- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 25, 2001

Four out of five ex-Washington Wizards coaches agree: 2001 set a new standard in sheer, unadulterated sports dubiousness.
And it's not even close.
George O'Leary fibbed. Randy Moss blathered. Dan Issel fumed. Everyone unwound at the Gold Club. And O.J. Simpson continued his lonely quest for justice.
It was ridiculous. It was ignominious. It was with apologies to Esquire magazine nothing short of dubious …
Performance of the Year
Bronx pitcher Danny Almonte threw a perfect game in the Little League World Series, the first in 44 years.
Umpires found a Stridex pad in his back pocket
Officials discovered that Almonte was 14, two years older than the maximum age for Little League eligibility.
So are you
Washington Redskins quarterback Jeff George: "Leadership is overrated."
Silly us. We were thinking AIDS
Oregon football coach Mike Belloti compared his team's BCS snub to contracting cancer.
Not guilty? You're kidding!
O.J. Simpson was acquitted by a Miami jury in a road rage case.
Back so soon?
Six weeks later, federal agents raided Simpson's home as part of an investigation into a suspected ecstasy ring.
The real killer is Sarah Jessica Parker. Or maybe Dennis Miller
Though no ecstasy was found, agents confiscated satellite dishes that they believe were wired to receive pay television channels for free.
Lies make Touchdown Jesus cry
Five days after he was hired, Notre Dame football coach George O'Leary resigned when it was revealed that he had fudged his resume.
He didn't invent the Internet, either
O'Leary, formerly the coach at Georgia Tech, falsely claimed to have a master's degree from NYU and to have been a three-time football letter winner at New Hampshire.
The end of the Rainbow is in Atlanta …
Notre Dame paid Georgia Tech $1.5 million to buy O'Leary out of his contract.
… just ask these guys
Terrell Davis, Dikembe Mutumbo, Patrick Ewing and Jamal Anderson were among the athletes subpoenaed to testify about sexual favors given to sports stars at Atlanta's Gold Club, the target of a federal racketeering case.
Big surprise
Dennis Rodman was also subpoenaed.
Double play
Braves outfielder Andruw Jones testified that he had sex with a pair of women who were putting on a lesbian sex show at a Gold Club hotel room party.
In other words, the average playoff crowd at Turner Field
Jones also said that "half a dozen guys" were in the room watching.
Because service is nothing without supervision
Ewing testified that he twice received sexual favors at the club and that club owner Steve Kaplan was in the same room on both occasions.
Oh, is that all?
Added Ewing: "The girls danced and started fondling me. I got aroused … They performed oral sex. [Afterward], I hung around for a little while longer and then I left."
Bring the whole family!
Said promoter Jason Boyd, shortly before federal agents shut down the club: "You don't have to have Andruw Jones' looks. You don't have to be a millionaire. Just come out and have fun."
Warning: The following is rated TV-M
A television movie about Bob Knight is due next year.
And in the role of Steve Alford … Trey Wingo
The film will be produced by ESPN.
Or maybe Diana Ross
After Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones lost weight and reportedly had a facelift, former Cowboys coach Jimmy Johnson referred to him as "Michael Jackson."
Splendor in the grass
Dan Wood, a Wimbledon security guard, was caught in a love match with an unidentified female in the steward's room under the Centre Court stands.
Giving "Breakfast at Wimbledon" a whole new meaning
Said Wood: "There was no time for strawberries and cream, though that would have been fun."
Dan, Boris. Boris, Dan.
Boris Becker admitted that he had sex with a Russian model-waitress in a restaurant broom closet on New Year's Eve, 1999. DNA tests later confirmed that he had fathered a daughter.
Calling Johnny Cochran
Before the paternity test, Becker's legal team was reportedly ready to argue that the model-waitress injected herself with Becker's sperm following oral sex, facilitating a Russian mafia blackmail plot.
In related news, David Copperfield is suing Magic Johnson …
Allen Iverson is being sued by a childhood friend who claims that he invented Iverson's nickname, "the Answer," which is used by Reebok.
… Warren Beatty is suing Clyde Frazier …
Iverson's friend, Jamil Blackmon, alleges that Iverson promised to pay him 25 percent of all royalties derived from the nickname.
… and Shaquille O'Neal is suing himself
O'Neal, creator of self-appointed monikers such as "Big Aristotle" and "Big IPO," recently dubbed himself and Kobe Bryant "Fire and Ice."
Call him "Big Andruw Jones"
O'Neal jokingly told a Los Angeles radio station that he had slept with tennis star Venus Williams, supermodel Cindy Crawford and music star Aaliyah.
Steve Gutenberg was not amused
Utah Jazz center Olden Polynice plead guilty to charges of impersonating a police officer in a traffic confrontation.
Sounds like a job for Officer Polynice
Following a courtside argument, former Wizards coach Leonard Hamilton had stadium security escort forward Tyrone Nesby to the team's locker room.
