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Original Issue

What's in a Name?

Over the objections of Canadians who fear that their nation's
already fragile identity will be further weakened, the eight-team
Canadian Football League announced last week that starting in July,
it will field expansion teams in Sacramento and San Antonio. Reason:
Struggling at home, the CFL hopes that its wide-open game will find
an audience in the U.S. As for quibbles that the CFL is now a
misnomer -- it will remain the Canadian Football League -- consider
these other mislabled sports entities.

-- National League East and National League West. In the East: the
St. Louis Cardinals. In the West: the Atlanta Braves and the
Cincinnati Reds. Last time we looked, St. Louis was 500 miles
northwest of Atlanta and 340 west of Cincy.
-- NFC East, NFC West and NFC Central. Even worse. Football's St.
Louis Cardinals moved to Phoenix, but somehow they're still in the
East, as are the Dallas Cowboys. In the West: the Atlanta Falcons. In
the Central: the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
-- International League. All the teams in this baseball minor
league are in the U.S., in such cosmopolitan cities as Pawtucket,
R.I.; Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; and Toledo.
-- Pacific Coast League. Seven of this minor league's 10 cities
are inland -- including Colorado Springs, which is 1,000 miles from
the Pacific.
-- Texas League. This is a five-state league, but, after all, one
of the states is Texas.
-- Big Ten. With Penn State aboard (page 50), it has 11 members.
-- Atlantic 10 Conference. With Penn State and Duquesne no longer
aboard, it has eight members.
-- Southwest Conference and Southeastern Conference. Arkansas's
move from the Southwest to the Southeastern leaves the former with
nothing but Texas schools, the latter with a school west of the
-- Heptagonal Games. The word heptagonal means seven-sided, but 10
schools vie in these annual track and cross-country competitions.
-- American Professional Soccer League. Actually, it's semipro.