With Election Day looming, we ran down the 48-year-old football
Hall of Fame receiver and former U.S. congressman who is the
Republican nominee in the race to succeed Oklahoma governor Frank
SI: President Bush was recently cited by Runners' World for being
an exceptionally fit commander in chief, after he ran a
three-mile race in 20:29. Think you can beat him in the 40?
Largent: Oh, I can take him in the 40, but maybe not in the
SI: Ever tell voters on the campaign trail that you were twice
ranked with the likes of Brad Pitt and Tom Selleck as one of
People's Most Beautiful People?
Largent: It depends on which group of people I'm speaking to.
SI: Why should the people of Oklahoma vote for you?
Largent: Because I really love this state. I'm a competitor, and
I believe Oklahoma doesn't have to be the seventh-poorest state
in the country.
SI: Do you have a favorite of your 819 career catches?
Largent: Well, I have a favorite play. That was hitting [Broncos
safety] Mike Harden [in 1988] after he'd knocked out two of my
teeth in a previous game with an illegal hit.
SI: What was harder: getting a bill past President Clinton or
getting by Raiders cornerbacks Lester Hayes and Mike Haynes?
Largent: That's tough. I'd say Haynes and Hayes were better at
man-for-man than Bill Clinton was.
SI: How does President Largent sound?
Largent: Intimidating, to me.
SI: A lot of Oklahoma football types have run for statewide
office but lost, from legendary Sooners coach Bud Wilkinson to
Oklahoma running back Ron Shotts to Sooners quarterback Jack
Mildren. Are you already jinxed?
Largent: Those were all OU guys. I'm a TU [University of Tulsa]
SI: Which was the tougher press corps: NFL beat writers or the
journalists covering Capitol Hill?
Largent: Let's put it this way: Working on Capitol Hill, I still
needed a helmet. --R.D.
For more from Steve Largent, go to cnnsi.com/scorecard.