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December 8, 2002
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The plan? Leave Vick nowhere to run
Bucs defense wants to use its speed to neutralize the Falcons' mobile QB.

Lynch plays to his standards
TAMPA -- John Lynch doesn't listen to sports-talk radio shows.

Chucky's chalk talk
On the Falcons' underrated defense:

Kickin' back: Kerry Jenkins
If you didn't know Bucs left guard Kerry Jenkins was from Tuscaloosa, Ala., you soon will. Here is his take on antique cars, trailer parks, goats, sushi and Viagra. Yes, I said Viagra.

High profile: Dexter Jackson

Defense has shown it can contain Vick
Behind a furious pass rush, the Bucs held Michael Vick to 37 passing yards (4-for-12) and 1 yard rushing, both season lows for the Falcons quarterback, en route to a 20-6 victory Oct. 6 at the Georgia Dome.

Letters: Buc's chat: Bad calls may cost Bucs division title
I cannot understand why the officials, once again, bungled an obvious fumble by Deuce McAllister, costing the Buccaneers a touchdown (which would have been enough to give them the win, not to mention change the face of the game at that time). Yet they ruled that Aaron Stecker fumbled on a play when he was clearly down and his forward momentum was stopped.

Piniella hopes vets fill in holes
ST. PETERSBURG -- Lou Piniella has been kept busy selling the Devil Rays, giving speeches and pitching tickets to business groups. But he also has been working to make them better, watching video, studying stat sheets and talking things over and over.

Two points become one after disallowed goal
BRUINS 3, LIGHTNING 2 (OT): Replay officials deny Andre Roy a goal, and another lead disappears.

Tonight: Lightning at Blackhawks
WHEN/WHERE: 8; United Center, Chicago.

Bruins holdout sparks talks
BOSTON -- Lightning general manager Jay Feaster and Bruins GM MikeO'Connell spoke Saturday about Tampa Bay's interest in Boston's Kyle McLaren.

[AP photo]
Miami running back Willis McGahee has every reason to dance after rushing for 205 yards.
Hubert Mizell: Red Sox pin hopes on new 'kid' to restore team to glory
On a club dominated by talk of legends, like Babe Ruth and Ted Williams, the hiring of Red Sox GM Theo Epstein, just 28, generated a lot of buzz.

Gary Shelton: Schizophrenic 'Canes are still tough to beat
MIAMI -- At times, they are unstoppable. At others, unexplainable.

College football
Feeling Fiesta
UM 56, VA. TECH 45: Willis McGahee scores 6 TDs and Miami earns chance to defend national crown.

Oklahoma rolls to Big 12 crown
Sooners running back Quentin Griffin sets the championship-game rushing record with 188 yards in the 29-7 rout.

USF bowl hopes are dwindling
A day after its hopes of going to the Hawaii Bowl were dashed, South Florida apparently lost an opportunity to go to the Motor City Bowl with Washington State's 48-27 win over UCLA on Saturday.

Candeto's 7 scores lead Navy
A record day for the Midshipmen QB ends 10-game skid with 58-12 beating of Army.

Nothing says patriotism like Army-Navy football
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- As academy voices sang America's anthem with unique purity, my eyes elevated beyond the stadium rim, seeing clearly New York's captivating skyline, a half-dozen miles east through blue-sky December chill, causing one more hard swallow over the absence of the World Trade Center.

Bulldogs cruise to 1st SEC title since 1982
Arkansas never recovers after a pumped-up Georgia scores on its first five possessions, wins 30-3.

'Heisman Play' is Heisman-sized flop
MIAMI -- They call it the "Heisman Play" in honor of Nebraska's Eric Crouch, who won the award last year and scored a touchdown in similar fashion. They practice it every week, nearly every day. Apparently, it needs some more work.

Cougars land in Rose Bowl
PASADENA, Calif. -- An elated Jason Gesser stood before several hundred cheering Washington State fans Saturday, smiling and waving a single rose.


In brief
Case vs. OneWorld begins

Nets stop McGrady, Magic
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Kenyon Martin is considered one of the top five defenders in the league. Just ask him.

