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October 7-13, 2011

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TEXAS VS. OU Happy Hour M-F 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Food Served 718 N. Buckner Blvd #108 • Dallas, TX 75218 until 2 a.m., 214-321-6979 Breakfast Sat/Sun starting @ 8 a.m.

sportspagedfw.com | The Sports Page | September 30-October 6, 2011

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AROUND THE AREA

LOCAL HAPPENINGS

SMU announces men's hoops schedule October 7-13, 2011 Volume 10, Issue 6 sportspagedfw.com

Team coming off first postseason bid since '99-'00 season

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AROUND THE AREA

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QUICK HITS

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RANGERS

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GOLF

SMU RELEASES HOOPS SCHEDULE

SPORTS NEWS AND NUGGETS

FISHER A REALLY BAD WEEK FOR THE COWBOYS

LOOKING FORWARD TO THE ALCS

ROMO TAKES RISKS IN GOLF ALSO

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COVER STORY

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ROTATION

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THE TICKET WINDOW

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BAR/TUBE

TEXAS/OU

EVAN GRANT WITH THE MUSERS

Follow us on Twitter & Facebook twitter.com/spweekly facebook.com/sportspageweekly Publisher / Founder Dan McVicker dmcvicker@sportspagedallas.com Editor /Art Director/Staff Writer Scott Boyter sboyter@sportspagedallas.com

Contributing Writers Kate Delaney, Mike Fisher, Dic Humphrey, Tom Ward

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Cover Photography Patrick Meredith

To advertise in The Sports Page, Call the contacts above or 214.683.1469 For editorial comments/suggestions, e-mail sboyter@sportspagedallas.com Copyright 2011 Sports Page Weekly, Inc. All rights reserved. The Sports Page Weekly is published every week on Thursdays. Views expressed in The Sports Page Weekly are not necessarily the opinion of The Sports Page Weekly, its staff or advertisers. The Sports Page Weekly does not knowingly accept false or misleading editorial content or advertising, nor is The Sports Page Weekly responsible for the content or claims of any advertising or editorial in this publication. No content (articles, photographs, graphics) in The Sports Page Weekly may be used for reproduction without permission from the publisher. The SportsPage Weekly is available free of charge, limited to one copy per reader. Additional copies of The SportsPage Weekly may be purchased for $1.00, payable at The SportsPage Weekly’s office in advance. The SportsPage Weekly may be distributed only by The SportsPage Weekly’s authorized independent contractors or The SportsPage Weekly’s authorized distributors. No person may, without prior written permission of The SportsPage Weekly, take more than one copy of each SportsPage Weekly issue.

Special to TH E S P O RTS PAG E WE E K LY The SMU men's basketball team announced its 2011-12 schedule on Tu e s d a y. T h e M u s t a n g s p l a y 1 6 games in Dallas, including 14 dates at Moody Coliseum, The Showcase vs. Oklahoma State at the American Airlines Center on Dec. 28, and the D a l l a s C l a s s i c a t E l l i s D av i s Fieldhouse on Dec. 15. The Ponies open the season at home Nov. 11 and have a non-conference schedule that includes the Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off, a road contest at Mississippi on Jan. 3, and a home game against TCU on Feb. 8. In Conference USA, SMU hosts defending champion UAB in addition to regional rivals UTEP, Rice, Houston and Tulsa. The SMU men's basketball team enters 2011-12 following its most successful season in more than a decade. The Mustangs recorded their first 20-win season and first postseason bid since 1999-2000; fi n i s h i n g 2 0 - 1 5 a n d a d va n c i n g t o the CollegeInsider. com Tournament (CIT) semifinal. SMU had its most wins in Conference USA (8) while leading the league in field goal percentage (48.2, 7th NCAA), 3-point percentage (39.4, 13th NCAA) and free throw percentage (74.2, 38th NCAA). The SMU men's basketball team will host its sixth-annual Tip-Off D i n n e r a t t h e Pa r k C i t i e s H i l t o n Ballroom on Thursday, Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. TNT analyst and two-time N BA c h a m p i o n Ke n ny S m i t h w i l l serve as the keynote speaker. Coach Doherty will also preview the 201112 season on the Hilltop. Mustang fans can buy individual tickets for $100 or sponsor a table for $750, which has nine seats including a coach or student-athlete. For sponsorship opportunities or to purchase t i c k e t s , c o n t a c t J e ff L o c k h a r t a t 214-768-4314, lockhart@smu.edu. A l l S M U b a s ke t b a l l ga m e s a r e broadcast on the Mustangs Radio Network; which includes the flagship KAAM 770 AM in Dallas-Fort Worth. For ticket Information call 214-SMU-GAME (214-7684263),visit SMUMustangs.com, call t h e Ti c ke t m a s t e r C h a rg e - B y - Ph o n e line at 214-373-8000, or go to ticketmaster. com.

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2011-12 SMU Men's BB Schedule Date Opponent Time Nov. 11 McMurry 7 p.m. Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off Nov. 14 vs.Colorado St. 7 p.m. Nov. 15 at Stanford/ Fresno St. 7 p.m./10 p.m. Nov. 19 Florida Gulf Coast 1 p.m. Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off Nov. 21 Consolation Round Nov. 22 Consolation Round Nov. 23 Semifinal Nov. 25 Final/Consolation Nov. 27 Georgia Southern 2 p.m. Dec. 4 at Arkansas - Little Rock 2 p.m. Dallas Classic Dec. 15 at Jackson State 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19 at SE Missouri St. 7 p.m. Dec. 22 vs. Dallas Christian 7 p.m. Dec. 28 vs. Okla. St. (AAC) 5:30 p.m. Dec. 31 vs. Louisiana Tech 1 p.m. Jan. 3 at Mississippi (FSN) 8 p.m. Jan. 7 at Tulsa * 7 p.m. Jan. 11 vs. Rice * 7 p.m. Jan. 14 at UTEP * 8 p.m. Jan. 18 vs. Houston * 7 p.m. Jan. 21 at Memphis * 7 p.m. Jan. 25 at Tulane * 7 p.m. Jan. 28 Tulsa * (FSN) 2 p.m. Feb. 1 at East Carolina * 6 p.m. Feb. 4 vs. UCF * 2 p.m. Feb. 8 vs. TCU 7 p.m. Feb. 11 at Rice * 7 p.m. Feb. 15 UAB * 7 p.m. Feb. 18 vs. Marshall * 2 p.m. Feb. 22 vs. Tulane * 7 p.m. Feb. 25 at Houston * 7 p.m. Feb. 29 at So.Miss * 7 p.m. Mar. 3 vs. UTEP * 2 p.m. Mar. 7-10 Conference USA Championship/Memphis, Tenn. * Conference USA opponent All campus home games at Moody Col.



