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October 13, 2002
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Winning Bucs stick to routines
Call it superstitious, but you don't change the habits of a team on a streak, players say.

Receivers take similar route
TAMPA -- He starred at Dorsey High School in Los Angeles, played receiver at a Pac-10 college, was a high draft pick and is among the NFL's most productive pass catchers and kick returners.

Chucky's Chalk Talk
On the Browns' offensive weapons: "I think they're fifth or sixth in this league throwing the ball. You've got Tim Couch, first player taken in the ('99) draft. Andre' Davis is a guy who is a really exciting player and a young draft pick from Virginia Tech. Quincy Morgan is a high pick. Dennis Northcutt is a high pick. The running back (William) Green is a high pick. They've got some players."

He's big on Predator, short on planes
Bucs reserve right tackle Cornell Green has returned to the bench today, after consecutive starts in place of Kenyatta Walker. But he's ready to share some thoughts on planes, being 6 feet 6, 315 pounds, Alien vs. Predator, Malcolm X and the finest woman in the world.

High Profile -- Anthony Henry

Dudley hoping to make Browns pay for decision

Hey, Chucky, climb aboard the A-Train
The Bucs' ground game ranks near the bottom of the NFL because the closest our new featured back (Michael Pittman) has come to the Pro Bowl is watching the game on TV, while a five-time Pro Bowl starter (Mike Alstott) rides the bench. It's time to wake up, Chucky, and smell the locomotive fumes. The A-Train needs to be put back on its tracks. You can't ride a Pittman all the way to San Diego, but you can take the A-Train.

Piniella starts the ball rolling
The Tampa resident asks M's if he may talk to other teams, a possible first step in joining Rays or Mets.

Hubert Mizell
What if Naimoli named me manager of the Devil Rays?
Although game-by-game Devil Rays agonies and cumulative Trop torment could shorten my life, rather than Tampa Bay's major-league franchise sacrificing another good baseball guy, what if Vince Naimoli named me manager?

Another smashing victory
LIGHTNING 5, HURRICANES 1: Rivalry results in 169 penalty minutes as Tampa Bay goes to 2-0-0 for first time.

Fedotenko makes Lightning look good
TAMPA -- The trade that brought forward Ruslan Fedotenko to the Lightning just became a little less controversial.

Dingman defends penalty minutes
TAMPA -- Asked why he swung his stick toward the face of Carolina's Jesse Boulerice, Chris Dingman did not hesitate.

[Times photo: Carrie Pratt]
FSU kicker Xavier Beitia reacts with disbelief and Miami's players begin to celebrate after his 43-yard field-goal miss on the final play.
Gary Shelton
For FSU, same sadness, but deeper
MIAMI -- The place was usual. The pain was familiar. The position was the same.

John Romano
Scowls of old might spark aimless UF
GAINESVILLE -- He left the field with a sober look and a purposeful stride. There was no hesitation or sign of emotion. Ron Zook continues to hold his chin high, which is impressive considering he may be in over his head.

UF Gators
Tigers keep Gators reeling
LSU 36, UF 7: Two Rex Grossman interceptions within 2:17 help make an SEC title unlikely.

Gators continue one trend, Tigers end another
GAINESVILLE -- The trends keep coming, but not for the better.

Called on to carry club, UF defense falls flat
The Gators look tired as they attempt to stop Tigers QB Matt Mauck in the third quarter.

USF Bulls
Bulls prove to be ready for prime-time players
SOUTH FLORIDA 16, SOUTHERN MISS 13: The Bulls beat the team that has won four of six titles in the league that kept USF waiting until 2003.

Crowd's cheers lift Bulls
In the final minutes, fans keep RayJay rocking and South Florida rolling to 16 consecutive home victories.

This 1 left
Miami 28, Florida State 27: Another errant field-goal attempt by the Seminoles as time expires preserves the Hurricanes' top ranking.

Despite early frustrations, Dorsey keeps composure
Miami's Heisman hopeful rebounds from 3 turnovers, improving to 32-1 as a starter.

'Canes leave win to fate
Miami acknowledges only FSU could prevent winning field goal.

Jones-led ground attack sustains Seminoles until fourth
MIAMI -- Florida State's plan was to run the ball behind bruising tailback Greg Jones, eat up yardage and the clock, keep the ball from Miami. It worked perfectly. It didn't work long enough.

FSU Quotebook
Defensive tackle Darnell Dockett:

Miami Quotebook
Linebacker Jonathan Vilma on whether he was stunned to see FSU lose by missing a field goal:

More college football
Orangemen honor deceased tackle
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The Orangemen presented a framed No. 66 game jersey to Omain Gullette's parents during halftime against Temple at Veterans Stadium.

Around the state: Golden Knights break into win column in MAC
KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- Ryan Schneider threw for 341 yards and three touchdowns Saturday to lead Central Florida to its first Mid-American Conference win, 31-27 over Western Michigan.

Hybl has tough day in victory
The Oklahoma QB throws early interceptions before coming up with some key passes.

Sooners stage comeback to beat Longhorns again
RB Quentin Griffin has another big day against Texas in a 35-24 victory.

