Morning Jolt: Will Redskins fire Zorn?

Monday, December 15
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Truth & Rumors
Will Redskins fire Zorn?
The only real issue left in the Redskins' season with two games left: whether Jim Zorn keeps his job beyond 2008. Neither Daniel Snyder nor Vinny Cerrato seemed immediately interested in touching the vote-of-confidence issue after Sunday's loss, and who can blame them? Even if the owner or executive vice president for football operations sound off in support of the newbie position coach they gambled on last February to replace Joe Gibbs, they give the issue credence and drive the story. Saying "Jim is our guy" means they had doubt in the first place. And the truth is, they have no intention of looking for another coach after last offseason. (Washington Post)
LaRussa stumps for McGwire for HOF
Given the chance to celebrate and comment on Rickey Henderson's appearance on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time, St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa also seized the opportunity to stump for another dynamo member of his Oakland Athletics teams who will be on the ballot. On his third try, Mark McGwire belongs in the Hall of Fame, La Russa believes. It's a matter of "integrity." "This steroid issue, that's a matter of integrity, right?" La Russa said. "That's one way to describe it, right? Well, it occurred to me, I know that I've never spoken much about it at all, but this guy did something that screams integrity. How many guys do we know that had a contract like he had? He had a contract in his hand for $15 million over two years, and he walked away from it because he didn't feel like he could play to that level. That, to me, there's a certain integrity for the sport, for self-respect and everything." La Russa is referencing a story that is well-known in St. Louis. After the 2001 season, a disappointing one for the slugger, McGwire retired and, as Bernie Miklasz put in a column around that time, "handed a guaranteed $30 million contract back to the Cardinals." (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
Hoops teams recruit 15-year-old
At 15, Tyler Lewis is used to being the youngest and smallest player on the court. He's already in his third season starting for a high school varsity basketball team even though he's just a ninth-grader and 5-foot-10, 145 pounds. But he has exceptional passing ability and a dead-on jump shot from 22 feet at Forsyth Country Day. And he already has coaches with the Charlotte 49ers, Auburn and Virginia Tech telling him they will pay his tuition, room and board if he will play basketball for them. "At first I thought it was a joke," Tyler said of his first offer, from Virginia Tech, which came this summer. NCAA has no rule preventing coaches from offering and securing non-binding oral agreements from players of any age. But the National Association of Basketball Coaches' board of directors in June asked coaches not to offer scholarships or accept commitments from players before June 15 following their sophomore year of high school. (Charlotte Observer)
Must-See Photo
Steelers wide receiver Santonio Holmes scores the controversial go-ahead touchdown in the final minute of Pittsburgh's 13-9 victory at Baltimore. (AP)
Must-See Video
Auburn AD Jay Jacobs gets an earful for hiring Gene Chizik (5-19 at Iowa State) as football coach.
Game To Watch
Browns at Eagles, 8:30 p.m. ET -- Philadelphia tries to continue its late-season playoff push.
Cleveland Browns
Philadelphia Eagles
This Day In Sports History

SI Vault: More John Elway
1982 -- Bear Bryant retires as football coach at Alabama.
1996 -- Troy Aikman shatters Roger Staubach's Cowboys record of 22,700 passing yards.
1996 -- John Elway sets an NFL record with his 126th victory as quarterback, one more than Fran Tarkenton.
1997 -- The 49ers retire Joe Montana's No. 16 jersey at halftime of their game against Denver.

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