SPORTSPAGEDFW.COM

ONLINE POLL RESULTS

HOW WILL THE ALCS TURN OUT? *FROM 10/4/11

RANGERS IN 4 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10% RANGERS IN 5-7 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .30% NY/DET IN 4 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10% NY/DET IN 5-7 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50%

HOW WILL COWBOYS/PATRIOTS TURN OUT? *FROM 10/5/11

COWBOYS BY 1-9 POINTS . . . . . . . . . . .20% COWBOYS BY 10 POINTS OR MORE . . .20% PATRIOTS BY 1-9 POINTS . . . . . . . . . . . .40% PATRIOTS BY 10 POINTS OR MORE . . .20%

WEEKLY CALENDAR OCTOBER

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NO GAME SCHEDULED: Bye Week

PLAYOFFS ALCS schedule TBD

Stars vs. Blackhawks, 7:30 p.m., FSSW

Stars at Blackhawks, 7:30 p.m., Ch. 21

Stars vs. Coyotes, 5 p.m., FSSW

Stars vs. Coyotes, 7:30 p.m., FSSW


Quick Hits

The Metroplex is a sports fan's dream - great pro sports, college powerhouses and some of the best high school sports programs in the country and we deliver it all with typical Texas hospitality. -Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price on D/FW being ranked the No. 1 sports area in the U.S.

D/FW tops SN best sports cities list Special to The Sports Page Weekly METROPLEX GETS UNIQUE RECOGNITION Dallas/Fort Worth, with the NBA champion Mavericks, AL champion Rangers, undefeated Rose Bowl champion Horned Frogs and the home of Super Bowl XLV, is No. 1 in Sporting News' 18th annual Best Sports Cities rankings, presented by Gillette. A first-time winner, Dallas/Fort Worth dethroned 2010's No. 1, Chicago, a three-time winner and No. 4 in 2011's rankings. "The Metroplex is a sports fan's dream - great pro sports, college powerhouses and some of the best high school sports programs in the country - and we deliver it all with typical Texas hospitality,” said Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price. “When it comes to big-time sports, we've got plenty to cheer about and plenty to cheer for. With all due respect to Green Bay, I can safely say that the 'Titletown, USA' claim pretty much belongs to Fort Worth, Dallas and the North Texas region." Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said about bringing the NBA championship home to Dallas: “Of course the topper was winning the trophy this season. It was right out of Hollywood casting. A band of old rejects comes together to beat the self-proclaimed Dream Team of the NBA. Along the way we sweep the Lakers and beat the Thunder. No one saw it coming, which made it all the sweeter for Mavs and NBA fans everywhere.” “From the time I got here to where it's at now is night and day,” said Texas Rangers DH Michael Young, who

TEXAS LEGENDS NAME DEL HARRIS HEAD COACH The Texas Legends announced today the hiring of Del Harris-the most decorated coach in NBA D-League history. Harris, who was the team's General Manager in its inaugural 2010-11 season, will maintain his General Manager role. “It is with great pride that I am able to introduce to Legends Nation a true basketball legend as our head coach,” Legends co-owner Donnie Nelson commented. “Del is one of the most accomplished coaches in the history of basketball - and to be able to have him as the head coach of the Legends is a great privilege.” Harris takes over the head coaching responsibility from inaugural season head coach Nancy Lieberman, who was promoted to Assistant General Manager in July. The Legends qualified for the NBA D-League playoffs in their inaugural season, and also were the champions of the “Texas Cup” - taking home the prize over the Austin Toros, and Rio Grande Valley Vipers. “Donnie caught me at the right time,” Harris commented. “I had just come back from a really exciting time coaching the Dominican Republic National team with John Calipari and his staff. We developed a group who had never won a medal in major FIBA event into a quality team and they were able to win the bronze in difficult circumstances. I look forward to helping others who come through our program as players and coaches.”

made his debut with the Rangers in late 2000 and hasn't played elsewhere. “Our fans are really passionate about our teams. It was just a matter of our fans hopping on board with our baseball team. We had to make sure we gave them a reason to do it.” Rounding out the top 10 are No. 2 Boston, No 3. Philadelphia, No. 4 Chicago/Evanston, No. 5 New York, No. 6 Pittsburgh, No. 7 Atlanta, No. 8 Los Angeles, No. 9 Miami and No. 10 Tampa/St. Petersburg. Lorman, Mississippi rounds out the list at No. 271. This year's list is based on the 12 months from summer 2010 to summer 2011 and features 271 cities and towns in the United States and Canada. The rankings are based on a variety of factors, including each city's number of teams and their regular-season won-lost records, postseason appearances, bowl appearances and tournament bids, championships, applicable power ratings, attendance, fan fervor and more. The new Sporting News Magazine, featuring Texas

Harris has assisted in the development of such notable NBA players as Moses Malone, Eddie Jones, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O'Neal, Yao Ming, and Derrick Rose among others. “Del's ability to develop our players is going to be second-to-none,” Legends co-owner Evan Wyly said. “His basketball acumen will be a tremendous asset not only in terms of winning games, but also in giving our players the best opportunity for an NBA call-up. With Del, Spud, and Nancy in our front office, our players have a lot of

Ranger Michael Young, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and the TCU SuperFrog on the cover, hits newsstands later this week. In addition to the Best Sports Cities feature it also includes a conversation with Bud Selig, NASCAR'S best drivers of all time and a look at five pitchers to watch this postseason. Sporting News began its Best Sports City rankings in 1993. Past winners: 2010-Chicago 2009-Pittsburgh 2008-Boston 2007-Detroit 2006-Chicago 2005-Boston 2004-Boston 2003-Anaheim/Los Angeles 2002-Boston 2001-New York 2000-St. Louis 1999-New York 1998-Detroit 1997-Denver 1995-Denver 1994-Cleveland 1993-Chicago Note: There was no Best Sports City in 1996 as the ratings were expanded and refined.

resources at their disposal.” President of Basketball Operations Spud Webb rounds out the front office of the Legends, comprising the most dynamic front office in the NBA D-League. “Donnie and his great business staff have developed the Legends into what we think is the best NBA D-League operation,” Harris added. “Frisco should be attractive to players who have a great desire to get into the NBA.” The Legends recently announced that all center courtside seats for the 2011-12 season have been sold. Only a handful of premium seats remain, and performance opportunities such as halftime acts and national anthem choirs have also become very limited. Call 214-469-0822 or email info@TexLegends.com to inquire about season tickets and performance opportunities.

