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Will This Duck’s Bill Come Due Saturday?

Times Staff Writer

Oregon quarterback Kellen Clemens may have set himself up to be a sitting duck Saturday when USC visits Eugene, Ore.

After the Ducks’ tough, 37-34 victory over Fresno State on Saturday, Clemens, interviewed by TBS’ Craig Sager, said: “We’re excited to be 3-0 and have another home game against a ranked opponent.”

There’s a difference, however. Fresno State was ranked No. 23, USC is ranked No. 1.

Of the Trojans, Clemens said, “Bring ‘em on. Let’s keep this going.”

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Sager asked, “You can beat ‘em?”

Clemens: “I think we -- yes sir.”

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Trivia time: USC plays host to Fresno State on Nov. 19. The only other time the two schools met was in the 1992 Freedom Bowl at Anaheim Stadium, when the Bulldogs won, 24-7. Who was the Bulldogs’ quarterback?

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Cream of the crop: Paula Creamer, the LPGA’s rookie sensation who turned 19 on Aug. 5, opted for a professional golf career instead of college.

Creamer, who will play in the Office Depot Championship at Trump National Golf Club in Rancho Palos Verdes Sept. 30-Oct. 2, said on a conference call with reporters that she regretted missing the college experience.

“But at the same time I wanted to be the No. 1 player in the world, not the No. 1 collegiate player,” she said.

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A different game: Avenger kicker Remy Hamilton is now with the Detroit Lions, who played in Chicago Sunday. When Hamilton needed the ball to be held on the tee at the start of the second half because of wind, Fox announcer Joe Buck asked partner Troy Aikman: “Do they kick off in the Arena league?”

Aikman: “I don’t know what they do in the Arena league, but if they do, I know they’ve never had an issue with the ball being blown off the tee.”

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Holes in the blanket: According to Fox commentator Bill Maas, the trash talking between Minnesota Viking cornerback Fred Smoot and Cincinnati Bengal receiver Chad Johnson before Sunday’s game included this line from Smoot: “I hope you’re ready for a picnic today, because I brought my blanket.”

Smoot’s blanket didn’t cover much. Johnson had a big day and the Bengals had a picnic, 37-8.

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Frankly speaking: NASCAR has introduced a line of hot dogs, smoked sausage, bacon and a variety of lunch meats that carry the NASCAR brand. Randy Turner of the Winnipeg Free Press suggests this advertising jingle: “My hot dog has a first name, it’s N-A-S-C-A-R

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Looking back: On this day in 1981, Marcus Allen rushed for 274 yards in USC’s 21-0 victory over Indiana. The school record for yards rushing in a game is 347, set by the late Ricky Bell in 1976 against Washington State.

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Trivia answer: Trent Dilfer.

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And finally: NBC and TNT NASCAR commentator Benny Parsons, talking about a poll in which Dale Earnhardt Jr. gained 74% of the vote for most disappointing driver of 2005, said: “Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins every vote, even when it’s bad.”

Larry Stewart can be reached at larry.stewart@latimes.com.


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