Big 12: Buff runs for 309 in win over Kansas
LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Chris Brown rushed for 309 yards, including runs of 78 and 51 yards, and Robert Hodge threw three touchdowns to lead Colorado past Kansas 53-29 on Saturday.

C-USA: Second quarter sparks Tulane over Cincinnati
NEW ORLEANS -- J.P. Losman threw two touchdowns and ran for one as Tulane beat Cincinnati 35-17 Saturday.

ACC: Injured tailback keeps N.C. State unbeaten
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Arm tackles have not stopped freshman running back T.A. McLendon this season. Neither did a broken right wrist Saturday.

Big East: Pitt moves but can't score enough on ND
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Notre Dame had one sustained drive against Pittsburgh. It was all the Irish needed.

Big Ten: Michigan keeps Penn State searching for answers
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Two of college football's most tradition-rich programs turned a dull start into a fantastic finish Saturday.

SEC: Dawgs edge closer to SEC goal
ATHENS, Ga. -- After 20 years of disappointment, Georgia has that championship feeling again.

Pac-10: Ducks outgun Bruins to remain undefeated
PASADENA, Calif. -- Oregon and UCLA played another game that wasn't decided until the fourth quarter.

Baseball playoffs
Giants miss a chance to gain a stranglehold
CARDINALS 5, GIANTS 4: Bullpen shines as St. Louis pulls within 2-1 in NLCS.

Angels within a win of first World Series berth
ANGELS 7, TWINS 1: Great pitching continues to be the deciding factor.

Thome waits for an offer from Indians
CLEVELAND -- Jim Thome's agent wants the Indians to make the first pitch.

Yankees are hoping to build on (insert smirk) early playoff exit
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- The Yankees are gone, but not forgotten.

NLCS: Benes has new view after injury
SAN FRANCISCO -- He saw what life after baseball was like, and Andy Benes liked it.

ALCS: Mays just sticks with strengths
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- So how, Bradenton product Joe Mays was asked, could he top his sterling pitching performance for the Twins in the ALCS opener last week?

Et cetera
Highs & lows

Sports briefs
French free diver dies in attempt at record

Miami stops Orlando in final minutes
ESTERO -- Brian Grant hit two free throws with a minute to play and Miami held Orlando scoreless in the final three minutes in the Heat's 82-81 preseason victory Saturday night.

Stewart happy to finally be on top
Driver overcomes start to lead points race for first time in four-year career.

Panthers earn win with 10.2 left in OT
ATLANTA -- Olli Jokinen already is ahead of his normal pace.

NHL Slapshots
Privacy, please

Round-robin 1: a few surprises
AUCKLAND, New Zealand -- The Louis Vuitton Cup, the challenger series for the America's Cup, has been under way since Sept. 30. Nine teams from six countries are competing for the chance to try to dethrone two-time winner Team New Zealand beginning Feb. 15.

NFL Game Day: Week 6
Game predictions by Times staff writer Darrell Fry.

Injuries, defense hurt Bears
It was a fluke, right? The Bears went 13-3 last season, pulling out several close games at the wire, leaving everyone to wonder if they actually were as good as their record suggested.

Santa Fe overwhelms IRC
LAKELAND -- Unfortunately for Indian Rocks Christian, Lakeland Santa Fe Catholic played its best game of the year Saturday and defeated the Golden Eagles 34-6.

Plant quiets nemesis with two-game win
TAMPA -- All week, Plant heard through the grapevine that Boca Raton Olympic Heights was ready to face the Panthers a second time. And beat them again, of course.

Big kicks decide races in favor of Raider, Shark
RUSKIN -- Plant City senior Sara Hall and Bloomingdale freshman Jessica Forrester have been teammates for almost four years with the Seffner Youth Track Club, but Saturday at the W.D. Johnson meet, they ran as opponents.

Believe the hype: Kerry Allen is fast
The St. Petersburg freshman has won five of six meets in the county this season.

Amerman emerges and Lyons cruises
The Wesley Chapel and Citrus runners capture individual girls and boys crowns, but Lecanto and Satellite take team titles.

Daily fishing report: Tournament insider
Randy Stewart had to sort through a lot of king mackerel to catch a big Spanish mackerel for the Big Mack Attack Fishing Tournament at Billy's Stone Crab restaurant Saturday. But persistence paid off as he returned to the weigh-in with a 5.6-pound Spanish mackerel to win the tournament and a check for $1,000.

Series with no Yankees incomplete
For a Bronx-born and New York-raised guy who is in the later innings of life, a World Series without the Yankees is like a Thanksgiving without a turkey, a Christmas without a tree.

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On The Wire

From the state sports wire
  • Jacksonville's Spicer placed on IR after leg surgery
  • FIU-Western Kentucky game postponed because of Jeanne
  • Brown anxious to face old team for first time
  • Dolphins' desperate defense readies for Roethlisberger
  • Former Sarasota lineman sheds tough-guy image with Michigan
  • Rothstein rejoins Heat as assistant
  • No. 16 Florida has history on its side against Kentucky
  • FSU and Clemson QBs both off to slow starts