sportspagedfw.com | The Sports Page | October 7-13, 2011

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THE FISH

SPORTS TALK WITH MIKE FISHER

A historically bad week for the Cowboys On the field and off, frustration abounds

By Mike Fisher FISH fish@dallasbasketball.com The players were in Vegas. The owners were in Dallas. And the upcoming season? It's in limbo. Nine Things We've Learned About The NBA Lockout... It's been a historically difficult few days for the Dallas Cowboys. One Cowboys standout, I am told, strutted out to his Valley Ranch parking spot recently only to learn that his Porsche was gone, something about a few missed payments on the luxury ride. A former Cowboys standout, I am told, was attending Friday's Texas Rangers playoff game in peace but after relentless harassment from a mob of drunkards had to be physically restrained from perpetrating a one-on-four beatdown. And then came Sunday at Cowboys Stadium, the home team losing 34-20 to undefeated Detroit by gagging up a 27-3 second-half lead. Ah, the poor Cowboys. Losing cars. Losing tempers. Losing games. Assessing blame for an unprecedented collapse (not in a half-century of Cowboys football has such a lead been lost) is a simple thing for some. They point to the maddeningly mercurial Tony Romo, who tossed up a trio of second-half interceptions during a time when Dallas should've been able to eat clock, teach the upstart Lions a lesson, and move to 3-1. Instead, Dallas is a .500 team (not in itself a crime, as ultimately in this NFL most every team will be in that range) searching for solutions that go beyond Romo's erratic nature. Know that this ties the mark for the largest blown lead by a home team in NFL history. Know that this is the fifth largest lead blown in NFL history. Know that it takes 53 shovels to dig the Grand Canyon of blown leads. Now, does coach Jason Garrett need to shackle Romo to prevent him from throwing Dallas out of games? Yes. The fact that two of the second-half picks were returned

6 October 7-13, 2011 | The Sports Page | sportspagedfw.com

for defensive touchdowns (one of them by former Cowboy Bobby Carpenter, one of Romo's best friends) created a landslide effect for Detroit, but … yes. Garrett's stated stance on Romo is the right one: "Tony's been in these situations where he's made a lot of plays,'' Garrett said. “Sometimes, they can go against you. That's the nature of playing quarterback in this league. He knows that I believe in him. Our staff believes in him. His teammates believe in him." But privately? When it comes to spending the next two weeks (including the bye) prepping for a trip to New England? Privately, Garrett faces the tricky challenge of keeping his QB's confidence high while at the same time denying the free-wheeling QB his usual carte blanche. Meanwhile, Jerry Jones needs to quit saying things like, "As Tony goes, we'll go.'' The owner is attempting to give Romo a verbal butt-pat. But you know, the Packers don't say that about Aaron Rodgers. The Patriots don't say that about Tom Brady. The Eagles don't say that about Michael Vick. How is Tony Romo more “special'' or more “central'' to his team than those guys are to theirs? PLENTY OF OTHER SHOVELS Now, to the other shovel-wielders. Is this young offensive line capable of

grinding out a win with Felix Jones playing a more central role? It's going to have to be. Is Mat McBriar and the punting game capable of doing its part when it comes to winning the territorial tug-o-war? It's going to have to be as well. How about if Rob Ryan's defense quits concerning itself with being “colorful'' and opts instead for bland competence? "We'll be better from this, I know that,'' Romo said. “It's just sucks right now.'' Romo will be better than this if he is better placed in positions to succeed. Romo's gun-slinging heroics are, at this point, best-suited for trying to bring Dallas back from behind, when there is less to lose. But again, he isn't alone in having to shoulder blame for the sort of outcome that separates a future playoff team from a non-contender. The idiocy of questioning the greatness of Detroit receiver Calvin Johnson is a Ryan family trait; when Rob previewed this game by suggesting that the unstoppable Johnson was inferior to Dallas pass-catchers Miles Austin and Dez Bryant - the defensive coordinator was simply bowing to his DNA. It's the sort of entertainingly stupid statement that his brother habitually makes as the Jets boss and that their father Buddy used to make in Chicago and Philly. "I am just glad the third best receiver on their team… was on our team," Lions coach Jim Schwartz said, reflecting on Ryan's taunt - and on the fact that Johnson finished with eight catches, 96 yards and, for the NFL record-tying fourth straight week, two touchdowns… both of those, obviously, coming in the late-going. These Cowboys are wildly entertaining. There is no denying that. From Romo to Ryan, from out in the parking lot to in a watering hole at the Ballpark, from this end zone and then quickly to that one, this is a terribly colorful and newsworthy 2-2 team, both losses the result of late-game foibles. It's too bad, because a little less “terribly colorful'' would likely equal a little less losing. Follow the Fish on twitter at FishSports and at www.DallasBasketball.com.

The Cowboys' sacrifice of a 27-3 lead ties the NFL record for home-team collapses. Here are some other embarrassing records: 10

Most Career Interceptions: Brett Favre

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Most Career Fumbles: Warren Moon

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Most Career Baseball Ejections: Bobby Cox

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Fewest NBA Wins In A Season: 1972-73 Sixers with nine wins Most NHL Penalty Minutes By A Goalie: Ron Hextall

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Most AL Losses In A Season: 118-Loss Tigers of 2003

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Most Errors In A Baseball Career: Herman Long

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Worst NFL Team: The 016 Buccaneers Of 1976

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Most Technical Fouls In An NBA Season: Rasheed Wallace

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Biggest College Football Loss: Georgia Tech 222, Cumberland College 0


MLB

RANGERS

Rangers make a return trip to the ALCS Vegas taking note of team's roll By Dic Humphrey C O R R E S P O N D E NT dic.humphrey@yahoo.com Te x a s c l i n c h e d t h e D iv i s i o n Series three games to one, eliminating Ta mpa Bay with a 4-3 win in St. Petersburg Tuesday afternoon. For the second year in a row, the Rangers advance to the American League Championship S e r i e s ( A L C S ) t h a t b eg i n s t h i s Saturday in a location that had yet to be determined as of press t i m e . T h e Ya n k e e s a n d Ti g e r s were tied two games apiece with the deciding Game 5 to be played T h u r s d a y n i g h t . I f t h e Ya n ke e s won, the Rangers would travel to New York to start the series. If the Ti gers won, Detroit would be in Arlington to open the ALCS. The Division Series got off to an auspicious start when the Rays shut out the Rangers 9-0 last F r i d a y. Ta m p a m a n a g e r J o e Maddon, to the surprise of many, started rookie left-hander Matt M o o r e a g a i n s t Tex a s . M o o r e i s regarded as the best pitching prospect in the minor leagues, but had pitched a grand total of 9 1/3 Major League innings before the game. He was m a g n i fi c e n t though, allowing two hits - a sing l e a n d a d o u b l e o ff J o s h H a m i l t o n ' s b a t - o v e r s ev e n shutout innings. Ft. Worth Brewer grad and former Baylor AllAmerican Kelly Shoppach had a c a r e e r d a y, b a n g i n g o u t t h r e e hits, two of which were home runs, scoring three times and driving in five runs.

