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Leading Off

Dec. 01, 2014
Dec. 01, 2014

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Dec. 1, 2014

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THE HOLIDAY HELP LIST
  • Not sure what to get your family and friends—or, more important, what to request for yourself? Fear not: This special gift guide has ideas for every sports fan on your shopping list. So read on, then give, receive, or buy for yourself and do both at once

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Leading Off

PHOTOPHOTOGRAPH BY AL BELLO GETTY IMAGESExtend It Like Beckham Giants rookie wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. made an over-the-shoulder grab on Sunday that instantly became the talk of the nation, stretching his arm almost parallel to the ground and hauling the ball in with three fingers as he fell backward into the MetLife Stadium end zone. You can count the better catches in NFL history on, well, three fingers (maybe). The 43-yard touchdown by Beckham—who was captured by cameras practicing similar one-hand receptions before the game—put New York up 14--3 in the second quarter, but Dallas rallied to win 31--28.PHOTOPHOTOGRAPH BY KEVIN JAIRAJ USA TODAY SPORTSBetter The Sooner Oklahoma freshman tailback Samaje Perine (sa-MAH-jay PEE-rine) ran for 427 yards on 34 carries last Saturday in a 44--7 blowout of Kansas to break the FBS single-game rushing record—which had lasted all of a week. (Until Wisconsin junior Melvin Gordon gained 408 yards against Nebraska on Nov. 15, LaDainian Tomlinson's mark of 406 had stood for 15 years.) The 5'11", 243-pound Perine, who entered the game in Norman, Okla., averaging 100.1 yards, also scored five touchdowns, on runs of 49, 33, 34, 66 and 27 yards.PHOTOPHOTOGRAPH BY PETER DEJONG APSwiss Bliss Roger Federer has no LinkedIn account. There's no indication that, even at age 33 with four kids at home, he is seeking a career change. Yet the Republic of Tennis fixates on what it calls Federer's "career résumé," his army of fans italicizing the highlights, his few detractors emphasizing the missing elements. On Sunday in Lille, France—before the largest crowd ever for a sanctioned tennis match—Federer led the Swiss team to the Davis Cup title for the first time. In turn, he filled the one conceivable vacancy on his résumé and bolstered his already strong case as the sport's Greatest of All Time. Fittingly, Federer won the decisive match, deploying the classically sublime tennis we've come to expect. As he fell to the court in ecstasy and then lifted the Cup, he was, at once, the hero and the GOAT.PHOTOPHOTO BY YOAN VALAT/EPA[See caption above]