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Because It Was Open Season, Tennis Critic Took a Few Shots

Some random thoughts from columnist Tony Kornheiser of the Washington Post on the recently concluded U.S. Open:

“Jimmy Connors, the Werewolf of Flushing Meadow, skipped the Open for the first time since John Quincy Adams was president.

“And John McEnroe, whose gift for self-destruction is legendary, kept his Nikes off the court and stored them, instead, in his mouth.

“Thank heaven for Steffi Graf and Pete Sampras. By Super Saturday, they were the only players left who didn’t need to wear a name tag.”

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Trivia time: Who holds the NFL record for most touchdowns on punt returns?

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Even Steven: From Jack O’Connell of the Hartford Courant: “The New York Mets have taken a deserved bashing for player personnel decisions in recent years, but give Frank Cashen credit for not signing Darryl Strawberry to a five-year contract and letting him go to the Dodgers as a free agent.

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“The Mets’ blunder was not letting Strawberry go, but their signing of Vince Coleman to replace him.”

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Traditionalist: From Phil Jackman of the Baltimore Sun:

“Reason No. 357 to like Terry Bradshaw. In England to do an NFL exhibition game, the CBS studio analyst had a chance to play a bunch of golf courses. He loved Carnoustie, but listen to his assessment of St. Andrews:

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“ ‘Disappointing. I thought it was a goat ranch. The people were snobby, and the course was the easiest, by far.’ ”

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Winning writers: Ram Coach Chuck Knox handed out numerous game balls to his players after the team’s 27-0 victory over Pittsburgh on Sunday.

In 1970, after the Rams had beaten the San Diego Chargers at the Coliseum, 37-10, Coach George Allen distributed game balls to local reporters, whose contribution to the victory is still vague.

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For the record: USC Coach John Robinson’s record for two-point conversion attempts in the closing seconds of a game is 0-3, not 0-2 as reported.

In 1977, after Lynn Cain had scored against Alabama at the Coliseum, quarterback Rob Hertel’s pass for two points was intercepted with 35 seconds to play. Alabama won, 21-20.

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Unsung hero: Asked to identify “The Person Who Doesn’t Get Enough Credit at Washington” for the Huskies’ media guide, senior guard D’Marco Farr wrote: “The guy that cleans up the locker room.”

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Fugitive manager: Columnist Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle commenting on Giant Manager Dusty Baker’s demeanor during the team’s losing streak:

“Baker said he is close to snapping, losing his temper, but so far he is showing more poise under pressure than Dr. Richard Kimble.”

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Trivia answer: Jack Christiansen of Detroit, 1951-58, and Rick Upchurch of Denver, 1975-83, each with eight.

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Quotebook: Jim Donaghy of the Associated Press on last week’s pitching gem by Houston’s Darryl Kile: “Does a no-hitter against the Mets really count?”

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