It was for medicinal purposes. Honest.
Out for the season with an Achilles' injury, Houston Rockets forward Maurice Taylor was suspended for using marijuana.
Police found 6,584 empty Fritos bags in the backseat
Heavyset former Dallas Cowboys lineman Nate Newton was arrested in Louisiana for transporting 213 pounds of marijuana in a van.
He was heading for Maurice Taylor's house
A month later, Newton was arrested in Texas for carrying 175 pounds of marijuana in his car.
They're cheating, but are they trying?
Howard University was placed on five-year probation by the NCAA for violations in men's and women's basketball, swimming and baseball. Only the women's basketball team had a winning record last season.
And don't get him started on all that horn-blowing
Bowie State University president Calvin Lowe called the routines of the school's marching band "faggot dancing."
Um, not anymore
Lowe also expressed concern that Bowie State had acquired a reputation as a gay-friendly school.
Needless to say, Calvin Lowe wasn't invited
The Los Angeles Sparks made a promotional appearance at the 12,000-member Girl Bar, the nation's largest lesbian club.
It was that, or suffer through a taping of "Unscripted"
Before their heavyweight title fight, Lennox Lewis and Hasim Rahman got into a shoving match on the set of ESPN's "Up Close."
Actually, he's never even seen the Bowie State marching band
Rahman touched off the fracas by telling Lewis, "You're being gay."
Neither has Mark Cuban
Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, blew a kiss to Utah coach Jerry Sloan after Sloan yelled at Cuban for hectoring game officials.
Guess she's not a forestry major
Cynthia Harrah, a member of the San Jose State women's soccer team, got drunk and attacked Stanford's tree mascot during a football game.
Timber!
Charles Armstrong, the Stanford mascot, said he had already been jumped three times this season, once by the assistant coach of the Oregon State volleyball team.
They mistook Tim Couch for the Stanford Tree
Angry over a last-minute call that helped Jacksonville win at Cleveland, Browns fans pelted the field with beer bottles and debris, forcing a 30-minute delay at game's end.
Feel the love
Said Browns president Carmen Policy: "I like the fact that our fans care."
More caring
The next night, New Orleans fans threw bottles, cups, ice and paper onto the field after a call went against the Saints.
Leave the beer out of this!
Said Miller Brewing Co. spokesman Scott Bussen: "It's not about the beer bottles … Maybe [the fans] were just obnoxious losers."
Case in point
Following Maryland's epic home basketball collapse against Duke in January, fans pelted the arena floor with cups and coins and hit the mother of Blue Devils center Carlos Boozer in the head with a water bottle.
What, no bottle?
During the playoffs, Cleveland pitcher John Rocker threw water on hecklers in Seattle.
Thirsty?
While sitting in the penalty box, Toronto Maple Leafs forward Tie Domi twice poured water on a group of Philadelphia hecklers.
Next time, throw water
Los Angeles Dodgers executive Kevin Malone was forced to resign after challenging a San Diego heckler to a fight.
This one's for Kevin Malone!
When one of the hecklers tried to punch Domi and instead fell into the box, Domi pummeled him.
Hotfoots are so passe
Saints receiver Albert Connell reportedly stole money out of the team's locker room from teammate Deuce McAllister, then said it was a prank.
John Rocker also will be contracted
Citing financial losses, baseball owners voted to eliminate two teams.
Apparently, Alex Rodriguez misplaced his wallet
Defending the owners' decision, commissioner Bug Selig told Congress that the sport lost $519 million last season.
But will Billy Crystal will make it into an HBO movie?
Portland Trail Blazers forward Rasheed Wallace set an NBA record for technical fouls in a season with 40.
Next year he's shooting for 50
The previous technical foul record also belonged to Wallace.
Hey who isn't hungry after scoring?
Spanish soccer player Jose Antonio Reyes was bitten on his, er, manhood by a teammate, Francisco Gallardo, during a post-goal celebration.
Not to mention his marriage vows
Officials said Gallardo's choice of in-game snack violated league rules regarding "sporting dignity and decorum."
He was just thanking God he's not a Spanish soccer player
After pointing skyward following a home run, Red Sox outfielder Carl Everett grabbed his crotch, incurring a fine from the league office.
C'mon, it happens all the time at Vince McMahon's house
At Red Sox Family Day, Everett got into an expletive-laced shouting and shoving match with home plate umpire Bill Welke. He also threw his bat at Welke's feet.
If at first you don't succeed…
Everett head-butted the home plate umpire at last year's Red Sox Family Day.
Wait tell us how you really feel
Said Martina Hingis, before the French Open: "Paris is a great city if the French wouldn't be there. They're very arrogant compared to other cities, because they're French."
Touche!
During Hingis' French Open match against Sandrine Testud, an egg was thrown onto the court.
But at least he won ballgames
George Washington men's basketball coach Tom Penders resigned after a three-year stint that featured a telephone calling card scandal, sex and weapon misdemeanor charges against a player and a series of fistfights with other teams.