A BIG BOUNCE-BACK Texas was squarely behind the eight-ball Saturday as the Rays trotted out “Big Game James� Shields to start Game 2. He, t oo, was m a g n i fi c e n t for three innings, taking a 3-0 lead into the f o u r t h . H ow ev e r, S h i e l d s h a d control problems, and the Ranger b a t s c a m e a l ive i n t h a t f o u r t h inning, b atting around and taking a 5-3 lead. They held on to win 86 to send the series to St. Petersburg tied at a game apiece. A year ago, these two teams faced each other in the Division Series with the visiting team winning every game. Saturday's win was thus the seventh ALDS game between the two teams, but the first won by the home team over the two series. In St. Petersburg, Texas took a pair of 4-3 wins as the visiting team continued to dominate. Colby Lewis pitched a magnificent game Monday night. He is now 4-0 with a 1.67 ERA in postseason play for the Rangers. Monday's game lasted almost four

hours in one of the tightest, tensest games in m e m o r y. M i k e N a p o l i , perhaps the MVP of this team, put the Rangers ahead with a two-run home run, and Josh Hamilton plated two more with a single to right as Texas scored all i t s r u n s i n t h e s ev e n t h inning. The outcome was always in doubt until Adrian Beltre started an around the horn double play in the ninth to end the game. Beltre started the series 0-9 until finally getting a hit Monday n i g h t . Tu e s d a y t h o u g h , h e w a s t h e o ff e n s iv e player of the game, if not the series when he clouted three solo home runs in the second, fourth and seventh innings. He is the first player to hit three long balls in a division series, and only the sixth player to hit three in a postseason game. He joins an elite group as three of the other five Babe Ruth, R eggie Jackson and George Brett - are in the Hall of Fame. Starting pitchers Derek Holland, Lewis and Matt Harrison e a r n e d w i n s i n t h e fi n a l t h r e e games, while closer Neftali Feliz saved each one. Texas ended up hitting .211 with 16 runs scored and six home runs in the series. Tampa Bay actually out-hit and outscored the Rangers at .231 with 23 runs scored, but the Rays' only double-digit hit game and nine of their runs came in their Game 1 win. Those batting averages and low runs scored totals a r e evi d e n c e t h a t b o t h t e a m s h ave

very good pitching staffs. PMORE TURNOVER THAN YOU MIGHT THINK T h e o ff e n s iv e c o r e o f t h i s Ranger team is similar to last y e a r ' s Wo r l d S e r i e s p a r t i c i p a n t . Adrian Beltre and Mike Napoli are the two new starting position players, essentially replacing Vladimir Guerrero and Benji M o l i n a . T h e p i t c h i n g s t a ff h a s sustained the most change from last year. Derek Holland and Matt H a r r i s o n r e p l a c e C l i ff L e e a n d To mmy Hunter in the four-man postseason starting rotation. Mike Adams, Mike Gonzalez and Ko j i U e h a r a a r e t h e k e y n ew bullpen additions. Yo r v i t To r r e a l b a , E n d y C h av e z , C r a i g G e n t r y, E s t e b a n G e r m a n a n d Scott Feldman are other players on this roster that were not with Texas in the playoffs last year. That totals 11 new faces, more t h a n 4 0 p e r c e n t o f t h e p l a y o ff roster, compared with 2010's. Texas finished the regular season winning the final six games, won 19 of 25 games in September, and won a club record 96 for the year. They have now added three more wins in four games in the ALDS to make this the second-most successful Ranger team in history. This team has not lost even two consecutive games since August. It's a serious roll that Las Vegas has noticed, a s t h e R a n g e r s a r e n ow 8 - 5 favorites to win the World Series. Eight more wins this month will make this the most successful Ranger team ever. See more of Dic Humphrey's Texas Ranger notes at www.rangerrap.com.

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214-683-1469 sportspagedfw.com | The Sports Page | October 7-13, 2011

7


GOLF

WITH TOM WARD

Tony Romo's not only risky on the field He lives on the edge on the golf course as well

By Tom Ward I N STR U CTO R EXTRAO R D I NAI R E tompward@sbcglobal.net This week's tip involves the artistry of After another incredible debacle by the Cowboys losing, to the Detroit Lions after being up by 24 points, Tony Romo is back on the hot seat yet again. In a sport where you are buoyed by teammates it's hard not to isolate Romo this time for the meltdown that let the Lions back in the game. Listen, I respect any athlete in any sport for trying their best to win. However, sometimes using common sense instead of trying to be heroic is the best way to get the job done. Romo will take the heat and deserves it, but Romo and his coaches should have taken a page from the young Lions QB Matthew Stafford and just thrown the ball away when something wasn't there. How does all of this talk about football make any correlation to golf? Well, Romo is a big golf enthusiast and nearly a scratch golfer. He's gotten a lot of flack about all the time he spends on the golf course when rabid Cowboy fans think he should be working on his football skills. In my opinion, though, when the season is over a player can do anything they want and many players hit the links to play. The point I want to make here is if you look at how Romo plays the game of golf it will help to shine a light on the mentality he exhibits on the football field. Over the years I taught a lot of professional athletes who have won Super

Bowls, NBA titles, World Series and Stanley Cups. All of those great athletes have tremendous skills in their respective sports and wanted to stay competitive when their careers where over by playing golf. IT DOESN'T TRANSLATE Many of the bigger and stronger athletes would try to muscle and kill the ball because of their size. They quickly found out the golf ball doesn't care how big you are. These athletes have applied the same mindset and attitude they have in their particular sport, but that doesn't translate too well when it comes to hitting that little white ball. There is a great saying that goes, “sports build character.” That statement is only half true because sports can also reveal character. How a player responds under adversity is the true test of his or her internal fortitude. In golf, outside of your caddy (if you use one) you don't have any teammates; you're the person making the swings. In the past few years Romo has attempted to qualify for the U.S. Open and the Byron Nelson a few times with no success. He did once make it to the sectional qualifier for the U.S. Open only to shoot in the 80s and miss by quite a large margin. He plays in a number of pro-ams like a lot of other high profile athletes and celebrities do; it's a fun, relaxed format. The past few years he's been in the hunt to win the biggest celebrity tournament called the American Century Championship, which is played at Lake Tahoe and shown on NBC. This past summer he was in position to overtake soap star actor Jack Wagner, who was in the lead going into the final round.

