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From crazy to lazy, like clockwork

Times Staff Writer

The Monday after Bracket Sunday is not a recognized national holiday, but that’s merely a formality.

Judging from the amount of productivity at workplaces distracted and dominated by NCAA office pools, it might as well be.

Throw in this year’s early jump to Daylight Savings Time and all Lazy Monday lacked were the celebratory cupcakes. John A. Challenger, chief executive of the global outplacement consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, told the Chicago Sun-Times last week he expected Lazy Monday to be one of the least productive workdays on the calendar.

“We are turning the clocks ahead a month earlier than in the past,” he said. “Not only will this catch many Americans off guard in terms of their sleep habits, but information technology experts are predicting some computer glitches related to the early shift.

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“Between sleepy workers, computer glitches and March Madness, it will be a miracle if any actual work gets done....”

Unless you consider how much actual work it takes to figure out the East Regional.

Trivia time

Since the NCAA tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985, what is the overall record of No. 1-seeded teams against No. 16s?

(Hint: Think UCLA, early 1970s.)

Call them athlete-students

Meanwhile, work in the classroom can be limited for a big-time college basketball player -- and not just during March.

Former Texas A&M; star Antoine Wright, now a reserve with the New Jersey Nets, tells Bob Costas on tonight’s edition of HBO’s “Costas Now” that he received a better education in high school than in college.

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“Once I got to college, I kind of let my hair down a little bit,” Wright says. “I don’t have to write term papers any more -- I just have to get a grade now and play basketball.”

Costas: “Tell me what it was like in these agriculture classes [at A&M;].”

Wright: “In certain classes you see, you know, a quarterback, me, a running back, and then a farmer. So, it definitely was a little bizarre. But, we’re all in poultry science for a reason. We’re in this class because we need to get this grade. We’re not really trying to learn about chickens.”

Costas: “You took one course in floral design. What was that like?”

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Wright: “It’s not as easy as it sounds, to be honest with you. But they put me in there with a couple of athletes. You’re gonna ask me a question about floral design -- I can’t answer it because I needed a grade.”

Oh no! Canada?

During a news conference at the Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, someone asked Gustavo Kuerten, “Do you fear Canada?” in regard to facing its team in Davis Cup play in April.

“They’re not gonna kill me,” Kuerten replied. “You know, tennis is not a contact sport.”

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Very cheesy

In another interview session at the Open, Andy Roddick discussed the debacle known as the ATP’s experiment with round-robin play at selected tournaments.

“I am in favor of shelving it,” Roddick said. “I personally don’t think we’ll ever see it again. It’s got more holes than Swiss cheese, I’m telling you.”

Trivia answer

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The same as UCLA’s record during its 1971-74 winning streak: 88-0.

And finally

On ABC’s “NBA Sunday Countdown,” Sacramento Kings co-owner Gavin Maloof recalled his response to a young fan who asked if he was the team’s coach.

“Thank God I’m not the coach,” Maloof told the youngster, “because coaches can get fired.”

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mike.penner@latimes.com


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