OK, maybe not
The Colonials were 14-18 last year, their first losing season in 11 years.
Like Jackie O, except for the fights, scandals and misdemeanors
Said GW athletic director Jack Kvancz: "There's a man [Penders] who exudes class."
However, they drew the line at a Christmas bonus
GW reportedly honored the remainder of Pender's contract, worth $300,000 to $400,000 annually for the next three years.
No, really?
Said Penders: "I'm more than pleased with what they have decided to do for me."
That, or the dog ate her forehand
Jennifer Capriati blamed a loss to Monica Seles on Seles' grunting.
"Like, you know, it could be a totally important call!"
During the same match, Capriati screamed, "Answer it," at a fan whose cell phone was ringing.
You mean fans?
Said Capriati: "It was tough for me to concentrate with other distractions, like people in the crowd."
His next role: Smarmy malpractice lawyer
Actor/comedian Jay Mohr ("Jerry Maguire's" Bob Sugar) accused the Indianapolis Colts of "gross negligence" regarding Edgerrin James' season-ending knee injury.
He had him at hello
Mohr and Colts general manager Bill Polian subsequently got into in a 17-minute shouting match on Indianapolis talk radio.
Though technically speaking, it's not an NCAA violation
Cal State Fullerton runner Leilani Rios was kicked off the school's track team for dancing part-time at the Flamingo Theater, a strip club.
Who woulda thunk it?
Said Rios: "I was shocked."
So were they. But in a good way
Rios' secondary occupation was discovered when members of the Fullerton baseball team visited the club.
The Flamingo Theater immediately offered her a job
Tennis player Ashley Harkleroad, 16, made her U.S. Open debut in a revealing 2-piece tennis outfit.
Wonder why
Said Harkleroad: "Nike is my sponsor, and I went to [its] showroom earlier this week. I tried on all the clothes and they liked me in that outfit best."
Father figure …
New England Patriots receiver Terry Glenn was charged with assaulting the mother of his son last spring.
… role model …
Glenn was suspended for the first four games of the season for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy.
… team player …
Glenn refused to show for Patriots training camp and was suspended by the team for the entire season.
… and all-around great guy.
After the suspension was overturned, Glenn was injured almost immediately and suspended again for refusing to practice.
The real victim
Glenn sued the NFL under the Americans with Disabilities Act, claiming that he suffers from "depression" and that the league's drug tests are thus discriminatory.
And make it a Corona
Denver Nuggets coach Dan Issel was suspended for four games after shouting "go drink another beer, you Mexican [expletive]" at a heckler.
Um, neither one is Mexican?
Upset with a pair of calls by a black linesman in his match against James Blake, also black, Lleyton Hewitt complained to the chair umpire: "Just get him off the court … Look at him. Look at him and you tell me what the similarity is."
Or make him shut up, for that matter
Said loafing-prone Minnesota receiver Randy Moss: "When I want to play I'll play. There is nobody here on the face of this earth that can make me go out here and play football."
Analogy of the Year
Baltimore tight end Shannon Sharpe, on the suggestion that Cincinnati linebacker Takeo Spikes is as good as Baltimore's Ray Lewis: "That's like saying 'Dude, Where's My Car?' is just as good as 'Titanic.'"
Milestone of the Year
For the fourth time in five years, former world No.1 Marcelo Rios won the French Open's Lemon Prize, given annually to the player with the most sour attitude.
Loophole of the Year
Jordan, on a possible comeback: "I'm 99.9 percent sure I won't play again."
Injury of the Year
Serena Williams blamed losses in the Australian Open and Wimbledon semifinals on an upset stomach.
Gut Check of the Year
Williams, after an epic 6-2, 6-1 victory over Magdalena Maleeva: "I don't know how I got through. I was thinking about pulling out before that match."
Team of the Year
The Detroit Lions, who started the season 0-12.
Reaction Shot of the Year
Lions president and general manager Matt Millen, after each of the club's 12 losses.
League of the Year
The XFL, which folded after a single season of sideline exotic dancers, He Hate Me, bad football and color commentary from Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura.
Coach of the Year
Maryland's Gary Williams, who sarcastically thanked Terrapins fans for their support after the team was jeered following a home loss to Florida State.
Owner of the Year
Cuban, who totaled $505,000 in fines for ref-baiting antics that included putting a freeze-frame image of a blown call on the overhead scoreboard at Reunion Arena. Cuban matched each fine with a donation to charity.
Science Project of the Year
Cuban recently hired a statistics expert to track refs at every Mavericks game.
Quote of the Year
Redskins owner Dan Snyder: "I think I'm pretty hands-off."
Sportsman of the Year
Boxer James Butler, who, after losing a middleweight bout, punched winner Richard Grant in the jaw while Grant was extending his arms for a post-fight embrace.
United We Stand
The bout was held in New York City as part of a fund-raising exhibition for the victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks.


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