Wagner was leaking oil coming down the stretch paired with Romo. Just when it looked like Romo would pull out the win after Wagner hit is ball into the pond on the 18th hole, Romo, well, he “pulled a Romo”. He proceeded to hit is 8-iron into the pond guarding the front of the green from 165 yards out. His comment was, “I needed to be aggressive on the shot to have any chance.” I've witnessed a lot of golf pros who let their ego get in the way and thought they could pull off a difficult shot instead of playing safe. It's exhilarating to hit that one in a million shot, however that's why they call it that. Tony throwing the ball in tight spaces thinking he can make that play is like a golfer hitting to a sucker pin placement on the green surrounded by water or sand. It makes the highlight reels on SportsCenter when you pull it off, however, the better choice would be to hit the middle of the green and take your chances of making birdie from 15-20 feet. Why bring in other scenarios that can get you a double bogey or worse and lose the tournament? What's heartbreaking relating it to golf terminology is like watching a golfer hit the green in two on a long Par 5 and then proceed to four-putt. Maybe there was something about Romo that we've overlooked from his past as a gunslinger. He wasn't drafted in the NFL out of a small college and sat on the bench for a few years before he got his chance. I think everyone likes a feel-good story of an underdog that comes out of nowhere to lead his team to victory, and the public soaked up Tony's act in the beginning. He's become a polarizing player here for many Cowboy fans, however the clock is ticking and the reality about the kind of player he truly is has been slapping even diehard fans in the face.

In golf lingo, he's on the back nine of his career and running out of holes to play and has put himself a few shots behind. WHAT GOOD IS POTENTIAL WITHOUT PERFORMANCE? The world is full of players with potential and promise like Romo. Last Sunday Tony hit some balls out of bounds off the tee, so to speak. Instead of taking his medicine and getting the ball back in play he continued to keep trying to hit the big driver where all he had to do way lay up with a safe shot. Playing any sport at its highest level is not about who hits the occasional great shot here and there. No, it's all about being consistent and who makes the fewest mistakes. Jason Garrett has to be accountable as well because he's the play caller, but remember he was a lifetime backup QB and maybe he's living vicariously through Romo. That is the problem with athletes like Romo; he doesn't know his limits and obviously the people working with him at Valley Ranch don't know either because they continue to allow this behavior to go on without any ramifications. I think it was Lee Trevino who once said, ”There are two things in life that don't exist very long. That's a dog that chases cars and a pro who putts for par.” The way Romo continues to play with his risky behavior is going to have him making some spectacular birdies and eagles. But it also invites the double and triple bogies as well. Tom Ward can be reached at www.TeeTimewithTom.com.

sportspagedfw.com | The Sports Page | October 7-13, 2011

8


THE SPORTS PAGE WEEKLY’S PIGSKIN PROGNOSTICATORS Each week, we’ll ask some area media members to put their forecasting skills to the test. This season, TSPW publisher Dan McVicker, Scott Boyter, editor of TSPW, The mysterious Red Root, TSPW columnist Vance Gonzales and Roger Emrich, KRLD-AM Sports and oilman and former Texas Tech wide receiver Travis Price will pick vs. the line.

GAMES - 10/7- 10/10 California at Oregon (-24) O k l a h o m a ( - 9 . 5 ) v s . Te x a s Florida at LSU (-13.5) Missouri (-3.5) at Kansas State M i a m i ( F L ) a t Vi r g i n i a Te ch ( - 7. 5 ) Au b u r n a t Ar ka n s a s ( - 1 0 ) Te x a s A & M ( - 8 ) a t Te x a s Te ch O h i o S t a t e a t N e b r a s ka ( - 1 1 ) Te n n e s s e e a t P i t t s b u r g h ( - 3 ) Seattle at NY Giants (-10) C i n c i n n a t i a t J a ck s o n v i l l e ( - 2 . 5 ) New Orleans (-6) at Carolina Oakland at Houston (-6) Philadelphia (-2.5) at Buffalo NY Jets at New England (-9.5) G r e e n B a y ( - 5 . 5 ) a t At l a n t a Chicago at Detroit (-6)

LAST WEEK RECORD TO DATE

25

TOP DAN MCVICKER

SCOTT BOYTER

THE RED ROOT

VANCE GONZALES

ROGER EMRICH

TRAVIS PRICE

Oregon Oklahoma LSU Missouri Virginia Tech Arkansas Texas A&M Nebraska Tennessee NY Giants Cincinnati New Orleans Houston Philadelphia NY Jets Atlanta Chicago

Oregon Oklahoma LSU Kansas State Miami (FL) Auburn Texas Tech Ohio State Pittsburgh NY Giants Jacksonville New Orleans Oakland Philadelphia NY Jets Atlanta Detroit

Oregon Texas Florida Kansas State Miami (FL) Auburn Texas Tech Ohio State Tennessee NY Giants Cincinnati New Orleans Oakland Philadelphia NY Jets Green Bay Chicago

Oregon Oklahoma LSU Kansas State Virginia Tech Auburn Texas A&M Ohio State Pittsburgh Seattle Jacksonville New Orleans Oakland Philadelphia NY Jets Green Bay Detroit

Oregon Texas LSU Missouri Virginia Tech Arkansas Texas Tech Nebraska Pittsburgh NY Giants Cincinnati New Orleans Houston Buffalo New England Green Bay Detroit

Oregon Oklahoma LSU Missouri Virginia Tech Arkansas Texas A&M Nebraska Tennessee NY Giants Cincinnati New Orleans Houston Philadelphia NY Jets Atlanta Chicago

12-5 33-31 (.516)

12-5 36-28 (.562)

12-5 8-9 34-30 (.531) 31-33 (.484)

10-7 35-29 (.547)

8-9 31-33 (.484)

RK 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25

TEAM LSU Alabama Oklahoma Wisconsin Boise State Stanford Oklahoma St. Clemson Oregon Texas Georgia Tech Arkansas Michigan Nebraska Auburn Florida Illinois West Virginia Kansas State S. Carolina Arizona State Virginia Tech Florida State Michigan St. Baylor

