This is an article from the Jan. 25, 2010 issue
SIXERS POINT GUARD
The former Virginia high school state champion quarterback ended a brief retirement to re-sign with Philadelphia last month
Dan Patrick:How would you have done in the Wildcat offense if you'd played in college?
Allen Iverson: You want me to brag on myself?
DP:Yes. Would you have been like Michael Vick?
AI: He'd probably be a little better, honestly.
DP:You and Vick are both from the Tidewater area. Who was the better high school quarterback?
DP:You're well-versed in Philadelphia and what they do with superstars. So what should the Eagles do with Donovan McNabb?
AI: It's always a tough time right after the season ends. The fans love the Eagles in Philadelphia. But at this time, things are real rough mentally on people. So right now you just need to let everything calm down and let everyone get over the loss and think about it. Donovan has been great on and off the field. He deserves a chance to try to win a Super Bowl.
DP:When you were at Georgetown and he was at Syracuse, did your paths cross playing basketball?
AI: Yeah, Donovan was one of the last guys to get off the bench.
DP:He never guarded you?
AI: No. When Donovan was in the game I was probably already out.
DP:Who would you compare McNabb's game to?
AI: I didn't really get to see him play. I wouldn't want to do that [laughs].
DP:Like an Andre Miller?
AI: No, man, Andre Miller is an All-Star-caliber player.
DP:How about Oliver Miller?
AI: [Laughs] That is terrible. I wouldn't compare [Donovan] to him either. Come on, I can't kill Donovan. I love Donovan.
DP:How close were you to saying, "I'm done with the NBA"?
AI: I was there. It didn't have so much to do with me. It was my wife and kids not knowing where we were going to be living, not knowing where they were going to be going to school. Once I decided to retire, I actually felt good. I was working on trying to get fat, I was able to be around my wife and kids anytime I wanted to, I was a 24/7 dad....
DP:Wait a minute. You were trying to get fat?
AI: Yeah. Usually I'm active and trying to stay in shape and have my body right. At that point I was just lying around.
DP:What did you eat on the first day of retirement?
AI: Fried chicken, lasagna. Everything that was unhealthy. A lot of snacks.
DP:Do you get tired of jokes about your "Practice?" rant?
AI: The only problem I have with it is that I never want kids to feel like there's no need for practice. I enjoy it when people make fun of me about it, I just don't want kids to take it the wrong way.
DP:Do you break ankles any more with your crossover, or do you just sprain ankles?
AI: I can still do both. I'm really now using my John Stockton basketball skills, as far as thinking the game out and doing other things besides using my physical ability.
DP:Can I pencil you in for another season?
AI: I hope so. It'll all come down to me being happy. At this point in my career, that's all I want. And I'm in a situation right now where I am. I'm happy going to games and practice every day.
Just Say No
Former All-Star first baseman Mark Grace told me that the reason he never considered taking steroids to help him on the field was fear it would hurt him off of it. "I just knew that stuff was really bad for you," he said. "I am single now. I was a single guy then. I like my sex life. I want to be able to perform. It's kind of funny, it's kind of not. That stuff will tear you up as far as your manhood is concerned."
NBA big men—Blake Griffin, Greg Oden, Yao Ming—are dropping left and right, which got me thinking of starting a clothing line for injured players to wear on the bench during games. I asked my radio listeners to help come up with a name for such a company. These are a few of the best:
2. Blunder Armour
3. Calvin Pine
5. Blings & Slings
Line of the week
I asked UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel if his program would pursue any USC recruits amid rumors that his offensive coordinator Norm Chow had been approached by new Trojans coach Lane Kiffin: "[Recruits] are obviously fair game. Just like our coaches have been fair game."
Now Hear This
Listen to the podcasts at danpatrick.com/interviews
1. Colts WR Austin Collie discusses the AFC playoffs.
2. Lane Kiffin explains his decision to leave UT for USC.
THE FINE PRINT: NBC will air 835 hours of Winter Olympics coverage. 742 hours, if you don't count promos for Jay Leno.