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Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
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Smith denies reports of his retirement
By wire services
Published February 2, 2005
JACKSONVILLE - Emmitt Smith denied a report Tuesday that he will retire this week.
ESPN.com, citing unidentified "confidants" of the star running back, reported Smith will retire Thursday in Jacksonville, site of this year's Super Bowl. Smith spent the past two seasons with Arizona after 13 seasons with Dallas.
An Internet report out of Minnesota said Smith would announce his retirement today and join a group headed by an Arizona businessman to purchase the Vikings.
Smith, 35, denied the report in comments to the Dallas Morning News.
"Did you see my year last year? Do you think I'm ready to retire?" Smith said.
Smith rushed for 937 yards and nine touchdowns this season. He has 18,355 yards overall and 164 touchdowns and was the league's most valuable player in 1993.
Eugene Parker, Smith's longtime agent, declined to comment. Werner Scott, Smith's Dallas-based marketing representative, could not be reached for comment. Neither the Cardinals nor Cowboys have announcements planned.
Monday, he took part in a dinner honoring past Super Bowl MVPs. At the dinner, he said he'd like to retire as a Cowboy.
"There's always a chance (of not playing in 2005)," Smith said. "Somebody has got to want me, and if they don't want me, then what? I want to play. I want to do what I want to do."
Smith is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent in March. He could sign a ceremonial one-day deal with the Cowboys. Other veteran stars have done so with their primary team.
If he wanted to do it before March, the Cardinals would have to rescind his rights.
FAVRE RETIRE?: Packers receiver Donald Driver said he believes Packers quarterback Brett Favre will retire.
"You think in your heart that you know he's going to come back and play," Driver said. "But in my mind, I feel like he won't. I don't see Brett coming back and having to prove anything.
Favre's agent, James Cook, was unavailable for comment, and the Packers issued a statement saying nothing has changed regarding Favre's status.
Buc pulls out of Pro Bowl
Bucs linebacker Derrick Brooks pulled out of the Pro Bowl because of a knee injury. Carolina linebacker Mark Fields, who missed the 2003 season while battling Hodgkin's disease, will replace him.
Also, Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi was added to the AFC roster, replacing injured Baltimore linebacker Ray Lewis. Bruschi is the fifth Patriots player on the roster, joining Tom Brady, Larry Izzo, Richard Seymour and Adam Vinatieri.
BRONCOS: Bob Slowik was hired as defensive backs coach. He was the Packers' secondary coach from 2000-03 until becoming defensive coordinator last season.