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Tue., May 23, 1995

Don’t sell yourself short, Tim

Ah, the power of understatement. “I feel pretty comfortable at the plate,” Tim Jorgensen was saying, “but I know there are still things I have to work on.” Quotability, for one. Jorgensen’s comments came after the Wisconsin-Oshkosh shortstop racked up six homers and 16 RBIs in a recent doubleheader. His 37 HRs and 111 RBIs this year are Division III records.

We assumed he owned a Timberwolf

Christian Laettner had been accused of dogging it, to be sure, but this was ridiculous. The Minnesota Timberwolves forward almost lost Chief, his 3-year-old German shepherd-husky mix, when the runaway dog turned up in a research lab.

Chief, missing since running away from Laettner’s brother’s home in April, was saved at the last minute when a University of Minnesota medical researcher recognized the dog from a picture that ran in a newspaper story detailing Laettner’s search.

Chief was picked up by St. Paul animal control officials April 22. When no one claimed the dog, euthanasia was scheduled for April 28. University officials gave Chief a temporary reprieve just hours before he was to be put to death when they bought him for $42 to conduct medical research.

Doctors wanted to know the effects of prolonged exposure to pompous, perpetually whiney athletes.

Majoring in business - er, anger management

You weren’t the only one shocked to see San Antonio problem child Dennis Rodman actually make a jump shot or two in Thursday’s clincher against the Lakers. Rapper Tone Loc, courtside at the Forum, passed out.

Turns out the light-headed Loc was also a little lighter in the wallet, having been fined $1,350 earlier this month and ordered to undergo an anger management program for attacking a friend’s car with a baseball bat - while the friend was still inside.

For the record, the wife of Atlanta Braves manager Bobby Cox insists Loc didn’t do it.

Better competing through chemistry

Maybe we all blew the Warren Sapp business out of proportion.

In South Africa, 14-year-old runner Liza de Villiers tested positive for steroids, making her the world’s youngest track athlete to be so charged. She was suspended from competition by Athletics South Africa pending a hearing.

In London, meanwhile, 17-year-old Jamie Hughes has become the first English soccer player to be charged with using a performance-enhancing drug - specifically amphetamines - but he has an alibi. He claims his drinks were spiked while at a nightclub.

“There was no performance-enhancing intention,” said Tranmere team chairman Frank Corfe. “We believe the boy is a victim of a modern scourge and we’re very saddened by it.”

That was probably ginger ale he was sipping at the nightclub, too.

The last word …

“I think the wife and I will decide not to take the kids to the Olympics but instead put them through college. The costs appear similar.”

- Pittsburgh columnist Gene Collier on ticket prices for the Atlanta Olympics

Tags: column

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