RECORD 5-0 5-0 4-0 5-0 4-0 4-0 4-0 5-0 3-1 4-0 5-0 4-1 5-0 4-1 4-1 4-1 5-0 4-1 4-0 4-1 4-1 4-1 2-2 4-1 3-1

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sportspagedfw.com | The Sports Page | October 7-13, 2011

11


COVER STORY

TEXAS/OU

It does, indeed, seem like old times in Dallas Oklahoma, Texas scrap for the 106th time

Seems like old times… That song title from the 1930s is particularly apropos for the 106th all-time meeting of Oklahoma and Texas (their 16th as members of the Big 12 Conference) and the 83rd consecutive bout on the grounds of the State Fair of Texas. The reasons for nostalgia? With the ever-changing landscape in recent weeks regarding conferences, it could be the final meeting of the teams in the Big 12, or it could be the continuation of a storied rivalry if the conference remains together. The AT&T Red River Rivalry also could decide the eventual national champion. In 11 different seasons from 1950-2005, the eventual BCS or wire service national titlist emerged from this encounter. And with Oklahoma No. 3 nationally and Texas No. 11 in this week's national polls, fans can hearken to the Fabulous '40s-Enlightening '80s when virtually every season produced a battle of Top 20 or even Top 10 powerhouses between the Longhorns and Sooners. Previous Red River Rivalries have seen future Texas head coach Darrell Royal starring as a Sooner All-America back, officials being accosted and even assaulted after close games, inebriated (and even some sober) fans throwing objects as large as couches off balconies out of hotel windows onto Commerce Street in downtown Dallas after a night of taunting the opposition, and even a “friendly” media luncheon from locales of Casa Dominguez (R.I.P.), Eddie Deen's, Two Rows, and now Edison's restaurants where margaritas and flour tortillas flowed like rivers and manna in the desert. And the Nos. 3 and 11 ratings are not atypical of the long and glorious history between these powerhouse programs. OU has been in the national polls on game week in 12 of the last 13 meetings after a rare, four-year Top 25 drought from 1996-99 for the Sooners. UT enters the fracas with 13 consecutive years of national rankings (since 1999) under ultra-successful head coach Mack Brown after a 1986-93 lapse (longest dry spell for the ratings in Red River Rivalry annals for the Longhorns) from the wire service or BCS surveys.

COURTESY:PATRICK MEREDITY/UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS

By Bo Carter C O R R E S P O N D E NT Scarter5@twu.edu

After Saturday against Oklahoma, we’ll have a whole lot better idea of where the Longhorns stand as a team.

TANTALIZING TIDBITS A bit of additional trivia for the Sooner and Longhorn diehards: -In 61 of the last 66 contests (including 2011), at least one of the teams has been ranked among the Top 25 nationally at game time. -Before the Longhorns and Sooners moved the rivalry to Dallas permanently in 1929 (just before the great Stock Market Crash of '29) to coincide with the second Saturday of the Texas State Fair, Texas met Vanderbilt six times between 1922 and '28 at Fair Park on the gridiron. Vandy actually has a 4-2-1 edge over UT in contests played in Dallas or Austin, but they ended that series in 1928. -Texas is 4-2 in the 2005-10 meetings between the Red River rivals. OU captured five consecutive games from 200004. The longest dominance in the series has been eight games twice (1922-32 and 1958-65 by the Longhorns) and six consecutive victories by Oklahoma from 1952-57. Texas leads the all-time series 59-41-5 and 47-37-4 in 88 tussles in Dallas. The teams last faced off outside Fair Park in 1923 in Austin with UT prevailing, 26-14. -The squads squared off nine times at old Fair Park Stadium in Dallas before meeting at new Fair Park Stadium (which became Cotton Bowl Stadium in 1937 after the Jan. 1, 1937, Cotton Bowl clash between TCU and Marquette) in 1932. Stadium capacity at virtually the same location has increased from roughly 10,000 in 1912 to 92,100 in 2008. -Current head coaches Bob Stoops (13331 for a .811 winning percentage - all at

12 October 7-13, 2011 | The Sports Page | sportspagedfw.com

Oklahoma since 1999) of OU and Mack Brown (137-34 at Texas with a .802 winning percentage since 1998, 213-108-1 over 28 seasons) are headed toward certain NFF College Hall of Fame coaching induction. Their combined 270 wins in 27 total seasons at their current assignments are the most ever by facing Red River Rivalry mentors over that span. Of note, UT's Brown was offensive coordinator for Oklahoma in 1984 when the teams tied, 15-15. -Previous NFF College Hall of Fame coaches who have glared across the field from one another are UT's D.X. Bible and Darrell Royal along with OU's Bennie Owen, Biff Jones, Jim Tatum, Bud Wilkinson, and Barry Switzer. AS FAR AS THIS GAME GOES… In the present with a 4-0 Oklahoma squad (1-0 in the Big 12 with a key win over Missouri) and 4-0 Texas team (1-0 in the league after thumping Iowa State 3714 last week in Ames) laying it all on the line, there are different schools of thought among the seasoned coaching staffs. OU goes with record-setting QB Landry Jones (already 111-of-155 passing for 1,447 yards and 10 TDs) to favorite wideout Ryan Broyles (38 catches for 476 yards and six scores) offensively. DBs Javon Harris and Aaron Colvin and LB Tom Wort pace a defensive unit with tons of savvy, and Oklahoma has dedicated the season to late LB Austin Box with commemorative No. 12 decals and a special No. 12 jersey worn by one of the team members each week. Texas has relied on “quarterback by committee” with freshman QB David Ash drawing his first college start against ISU in the loop road win and Case McCoy and

Garrett Gilbert also sporting ample playing time. UT special teams have had a direct hand in the scoring outcome of two of the four victories, and kicker Justin Tucker is a threat to hit long-range field goals near he end of a tight decision. Both coaches realize the high stakes of this encounter, and they just happen to be the last two taskmasters from either school (Stoops in 2000 and Brown in 2005) to guide their teams to BCS titles. Stoops, in fact, has had the Sooners in BCS bowls in eight of the last 11 seasons while Brown has taken UT squads to four BCS encounters since 2004 (including the Longhorns' first appearance in a Rose Bowl game in both Jna. 2005 and '06). JUST ANOTHER GAME? “Oklahoma has a ton of talent,” Brown began, “and I think Landry Jones is a tremendous player. In my estimation, he should be the leader for the Heisman (Trophy). Last year they got out on is very quickly with two touchdowns, and caught us off balance. We need to get that corrected before Saturday.” “Texas is another game on our schedule,” Stoops said. “Missouri - that's also a big game. Going down to Florida State, playing and winning wasn't an easy road. We respect every team on our schedule, and we respect Texas most this week. This definitely is a game that sets the tone for the season and one you can build upon for the rest of the season.” Regardless of philosophy, both these schools have this weekend marked in red or orange on their calendars, and anticipation is building for another probable classic in the 100-plus-game series. The last three meetings have racked up a total of 177 points and more chills and thrills than the scariest ride at the State Fair of Texas.


