Prince Naseem Hamed vs. Wayne McCullough
HBO, 9:45 PM
I was dreamin' when I wrote this, forgive me if it goes
astray.... Uh, where were we? Oh, right--Hamed (right), the
other Prince of pop. As is the case with the Artist Formerly
Known As, this 5'4" featherweight's talent is often obscured by
his gimmickry. He holds prefight raves in his dressing room and
enters the ring by doing a front flip over the ropes. "I'm the
bomb," says Hamed, 24, a Brit of Yemeni descent. Arrogant, yes,
but he knows it's how you exit the ring that matters most: His
30-0 record includes 28 knockouts. Can McCullough (22-1; 14
KO's) withstand the ambidextrous Hamed's blows for 12 rounds? Or
will it be another case of party over--oops, out of time?
Florida vs. Georgia
CBS, 3:30 PM
A.K.A. The World's Largest Cocktail Party. The world's largest
cocktail, according to The Guinness Book of World Records, was a
6,859-gallon Juicy Duce mixed at the Buderim (Australia) Tavern
on Oct. 19, 1996, and some sheepherder named Angus is probably
still sleeping that one off. Speaking of soporifics, before the
Bulldogs' 37-17 upset last season, this rivalry had become the
World's Largest Slumber Party as the Gators ripped off seven
straight wins. Florida will be a slight favorite, but today's
tussle in Jacksonville features two Top 20 teams who each have
lost once, to Tennessee. Georgia's superlative Champ Bailey, who
excels both at cornerback (two interceptions) and at wide
receiver (27 receptions, five touchdowns), may be the world's
busiest football player.
New York City Marathon
ESPN2, 10:30 AM
Someone living on Manhattan's tony Upper East Side will awaken
to the sight of more than 26,000 runners heading up First Avenue
and think, Fabulous! Sirio must have opened up a new brunch
place. The past three female winners--Franziska Rochat-Moser,
Anuta Catuna and Tegla Loroupe--are entered, and among the men's
front-runners will be last year's victor, John Kagwe, and
two-time winner German Silva. Here's hoping the margin of
victory for both women and men is less than a New York minute.
CART Marlboro 500
ESPN, 3:30 PM
Alex Zanardi is proud of his checkered past--in just three
seasons of CART racing the dashing Italian has copped 15
checkered flags. Zanardi, who has already locked up his second
season championship, will return to Europe next year to compete
in Formula One, and Bobby Rahal, a 17-year Indy Car veteran and
the 1986 Indianapolis 500 winner, is making his last CART start
in this race.
49ers at Packers
FOX, 4 PM
For those harboring NFL realignment fantasies, we suggest the
Bay Division: Green, Tampa, San Francisco, Biscayne (Miami) and
Mission (San Diego), with sideline reporter Willow you-know-who.
The Packers (5-2) have knocked the Niners (6-1) out of the
playoffs for two years running, but San Francisco has the NFC's
top-rated offense this year. Quarterback Steve Young is in
vintage form, and wideouts Terrell Owens, Jerry Rice and J.J.
Stokes have the most catches of any receiving trio (97) in the
league. The best defense Green Bay's ineffective secondary can
hope for is seasonal weather. Any storm in a port.
ALL TIMES EASTERN. SCHEDULES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE. SOURCE:
NIELSEN SPORTS MARKETING SERVICE
COLOR PHOTO: JOHN IACONO [Prince Naseem Hamed in boxing match]
Anemic overnight rating for Sunday's DC United-Chicago Fire MLS
Cup game on ABC; July's Brazil-France World Cup final got a 5.7.
Sound bites to savor: In Game 5 of the NLCS, the Padres' Wally
Joyner gloved a bad-hop grounder that Fox analyst Tim McCarver
pronounced "as unreadable as a Russian novel." Play-by-play man
Joe Buck, tweaking NBC's relentless cross-promoting, responded,
"You wouldn't be talking about Crime and Punishment, would
you?"; in Game 3 of the World Series, as Yankee Scott Brosius's
game-winning home run sailed over the fence, an outfield
microphone caught Padres centerfielder Steve Finley barking a
pithy expletive. Or maybe he just said, "Fox!"