Sports Beat

February 17, 2003

Nike's soccer-streaker ad (SCORECARD, Feb. 3) is inspiring
copycats. Late in the first half of the North Carolina--Duke
basketball game, 21year-old Duke student Robert Findly sprinted
onto his home court wearing only sneakers and a scarf (just like
the Nike nude), with a blue swoosh painted on his back. Findly
juked past two policemen on his second lap around the court but
then got gang-tackled by four officers and was later charged with
indecent exposure and disorderly conduct. Meantime, Reebok CEO
Paul Fireman was also inspired by the streaker. Fireman dreamed
up an ad that aired nationally on Feb. 5 in which, yup, a naked
man with a scarf bursts onto a soccer pitch. This time, though,
he is flattened by "office linebacker" Terry Tate, who bellows,
"You just did it, so I had to hit it." Tate, who is really 6'7",
320-pound actor Rasta, debuted as Reebok's pitchman during the
Super Bowl.

Jennifer Lopez has had some rotten luck in love (she's been
divorced twice), but could she have a magic hand as a sports
bettor? According to the Las Vegas Sun, Lopez plunked down
$250,000 on the Buccaneers in the Super Bowl, taking the money
line at +160. That means she took home a $400,000 profit--enough,
were she inclined, to buy her beau Ben Affleck one rockin' season
ticket to his beloved Red Sox. A senior MGM Grand executive
confirmed to the paper that J. Lo had placed a winning six-figure
wager. Lopez's spokesman, Alan Nierob, told SI that his client
doesn't bet. But, he added, "at least they're saying she won."

Tony Kornheiser, already a hit on ESPN's Pardon the
Interruption, is getting deeper into TV. CBS has commissioned a
sitcom pilot based on Kornheiser's life as a Washington Post
columnist, a husband and a father of two teenagers. "I'm
enormously flattered that someone thought my life could be the
subject of a TV show," Kornheiser tells SI, "and terrified that
someone will actually try to make such a show." Kornheiser, who
won't write or act in the series, has a 20-year-old daughter and
a son who's 17; in the show the kids will be younger. "I don't
know if I'll be younger," Kornheiser, 54, says, "but I damn well
hope I'll be better-looking."

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban went bowling with the highly
demonstrative PBA Hall of Famer Pete Weber before the Days Inn
Open last week, and Mavs fans may want to keep an eye on the
sideline. "He taught me his crotch chop," Cuban said, referring
to one of Weber's celebratory moves. "I wonder if I'll get fined
by the NBA if I do that at a referee."

Never has the union of loud music and fast cars been as fruitful
as it was last Saturday night, when 19-year-old Chase Montgomery
won the season-opening race in the ARCA series in a car co-owned
by Alice Cooper. The race, held at Daytona's speedway, was the
first stock car event Cooper's ever attended. He was blown away.
"It's sort of like you hear a record, but you never really hear a
band until you go see it and feel the bass drum hitting you in
the chest," says the man who sang "I can't get a girl 'cause I
ain't got a car."

COLOR PHOTO: BOB ROSATO (MASCOT) PICTURE THIS Warriors guard Jason Richardson won the NBA slam-dunk contest for the second straight year, but that's only because Sixers mascot Hip-Hop wasn't entered. Listed at only 5'7" (6'4" with his ears fully extended), the begoggled bunny thrilled the kids with his trampoline-propelled theatrics during a break in the action at Saturday's All-Star Rookie Challenge game. COLOR PHOTO: JEFFREY MAYER/WIREIMAGE.COM (LOPEZ) She didn't take the six. COLOR PHOTO: JEFF REINKING/NBAE/GETTY IMAGES (JAMES)

THIS WEEK'S SIGN OF THE APOCALYPSE

The USOC is threatening to sue Nebraska Wesleyan for using the
word Olympics in its annual Rat Olympics, in which trained rats
compete in hurdling, long jumping, rope climbing and
weightlifting.

THEY SAID IT
JEROME JAMES
SuperSonics center, responding to coach Nate McMillan's charges
that he is selfish: "I don't have the first clue who he is
talking about, because all I worry about is Jerome."

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)