- The Washington Times - Friday, December 28, 2001

This prospective peek at the fun and games of 2002 comes with the promise that it will be a better year for somebody, somewhere:
Maryland upsets Florida 34-21 in the Orange Bowl, and grateful alumni propose changing the name of the school to the University of Ralph. … Anna Kournikova is named Playmate of the Year and tells the media, "Who cares about winning some silly, old tennis tournament?" … Based on their recent antagonistic exchange on Capitol Hill, the WWF signs baseball commissioner Bud Selig and Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura to stage Steel Cage matches around the country.
George O'Leary is hired to coach Boise State but is forced to resign five days later because he claimed on his resume that he had never faked a resume. … The Wizards run their record to 34-14 with a starting lineup consisting of Michael Jordan, Abe Pollin, Ted Leonsis, Wes Unseld and Susan O'Malley. … The Caps send Jaromir Jagr back to the Penguins after the star admits trashing his hotel room at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.
Bud Selig reveals plans to contract the Yankees and Diamondbacks immediately because, a spokesman says, "they are destroying the game's traditional balance." Major League Baseball then reveals plans to contract Selig instead. … Carl Everett walks out on the Rangers in spring training when he realizes that Alex Rodriguez makes more than he does. … Maryland wins the ACC tournament by beating Duke for the third time this season, prompting Terps coach Gary Williams to inquire, "Ralph? Ralph who?"
Mindful of the Diamondbacks' success under former broadcaster Bob Brenly, Peter Angelos fires Mike Hargrove after the Orioles lose their first two games and names Fred Manfra as manager. … Tino Martinez replaces Mark McGwire as the Cardinals' first baseman and hits eight home runs in his first 10 games. … Georgia State gives Lefty Driesell his first NCAA tournament championship by edging Maryland 95-94, and the former Terps coach explains the miracle by saying, "Wal, you know …"
Redskins owner Dan Snyder fires Marty Schottenheimer as coach because of "gross insubordination" and swipes Brian Billick away from the Ravens. Billick's first move is to hire Norv Turner as associate head coach and offensive coordinator, whereupon Snyder fires Billick and hires Kurt Schottenheimer as head man. … Heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis announces a title defense against former titlist Mike Tyson, "provided he promises not to bite and isn't in jail." … Michael Jordan says he plans to play five more NBA seasons against "these wimps and pimps they have in the league today."
Cal Ripken says he has convinced the Washington and Northern Virginia groups seeking a baseball franchise to merge and name him president, CEO, general manager, field manager and third baseman. Asked how his late father would feel about him leaving the Orioles, Ripken replies, "The who?" … Tiger Woods adds the U.S. Open championship to his Masters title and suggests that the PGA simply award him the British Open and PGA crowns "and save everybody a lot of trouble." … Bobby Knight is fired after his first season at Texas Tech for punching out everybody on his team at the school's awards banquet.
Jennifer Capriati wins both the women's and men's singles championships at Wimbledon after tests confirm that she is muscular enough to compete in the latter category. … Mike Tyson regains his heavyweight championship by defeating Lennox Lewis when the Briton faints two seconds after the opening bell. … The National League wins the All-Star Game when Vladimir Guererro of the Montreal/Washington/Northern Virginia Expo-Nats homers in the ninth and 11th inning off Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling.
After having a hip replacement, Albert Belle says he will return to baseball next season because "I love the fans, especially children. … Richard Williams, father of Venus and Serena, files a suit prohibiting Jennifer Capriati from ever again competing in the women's draw. … The Redskins move their training camp to the South Ellipse and charge tourists for watching practice. … Navy's new touch football team begins preseason workouts after the academy eliminates its Division I program as an act of mercy.
Kurt Schottenheimer hires his older brother Marty as Obfuscation Coordinator for the Redskins and their new starting quarterback, Ryan Leaf. Washington promptly loses its opener to the Detroit Lions 51-6. … Ralph Friedgen says Maryland "shouldn't lose a damn game this season, provided we don't have to play Florida State." … The Orioles finish with a 55-107 record, their worst since 1988, and Peter Angelos announces that he'll manage the team next season.
The Giants win their first World Series since 1954 as Barry Bonds breaks his own records by slugging 80 home runs and 17 nosy reporters. … Byung-Hyun Kim of the Diamondbacks loses the sixth and seventh games of the World Series to the Indians by allowing walk-off home runs and sobs afterward, "Can Koreans commit hara-kiri? … Pete Sampras files a suit prohibiting Jennifer Capriati from ever again competing in the men's draw.
Humiliated by Maryland in the Orange Bowl, Florida wins its first 10 games of the season by an average score of 43-7, prompting coach Steve Spurrier to crack a vestige of a smile. … With Ted Marchibroda back as coach, the Ravens lose their first nine games before edging the Redskins 7-6 at Laurel High School. … The Wizards win their first nine games with a starting lineup consisting of Michael Jordan and four cheerleaders.
Maryland runs its record to 13-0 by winning the first two games of the new NCAA Division I football playoffs, forcing basketball coach Gary Williams to resign because "nobody ever pays any attention to us." … No joke: The Montreal Expos are sold to a group headed by Cal Ripken, William Collins and Fred Malek, ending a 32-year baseball drought in the nation's capital. … Desperate sports columnist promises that 2003 will be a better year for somebody, somewhere.

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