Lakers feeling confident after comeback
LOS ANGELES -- Don't dismiss the Lakers yet. After pulling off the second-biggest fourth-quarter comeback in league history, the three-time champions are feeling good about themselves again.

A cautious return

Short-handed Blues get win
PHILADELPHIA -- The Blues keep losing players. They also keep winning.

College basketball
FSU's Hamilton faces familiar foe
Leonard Hamilton seeks a victory against his friend, Perry Clark, and his former team, Miami.

Bulls go in search of recognition
South Florida is 4-0 but hits the road for the first time today to face a talented Florida team that has struggled this season.

State games

Irish drop Terps to second straight loss
WASHINGTON -- Maryland was a few minutes removed from a 79-67 loss to Notre Dame when coach Gary Williams ran into Juan Dixon in the hallway of the MCI Center.

Saluki watch
Senior guard Kent Williams broke out of an early slump Saturday, scoring 25 as the Salukis improved to 4-0.

Kentucky maintains its mastery over Tar Heels
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- There still appears to be a wide gap between the winningest programs in college basketball.

Teamwork keeps Clemson on a roll
ANDERSON, S.C. -- The new word at Clemson is balance.

FSU makes them count from line to rally past USF
TAMPA -- Florida State rallied from an 11-point second-half deficit with solid free-throw shooting down the stretch to beat South Florida 82-78 Saturday in the Dodge Shootout.

College volleyball
USF makes it tough, but Florida advances
The Gators win 3-1 and will host NCAA quarterfinal round.

MLB: Rangers let star catcher walk
ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Rangers cut ties Saturday with Ivan Rodriguez, refusing to offer arbitration to the 10-time All-Star catcher.

Stewart shines in the spotlight
Winston Cup champion Tony Stewart was up to his window net in public appearances last week when he made a startling revelation to a crowd of reporters.

Harrington cruises to a six-stroke lead
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- Padraig Harrington stole the script and the show from Tiger Woods in the Target World Challenge.

Absentees leave few challengers for Cougars
Countryside wins eight weight classes and cruises to second tournament victory of the season.

Colwill finishes where he began
The Tampa Prep diver wraps up his prep career with a third state title.

Football playoffs
Quote of the Day

Swing at South Sumter coach lands fan in jail
BUSHNELL -- A fan was arrested for trying to punch South Sumter coach Inman Sherman after the team's 17-14 loss to Jacksonville Bolles on Friday, authorities said.

Pirates' Craig comes away with title
Short-handed Pasco finishes seventh out of eight teams at Hooters Classic.

Gryphons settle for second
DURANT -- Although Sickles battled Lakeland tough throughout two days of the seventh annual Cougar Invitational, three missing Gryphons and a some talented Dreadnaughts proved to be the difference. Lakeland won with 252.5 points and five individual champions, followed by Sickles with 197 and one champion.

Manatee's depth prevails
TARPON SPRINGS -- The drama might have ended early, but that didn't affect the heated competition in the finals Saturday of the East Lake Invitational.

Rookie paces Patriots
PINELLAS PARK -- An exuberant Pinellas Park held onto its lead in the finals of the 10th annual Jerry Mita Invitational and came out on top with 253.5 points.

Owner supports Jaguars' Coughlin
JACKSONVILLE -- Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver strongly supports Tom Coughlin despite the coach's 18-26 mark the past three years.

Playoff status on the line
Will the Raiders win the AFC West? Will the Packers get homefield advantage throughout the playoffs? Will the Eagles get a first-round bye?

NFL game day: week 14
Falcons (8-3-1) at Bucs (9-3)

Outdoors: Daily fishing report
Short periods of daylight, cold fronts, high winds and water temperatures in the low 60s have effectively ended our kingfish season. There are, however, a few stragglers who are best targeted by deploying a flat line while taking advantage of the winter gag grouper season that has kicked into high gear for the same reasons.

Letters: Kubina deserved boos of fans
Of the fans booing Pavel Kubina at the Edmonton-Lightning game Thursday, Joanne Korth writes Vinny Lecavalier was "outraged." He was quoted as saying: "People should put themselves in his shoes. He's one of the best defensemen in the league. Everybody makes mistakes."

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