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‘Armageddon year’ for Garrett? By SCHUYLER DIXON AP Sports Writer

OXNARD, Calif. — Jerry Jones opened his 25th training camp as owner of the Dallas Cowboys sounding as if coach Jason Garrett would be around for 25 more. The first vote of confidence came even before someone could ask Saturday in the annual “State of the Cowboys” address that Jones gives on the eve of camp. The words got stronger after the questions started. Jones said it was a “mistake” to consider this a make-or-break year for Garrett, who missed the playoffs with 8-8 records

MCCOLLUM from 8A “I liked dealing with them because I’ve got their money in my billfold,” said Hutchcraft in parting. If you get a chance to see the rebroadcast, check it out. It’s hilarious. In the wake of the ESPY Awards, it seems appropriate for another batch of “David Citations,” for the interesting, zany and just plain weird in sports: A NEW MEANING TO NAKED REVERSE: This statement was released Friday by

HENRY from 8A boys,” she said. “I knew everything about the offense. I knew the plays and when they were changes offenses. Sometimes, Dad would take me in the backyard and called the plays and explained them to me and we’d run them.” Those seeds began to take root as a college student when she fell in love with a football player. While a student at the University of Central Arkansas and a member of the school’s gymnastic team at the time, she had a summer job as a lifeguard at Conway Country Club. She encountered Cliff Henry when he regularly and playfully jumped in the pool after a round of golf. “Cliff played defense,” she said. “I knew a lot about offense, but I learned about defense from him.” She later worked for Sen. David Pryor in Washington, D.C. There she developed a connection with former UA offensive coordinator Don Breaux and his family through a friendship with his daughter. On weekends, she would often be a guest at the Breaux’s home in a Virginia suburb. Breaux was a top assistant for Joe Gibbs, head coach of the Wash-

in each of his two full seasons. Both ended with losses in finales to NFC East rivals with a playoff berth on the line. The owner and his coach shared a concertlike stage for nearly 40 minutes in what has become something of a summer tradition for Jones since he bought the team in 1989. Garrett had to duck out for the first team meeting of camp, and as he was walking off the stage, Jones was asked if it was fair to say Garrett’s job was on the line. Jones leaned into the microphone, said “no” in several ways and even suggested that he was looking beyond the two

years remaining on Garrett’s contract. “I look to the future with Jason and not just through his contract that we’re sitting here with right now,” Jones said. “But it is not what is implied when you say, ‘Well, this is an Armageddon year for him.’ It is not that with me.” The questions started as soon as the Cowboys overhauled their defensive staff a few weeks into the offseason, and not long after Jones said he was going to make things “uncomfortable” at team headquarters. Fueled by the comment, speculation centered on Garrett being a rubber

stamp for the firing of defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, the hiring of replacement Monte Kiffin and the decision to move play-calling duties from Garrett to Bill Callahan. Kiffin might not have helped things when he said his first phone calls were from the owner and his son, executive vice president Stephen Jones. Garrett had a stock answer for the “hot seat” issue all offseason: Everyone in the NFL is on it. The question for him Saturday was getting out of his personal .500 rut — and the team’s. The Cowboys are 128-128 going back to the start of the 1997 season.

Florida International football coach Ron Turner: “Early this morning, our football team had a workout and barbecue on Crandon Park Beach to conclude our summer conditioning program under the supervision of our strength and conditioning staff. “Following the workout, some of our athletes went to rinse off at a designated public shower area and a few of them made a poor decision and changed their clothes in public. I want to apologize to the community and anyone who was at the beach this

morning for this unfortunate incident.” THE SHADY SHOW: Host John Hamm said this about the ESPY Awards, “It’s the world’s largest gathering of people wearing sunglasses indoors.” BEST MOMENT RELIVED: The video of Jack Nebraska football team allowing young Jack Hoffman, who has a rare form of brain cancer, to score on a touchdown run during the Cornhuskers’ spring game. LETTERS FOR BULLDOGS TO FEAR: The only non-confer-

ence defeats by the Mississippi State baseball team last season were to teams with UCA in their initials and bears in their nickname — the UCA Bears and the national champion UCLA Bruins. A GOLDEN (BUT NOT STRIPED) ERA OF HOCKEY: The Nashville Predators of the National Hockey League have painted the ice at Bridgestone Arena gold/mustard yellow for the summer. (Sports columnist David McCollum can be reached at 505-1235 or david.mccollum@

