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MORNING BRIEFING

Surfer catches a wave, goes for a ride

September 09, 2008|Grahame L. Jones | Times Staff Writer

John Morgan was doing a little surfing at Byron Bay on Australia's New South Wales coast over the weekend when it happened.

"I had just come off a wave," the 51-year-old surf shop manager told the Northern Star newspaper, "when I saw a large swirl of water. I was then suddenly hauled backward. It felt like I was riding behind a powerful Jet Ski."

It wasn't a Jet Ski; it was a shark. The animal had become entangled in the leg rope of the surfboard, and Morgan was hauled for about 150 yards before the shark freed itself.

"The water was dirty, so I couldn't make out what type of shark it was," Morgan said, "but I knew from the splashing white water that it was roughly eight- to 10-foot.

"I think the shark was as scared as I was. It totally freaked me out."

Trivia time

How many quarterbacks started NFL games during the 2007 season?

Extra baggage

It's been mentioned a few times how running back Tatum Bell, after being waived by the Detroit Lions, took off with luggage belonging to his successor, Rudi Johnson. Said David Thomas of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram: "Lions officials weren't too worried, however. If they thought Bell could carry something a long way, they wouldn't have released him in the first place."

Fish tale

Silver Asian carp were first imported to the U.S. in the 1970s, long before Seth Russell was born. But the 15-year-old now won't forget the fish. Russell was being towed on an inner tube across Lake Chicot in Arkansas when a carp leapt out of the water in front of him and hit him in the face.

Russell was knocked out by the blow and later had to have oral surgery to wire several teeth together. Could have been worse. Could have been that shark from Byron Bay.

End game

After having had their rear ends kicked, 70-0, by Arizona in the season opener, Idaho's Vandals have decided to change . . . their rear ends.

It seems Nike put the school's logo in an unfortunate location on the players' pants, and Rob Spear, Idaho's athletic director, has ordered it removed from all uniforms.

"I was disappointed with the look," Spear said.

Not to mention the result.

Trivia answer

Sixty-four.

And finally

"If the Rockies' baseball season were eggs," wrote Bernie Lincicome of the Rocky Mountain News, "there would be a carton and a half left, too many to throw away, too few to satisfy the hunger."

--

grahame.jones@latimes.com

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