- The Washington Times - Sunday, December 1, 2002

I'm not saying the Eagles are panicking about their quarterback situation, but I hear they asked the Colts for Tom Matte's phone number.

By the way, how long do you suppose it will be before Chris Berman refers to Philly's new QB as A.J. "Touchy" Feeley?

Neal from Gaithersburg writes: "ESPN just informed me that Chad Clifton [the Packer zapped by Warren Sapp] has a 'massive amount of blood in his pelvis.' Some things I don't need to know."

So I'm reading about Arizona Cardinals running back Robert Jones breaking his hand while reaching for the phone, and I'm thinking: Isn't that the same excuse Nixon's secretary used for the missing 181/2 minutes on that Watergate tape?

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, the Sunday Column proudly presents 10 Athletes, Past and Present, Whose Names Sound Almost Like "Turkey":
1. Kyle Turley, offensive tackle, New Orleans Saints (1998-) Best known for ripping the helmet off Jets safety Damien Robinson and flinging it about 40 yards.
2. Bob Purkey, major league pitcher (1954-66) Went 23-5 for the Reds in 1962.
3. Herkie Walls, NFL wide receiver (1983-85, '87) Career totals for the Oilers and Bucs: 32 catches, two touchdowns.
4. Jari Torkki, left wing, Chicago Blackhawks (1988-89) Played in four NHL games, scoring one goal.
5. Tom Tuckey, pitcher, Boston Braves (1908-09) Lost all nine of his decisions in his final big league season.
6. Marty Turco, goalie, Dallas Stars (2000-) Currently leading the league with a 1.56 goals-against average.
7. Hidayet Turkoglu, forward, Sacramento Kings (2000-) Actually born in Turkey (Istanbul, to be exact). Good for about 10 points a game for the Kings.
8. Tiki Barber, running back, New York Giants (1997-) Has 883 yards rushing, 453 receiving and six TDs going into today's game against Tennessee.
9. Greg Terlecky, pitcher, St. Louis Cardinals (1975) Posted an 0-1 record in his only season in the majors, though he did bat .333 (1-for-3).
10. Eric Torkelson, running back, Green Bay Packers (1974-77) Lone NFL score came on a fumble recovery.
Honorable mention: Joe "Turkey" Jones (defensive end with several NFL teams in the '70s and '80s, including the Redskins), Luther "Ticky" Burden (guard who averaged 19.9 points a game for the ABA's Virginia Squires in '75-76), Dick "Turk" Farrell (won 106 games and saved 83 for the Phillies, Dodgers and Astros from '56 to '69).
And I'd be remiss if I didn't mention: Ann Turkel (model-actress who had a bit part in "Paper Lion," the 1968 film about George Plimpton's adventures quarterbacking the Detroit Lions).

Stat of the Week: The Denver Broncos are 7-0 in day games and 0-4 in night games.

Second-Best Stat of the Week: There are now two sets of brothers quarterbacking in the NFL Matt (Seahawks) and Tim (Eagles) Hasselbeck and Koy (Eagles) and Ty (Lions) Detmer. Near as I can tell, there's been only one other such pair in modern history: the Bradshaws, Terry (Steelers) and Craig (Oilers), in 1980. (Craig played behind Kenny Stabler and Gifford Nielsen that year and never threw a pass in the two games he was on the active roster.)

Michael Westbrook gets cut by 1-10 Cincinnati (after catching just eight balls for 94 yards). I don't even need a joke for that one, do I?

On the plus side, Michael didn't punch anybody while he was there. But that's probably because he fractured his wrist on the third day of training camp.

Memo to Mike: I understand the Detroit Fury, your hometown Arena Football team, is looking to help after a 1-13 season.

Ralph Friedgen might be on a diet, but he obviously hasn't developed much of a taste for peaches or tangerines.

News item:
According to the Roanoke Times, Virginia Tech fans can now buy a "Hokie Edition" Ford Explorer.
Hopefully, it won't be like this year's football team and run out of gas in November.

Sure to spark debate: Sports Fan Magazine's list of the "50 Most Popular Athletes in D.C. Sports History," compiled by Greg Wyshynski. Len Bias ranked ahead of Larry Brown? Tom McMillen above Sugar Ray Leonard? Marco Etcheverry 30th and Dexter Manley 42nd? Check it out at www.sportsfanmagazine.com. It'll get your juices flowing.

Two sports figures claimed to be Changed Men recently Mike Tyson (while promoting his upcoming bout against Clifford Etienne) and Keith Olbermann (in a Salon.com column that apologized for his churlish behavior at ESPN back in the '90s).

See if you can figure out which of our Changed Men made which of the following statements. (Answers below.)
a. "I'm a very complex individual sometimes."
b. "It feels as if I'm coming out of a huge fog bank."
c. "I couldn't handle the pressure and what was worse, I didn't know I couldn't handle it."
d. "I was fortunate to make a lot of mistakes and not totally destroy my life."
e. "I was happy being angry. Now I'm happy being happy."
f. "Deep down inside I've always believed that everybody around me was qualified and competent, and I wasn't, and that some day I'd be found out."
g. "I might have been purified [by my latest career setback]. Now I feel clean and ready to start over."

I could get a lot more worked up about the modern pentathlon being on the IOC's endangered list if I could remember what the heck the modern pentathlon was. Let's see that's wind surfing, rollerblading, tongue wrestling, stock manipulating and shopping, isn't it?

The Pistons sure are missing Jerry Stackhouse.

If they were missing him any more, they'd be in first place.

FYI: If Michael Jordan continues scoring at his current pace 16.4 points his career average will drop from 31.0 to 29.8 by the time he hangs 'em up in April. What does this mean, you ask? It means Wilt Chamberlain (30.1) will regain the No.1 spot all time.

Should Michael, however, play only 60 games as he did last season he would stay ahead of Wilt (30.13 to 30.07).

In the wake of all these arrests (Damon Stoudamire, Rasheed Wallace, Ruben Patterson), the Trail Blazers reportedly are considering selling their team plane and traveling by paddy wagon.

Stoudamire, Wallace and Patterson are scheduled to be arraigned Friday, the same day Miami is in town to play the Blazers. I can see it now: Felons Get in Free Night at the Rose Garden.

Answers to Tyson-Olbermann quiz: a. Tyson; b. Olbermann; c. Olbermann; d. Tyson; e. Tyson; f. Olbermann; g. Tyson.

And finally, I'm intrigued that Shaquille O'Neal already knows there's going to be "a pain on the outside of my knee" that's going to prevent him from playing in the 2004 Olympics. I mean, has the guy got any stock tips? Who does he like in the Super Bowl?

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