- The Washington Times - Sunday, December 20, 2009

Well, Redskins fans, you’ve gotten rid of Vinny Cerrato. Now if you can just send Dan Snyder to the moon on one of Johnny’s Rockets.

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There’s no truth to the rumor, by the way, that Bruce Allen got the Redskins’ GM job only because Coy Gibbs turned it down.

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Now that an Allen is back in charge at Redskin Park, it’s probably only a matter of time before President Obama starts suggesting plays.

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The Redskins are still recovering from that end-around in the 1971 playoff game against the 49ers, the one Richard Nixon recommended to Bruce’s father George - and resulted in a 13-yard loss.

Allen had mixed results as general manager of the Bucs from 2004 to 2008. In his first year, for instance, he drafted Michael Clayton with the 15th overall pick. I mean, Michael Clayton is an OK receiver, but I liked the movie a lot better.

Number of the Week: 6. (How many personal foul penalties bad-boy offensive guard Richie Incognito has been assessed this season.)

Wouldn’t you love to know what the NFL record is - and who holds it? The league, of course, doesn’t keep track of such things, but maybe if you put in a Freedom of Information request for Dick Butkus’ FBI file…

Incognito picked up Nos. 5 and 6, as well as a $50,000 fine, against the Titans last Sunday, prompting the Rams to release him… and Buffalo to sign him.

Which means the Bills - hold your applause, please - have now employed Richie Incognito and Conrad Dobler (1980-81), his apparent role model.

“What you need when you play against Dobler,” an opponent once told Sports Illustrated, “is a string of garlic buds around your neck and a wooden stake. If they played every game under a full moon, Dobler would make All-Pro. He must be the only guy in the league who sleeps in a casket.”

Dobler’s reply: “Sometimes… I get my hand caught in a facemask. But always remember this: At no time do my fingers leave my hand.”

Unlike Incognito, Dobler was a good enough right guard to play in three Pro Bowls. Not that he necessarily relished the experience. The problem with the Pro Bowl, he said, is that “you get to know and like your opponents. And when you like a guy, you don’t step on his fingers or kick him getting up.”

Saw a report the other day that if Tiger Woods’ wife decides to divorce him, she gets $11.25 million and he gets all of Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska, plus parts of nine other states and slivers of two Canadian provinces.

Hey, wait a minute. Those aren’t the terms of their prenuptial agreement. Those are the terms of the Louisiana Purchase.

Three of Woods’ sponsors - Accenture, Gillette and Tag Heuer, the Swiss watchmaker - have already distanced themselves from him. Nike is holding firm but is considering changing its motto from “Just Do It” to “Whatever You’re Doing, Don’t Get Caught.”

The timing of the Tiger scandal couldn’t be much worse for golf, given the state of the economy. Heck, if his “indefinite” sabbatical lasts very long, the Tour might have to start charging for free drops.

Not to worry, though. Steve Stricker made enough money last year so that, well, put it this way: His wife shouldn’t have to carry his bag again until at least 2012.

The players, I hear, are bracing for the worst - smaller purses, fewer events, even the possibility that courtesy cars will be replaced by coin-operated Segways.

The news hasn’t been all bad for Tiger, though. The Associated Press just anointed him Athlete of the Decade, his fellow golfers voted him PGA Tour Player of the Year and Verizon named him Text Messager of the Month.

Two highlights from Yao Ming’s interview in Esquire’s Meaning of Life issue:

• “When I was young, we were taught not to dunk. We were taught not to stand out from the rest of the team. It’s different now. The young guys in China are new age. They want to show their stuff. But I am old-school. It was a big adjustment when I first came here to play at a camp. The coaches told me to dunk, but I would lay the ball in. Finally, the coaches made everyone else on my team run laps when I didn’t dunk. I didn’t want my teammates to be punished because of me. That’s how I learned to dunk.”

• “I haven’t done much trash-talking. But last year, I did complain about a call. Nobody could believe it. So I said, ‘I’ve spent a lot of English lessons. I want to get my money’s worth.’ The official was laughing.”

And finally…

The Minnesota Wild’s equipment van caught fire in Ottawa on Friday and left the team scrambling for sticks and stuff. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the Calgary Flames have an airtight alibi.

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