ington Redskins. another person Henry grew to know and admire. “Looking back, I was building a network of connections not really knowing what they would lead to,” she said. It led to the first fruits of her dream after she graduated from law school and became an attorney. But first, another major step. She and Cliff raised two sons. David showed interest in the medical field and is a student at Davidson University. Joseph played tight end for Little Rock Central, then played for the Razorbacks when the coaching bug bit him. “I then saw things from a parent’s perspective,” Henry said. With her sons reaching adulthood, Henry decided that “I’m gonna do this (become an agent) now or it will never happen.” For two decades, she had been involved in about every type of contract negotiation — except NFL negotiation. As she studied to become an licensed advisor under a program initiated by the NFL Players Association, she discovered those negotiations were a different kind of multi-headed beast.” “There are a ton of rules and they are always

changing,” she said. “You have NFL rules, NCAA rules, state statutes, individual school rules and what I call the Lou Holtz Do Right Rules.” The latter has often proved the most difficult. “I’ve done things the old-fashioned way — build a business play and do it the right way,” she said. “I’m going to follow the rules and our firm is going to follow the rules. But that’s hard when not everybody does. We are going to go in the front door, not the back door.” But the relationships she developed through the years with those involved in sports has allowed her to build more relationships. She pays her way to the NFL Combine every year to network and find players who are a fit for her services. “I want high-character young men,” Hen-

ry said. “I tell them I expect them to do things the right way and to be honest and trustworthy. And I tell them they can expect the same things from me.” In a culture in which NFL players behaving badly has increased, she notes how quickly character issues rise to the surface in negotiations. “NFL teams are more attentive than ever to character issues,” she said. “And I remind me clients, they find out everything. There’s a huge investment of money and they make it a point to find out everything I can. “I got a call from an NFL scout about a player I represented. He was asking about a speeding ticket the player got, nothing more than that. But he knew about that speeding ticket before I knew. That’s how important character is for them.”

Sunday, July 21, 2013 — 9A

BRITISH from 8A about to change. The 40-year-old from England passed one big test when he outplayed Woods on another tough day at Muirfield for a 1-under 70 and grabbed a two-shot lead over Woods and Hunter Mahan, the only players still under par. “Even though I haven’t won a major, I know what it takes to win one,” said Westwood, who was at 3-under 210. “It’s just a case of going out there tomorrow and having the confidence in my game, which I’ve got. And putting it to the test.” Sunday figures to be the toughest test of all. Despite his late blunder by hitting into a bunker and making bogey on the par-5 17th, Woods held it together for a 72. Mahan matched the best score of the third round with a 68 and will play in the final group for the second straight major. “I’ve got 14 of these things, and I know what it takes to win it,” Woods said. “He’s won tournaments all over the world. He knows how to win golf tournaments. He’s two shots ahead and we’re going to go out there and both compete and play. It’s not just us two. There’s a bunch of guys who have a chance to win this tournament. And all of us need to really play well tomorrow to win it.” Westwood is the 54hole leader for the second time in his career. He will try to become only the eighth player dating to 1861 to capture his first major in his 40s. He was

hopeful the other close calls will serve him well, though the 40-year-old from England didn’t seem all that uptight about it. “I’m hoping it’s going to turn out differently because I haven’t won one yet and I’d like to win one,” Westwood said. “But what can you do? You can only do what you think is right and put all that practice and hard work you’ve done tomorrow, try not to get in your own way mentally and just focus on the job at hand and believe you’re good enough.” He was plenty good on another warm, sunny afternoon on a course that was noticeable softer but no less demanding. Woods lost his chance to get in the final group with one swing. Tied with Westwood as they played the par-5 17th into a stiff breeze off the Firth of Forth, Woods tried to hit 3-wood over a series of bunkers to allow for a simple wedge into the green. With his ball on the slightest slope, he got it up in the air just enough that the wind grabbed it and deposited the ball in the bunker. Woods had to blast out sideways and missed a 15-foot par putt. Woods twice had at least a share of the 36hole lead in majors a year ago and fell out of contention on Saturday. Despite the late bogey, he did well enough this time that he was only two shots behind. This is his best chance to end his fiveyear drought in the majors since the upheaval in his personal life at the end of 2009.