SPORTS SHORTS

WITH KATE DELANEY

Two different sports tales in the same city Rangers way up while the Cowboys are way down By Kate Delaney S P E C IAL C O NTR I B UTO R katesdelaney@gmail.com They're back! Yep, the Rangers knocked off the Rays, 4-3, to move onto the American League Championship Series with three big swings. Adrian Beltre hit solo homers in the second, fourth and seventh innings to make the history books in the game four ALDS clinching victory. He is the third player to hit three solo homers in a postseason game and he did it on his first swing of the bat in all of those innings. In Latin there is a saying - “omne trium perfectum,” which means everything perfect comes in threes - and he certainly embodied that phrase at Tropicana Field. So far he has proven he is worth every penny of his six-year, $96 million dollar deal. Thanks, Boston!

Off-season deals are proving to be part of the difference for the Rangers both in the regular season and so far in the postseason. Be honest; did you know much about Mike Napoli before he became a Texas Ranger? The catcher-first baseman played his first five years in the Majors with the Los Angeles Angels before being traded first to Toronto and then to the Rangers. In the regular season he hit .320 with 30 homers and 75 RBI and you could say he was the MVP of the ALDS series. How about his two-run single in a five-run fourth inning for the Rangers that helped ice the 8-6 win last Saturday? The fans couldn't get enough after he fouled pitch after pitch and seeing his patience pay off the crowd was screaming, his name in unison, “Nap-o-li, Nap-o-li”. It happened again in the fifth when he threw out B.J. Upton trying to steal third base. There was one scary moment during Tuesday's ALDS game when Ray Sean Rodriguez bowled over Napoli running from first base on a double as Nap tried to

tag him. The medical staff checked him twice on the field and in the dugout to make sure he was okay. No signs of concussion - thank goodness. If it had been serious it would have dampened the celebration in the visiting clubhouse afterwards and Nap might have missed a well-deserved champagne and ginger ale bath. MEANWHILE, ACROSS THE STREET… There certainly weren't any celebrations going on in the Cowboys' locker room after Sunday's debacle against the Lions. Did they really blow a 24-point lead or was that just a nightmare I had the other night? Tony Romo once again proved why no lead is safe with him as quarterback of the Cowboys. He throws two interceptions that were returned for touchdowns and his third pick with less than five minutes to go set up Detroit's winning score. This was the worst collapse in Cowboy history.

This is the second time this season we've seen big leads blow to smithereens by Romo. Dallas had a 14-point advantage over the Jets with 12 minutes left in the season opener as you'll recall and tossed an interception that led to a game-winning field goal and a 27-24 loss. He might make the NFL's list as the third all-time QB in the passer ratings category but stats don't win games. He has to find a way to protect these leads! Not everyone has lost faith in Romo, by the way, including Mavs superstar Dirk Nowitzki who tweeted this after the game. “Dear Tony Romo. Don't worry about all the critics. I heard that same garbage for a long time. Keep working hard and keep improving.” Let's hope Romo figures it out during this bye week. Kate Delaney hosts "America Tonight," which airs from 11p.m. - 2a.m. on KKGM 1630AM.

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COLLEGE & NFL GAMES OCTOBER - 6-10

THE SPREAD OPEN CLOSE SCORE

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6 COLLEGE FOOTBALL 301 CALIFORNIA 8:00PM 302 OREGON FRIDAY, OCTOBER 7 305 BOISE STATE 8:00PM 306 FRESNO STATE SATURDAY, OCTOBER 8 COLLEGE FOOTBALL 307 OKLAHOMA 11:00AM 308 TEXAS 309 ILLINOIS 1:30PM 310 INDIANA 31 1VANDERBILT 6:00PM 312 ALABAMA 313 BOSTON COLLEGE 2:00PM 314 CLEMSON 315 CONNECTICUT 11:00AM 316 WEST VIRGINIA 317 MISSISSIPPI STATE 11:00AM 318 UAB 319 IOWA 2:30PM 320 PENN STATE 321 PITTSBURGH 2:30PM 322 RUTGERS 323 MINNESOTA 11:00AM 324 PURDUE 325 LOUISVILLE 11:00AM 326 NORTH CAROLINA 327 CENTRAL MICHIGAN 2:30PM 328 NC STATE 329 MEMPHIS 11:30AM 330 RICE 331 ARMY 12:00PM 332 MIAMI OHIO 333 BOWLING GREEN 1:00PM 334 WESTERN MICHIGAN 335 TEMPLE 1:00PM 336 BALL STATE

-24 -21

-9.5

-14.5

-29

-21

-20 -17

-3.5 -7

-11

-14.5

-11.5

-21 -2

-11 -9.5

OPEN CLOSE SCORE

337 ARIZONA STATE 2:30PM 338 UTAH 339 SAN JOSE STATE 9:15PM 340 BYU 341 EASTERN MICHIGAN 2:00PM 342 TOLEDO 343 OHIO 2:30PM 344 BUFFALO 345 KENT STATE 2:30PM 346 NORTHERN ILLINOIS 347 AUBURN 6:00PM 348 ARKANSAS 349 MARYLAND 11:00AM 350 GEORGIA TECH 351 COLORADO 6:30PM 352 STANFORD 353 GEORGIA 6:00PM 354 TENNESSEE 355 MIAMI FLORIDA 2:30PM 356 VIRGINIA TECH 357 AIR FORCE 2:30PM 358 NOTRE DAME 359 SOUTHERN MISS 2:30PM 360 NAVY 361 UNLV 3:00PM 362 NEVADA 363 MARSHALL 6:00PM 364 CENTRAL FLORIDA 365 LOUISIANA TECH 4:00PM 366 IDAHO 367 ARIZONA 2:30PM 368 OREGON STATE 369 KANSAS 2:30PM 370 OKLAHOMA STATE 371 MICHIGAN 6:00PM 372 NORTHWESTERN

