pave my street with it."

Trivia time: What coach led different schools to the Rose Bowl game in consecutive seasons?

A "celling" point: Also on the dais at Sunday's news conference was Len DeLuca, ESPN senior vice president of programming and acquisitions.

Among other things, DeLuca showed off a new ESPN cellphone that will soon go on the market. It has many gadgets, including video capabilities. It can do just about anything except make a cup of coffee.

Asked a reporter in the back of the room: "But can you make and receive phone calls on it?"

A weak spot: ESPN's Lee Corso, who was also among those on the dais, said special-teams play could be an important factor in Wednesday's game between USC and Texas.

Corso claims the Trojans rank 117th among major colleges in punt-return coverage.

"Of course the problem is, if you're Texas, can you get them to punt the ball?" Corso said.

Good point: Chris Fowler, the host of ESPN's "College GameDay," on Rose Bowl hype: "There's a big difference between the matchup of the century and the game of the century. We hyped the heck out of USC-Oklahoma last year, and that didn't even turn out to be the game of the day."

Irreverent golf: Generally, professional golfers are respectful of their elders. But that isn't the case with the 30-and-under young guns who can be seen today at 1 p.m. on CBS, competing in the taped coverage of the team match-play Tommy Bahama Challenge.

Says South African Tim Clark of International team captain David Feherty: "He had a great career and brings a lot of knowledge to the game, an extreme understanding of the golf swing. He is certainly someone we all grew up idolizing. And if you believe all that, you've got some serious problems."

Zach Johnson, on U.S. team captain Gary McCord: "That name rings a bell."

Aaron Oberholser, on McCord: "He's our team captain? We're dead meat."

Looking back: On this day in 1987, No. 2 Penn State beat No. 1 Miami, 14-10, in the Fiesta Bowl for the national championship.

Trivia answer: Tommy Prothro. He led Oregon State to the 1965 Rose Bowl, where the Beavers lost to Michigan, 34-7. The next year, he led UCLA to the Rose Bowl, where the Bruins upset Michigan State, 14-12.

And finally: Jackson, 77, often referred to as a legend, says, "One thing about being called a legend is that you must realize that you are not far from becoming an ancestor."

*

Larry Stewart can be reached at larry.stewart@latimes.com.

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