-4

-12.5

-21 -8.5

-17

-10

-14

-29.5 -1

-7.5

-15.5

-2.5

-20.5

-18 -4

-1.5

-31.5 -7

OPEN CLOSE SCORE

373 EAST CAROLINA 6:00PM 374 HOUSTON 375 IOWA STATE 6:00PM 376 BAYLOR 377 KENTUCKY 11:20AM 378 SOUTH CAROLINA 379 FLORIDA STATE 11:30AM 380 WAKE FOREST 381 TEXAS A&M 6:00PM 382 TEXAS TECH 383 MISSOURI 2:30PM 384 KANSAS STATE 385 SYRACUSE 7:00PM 386 TULANE 387 WYOMING 7:00PM 388 UTAH STATE 389 FLORIDA 2:30PM 390 LSU 391 OHIO STATE 7:00PM 392 NEBRASKA 393 WASHINGTON STATE 9:30PM 394 UCLA 395 TCU 9:30PM 396 SAN DIEGO STATE

-9.5

-15.5

-21 -12

-8.5

-3

-10

-11

-13.5

-11

-3.5 -4

397 FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL -20 1:00PM 398 AKRON 399 TROY -6.5 6:00PM 400 UL - LAFAYETTE 401 ARKANSAS STATE -2.5 6:00PM 402 UL - MONROE 403 FLORIDA ATLANTIC 6:30PM 404 NORTH TEXAS -4

OPEN CLOSE SCORE

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 9 NFL FOOTBALL 405 KANSAS CITY CHIEFS 12:00PM 38.5 406 INDIANAPOLIS COLTS 407 ARIZONA CARDINALS 12:00PM 45 408 MINNESOTA VIKINGS 409 PHILADELPHIA EAGLES 12:00PM 49.5 410 BUFFALO BILLS 411 OAKLAND RAIDERS 12:00PM 48.5 412 HOUSTON TEXANS 413 NEW ORLEANS SAINTS 12:00PM 52 414 CAROLINA PANTHERS 415 CINCINNATI BENGALS 12:00PM 37 416 JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS 417 TENNESSEE TITANS 12:00PM 39.5 418 PITTSBURGH STEELERS 419 SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 12:00PM 43 420 NEW YORK GIANTS 421 TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS 3:05PM 41 422 SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS 423 NEW YORK JETS 3:15PM 49.5 424 NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 425 SAN DIEGO CHARGERS 3:15PM 46 426 DENVER BRONCOS 427 GREEN BAY PACKERS 7:30PM 53 428 ATLANTA FALCONS MONDAY, OCTOBER 10 NFL FOOTBALL 429 CHICAGO BEARS 7:35PM 47.5 430 DETROIT LIONS

-2.5

-2.5 -2.5

-6 -6

-2.5

-3.5

-10

-3

-9.5 -4

-6

-6

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❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ DOLPHINS SCORE:

17.

Name Address City, State ZIP Phone E-mail

USC Trojans at California Golden Bears South Carolina Gamecocks at Mississippi State Bulldogs Baylor Bears at Texas A&M Aggies LSU Tigers at Tennessee Volunteers Oklahoma State Cowboys at Texas Longhorns Ohio State Buckeyes at Illinois Fighting Illini Florida Gators at Auburn Tigers Arizona State Sun Devils at Oregon Ducks San Francisco 49ers at Detroit Lions Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons Buffalo Bills at New York Giants Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins Houston Texans at Baltimore Ravens Cleveland Browns at Oakland Raiders Dallas Cowboys at New England Patriots New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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TICKET WINDOW Evan Grant talks with The Musers Redskins do some dirty dealing

Dunham & Miller Weekdays, 5:30-10 a.m. Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News with on with The Musers on Wednesday morning after the Rangers won the ALDS against Tampa. Here's some of how it went. George: The Rangers are back in the American League Championship Series after a 4-3 Game 4 win yesterday. A nice pitching performance from Matt Harrison, and even a better performance from Adrian Beltre. It's amazing looking

at what he's done since being back from injury isn't it? Evan: Yeah, he's been absolutely amazing. Even though Adrian had been to the playoffs before, it had been a long time ago in another life with the Dodgers back in 2004. I really think it took him a couple days to get used to the playoff atmosphere and the way things happen in the playoffs. He got a hit in Game 3 that broke a 0-9 for him, and I think that really helped him relax. Yesterday he attacked pitches early in the count and he crushed them. The second home run was absolutely ridiculous. Craig: Jon Daniels said earlier in the week, 'We liked adding Beltre and Napoli, because neither had played in the World Series, and we like adding veteran guys who still have that carrot to chase.' Boy, those guys look like they are still chasing carrots, don't they? Evan: JD's got a good point there, but I think it can work both ways. There are times when you want to add guys who have been to the World Series because

you need World Series experience, and there are times when you want to add guys who are hungry. I think it's clear that Beltre and Napoli are hungry guys. It means a lot to Adrian to be back in the playoffs. I don't think anybody has enjoyed the post-game celebrations more than he has, and I don't think there's been anybody who's been more driven than Napoli this year. They've been outstanding acquisitions. If you look at their salaries, it's basically what the Rangers would have paid for Cliff Lee last year. I don't think it necessarily means it was either get both of those guys or Cliff Lee, but I do think Beltre became their consolation prize when they lost out on Lee and Napoli was a swap of salaries with Frank Francisco. For the same money they would have paid for Lee, they've gotten two huge contributions and it's worked out with the rotation growing in the way that it has. George: Ok, so the Rangers are going to play who in the ALCS in your estimation?

Evan: With the series going back to New York and the way the Yankees rose up in Game 4, you kind of think it's going to be the Yankees at this time. I had a million questions on Twitter last night regarding who I'd rather play. My perspective is don't get too cute on anything. Forget about Verlander, forget about Sabathia, at this point you want to play the most possible games at home. It's easier to win at home, and harder to win on the road. I think the Rangers would probably rather match up against Detroit. I don't think they have any fear of the Yankees, but right now you have to give the edge to the Yankees. Craig: How was the celebration last night at Tropicana Field compared to last year's celebration down there when they closed out the ALDS? Evan: On the field more restrained, off the field the same kind of silliness. There was a lot of spraying and sneak attacks. The bulk of the bullpen seemed to work as one ninja-type group attacking various people.

sportspagedfw.com | The Sports Page | October 7-13, 2011

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1003 Collins St., Arlington sportspagedfw.com | The Sports Page | October 7-13, 2011

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