Steelers at Browns
ESPN 8:15 PM
After a three-year absence from the NFL, Cleveland can woof
about its new-model (not Modell!) franchise (page 66), its new
72,500-seat Cleveland Browns Stadium and its new Brown offensive
tackles, free-agent signees Lomas and Orlando. All that and
nemesis John Elway retired! Browns fans are blue, however, over
the career-ending neck injury sustained by middle linebacker and
Buckeye guy Chris Spielman. Cleveland's heralded rookie
quarterback Tim Couch (Ohio SAT verbal question: Couch is to
Browns as Bench is to ____) was not expected to start tonight;
journeyman Ty Detmer was. Speaking of fresh starts, Pittsburgh's
mobile quarterback, Kordell Stewart (right), is ready for one
after a miserable 1998.
CBS SATURDAY 11 AM; SUNDAY 4 PM
No, you haven't stumbled onto a lost episode of Sex and the
City. True, this New York-based program is replete with saucy
female characters, such as Martina Hingis and the Williams
sisters, Venus and Serena. It has a lone male lead, Andre Agassi
as Mr. Big. And sure, these women, like Sarah Jessica Parker,
are in search of something other than love, such as 15, 30
or--Yes! Yes!--advantage. But unlike the ladies on HBO, when
these women play, they always get a match. Today's women's final
will be especially compelling if it features the revitalized
Hingis or either (or both) of the rapidly ascending Williamses.
Georgia Tech at Florida State
ABC 8 PM
The network that shelved Home Improvement showcases the program
that has no need for it. Ten years and two days have passed since
any non-Florida school (Clemson) has won at Doak Campbell
Stadium. In that span the Seminoles are 54-1-1 at home (blame
Miami for the loss and Florida for the tie). The Yellow Jackets
shared the ACC title with Florida State in '98 and possess a
Charlie Ward clone in quarterback Joe Hamilton. But with the
nation's Heisman fave (Peter Warrick), top kicker (Sebastian
Janikowski) and nastiest defensive line, the No. 1 Seminoles
belong in the AFC, not the ACC.
Dolphins at Broncos
ABC 9 PM
Last week, two-time defending Super Bowl champion Denver
surprised everyone by naming ESPN anchor Dan Patrick its
opening-night quarterback. "We figured that no one is closer to
John Elway than he is," said one team official. "I mean, have
you seen those commercials?" Elway's actual replacement is
second-year man Brian Griese, who, as the son of Hall of Famer
Bob Griese, knows something about following in the footsteps of
greatness. Meanwhile, sideline reporter Lesley Visser is already
searching for rookie Dolphins defensive end Demetrius Underwood.
SportsCenter of the Decade: The '80s
ESPN 7:30 PM
The 1980s: Roberto Duran retired (early and often), Duran Duran
perspired, and Jimmy Durante expired. The Lakers, 49ers and
Carringtons were dynasties (but then everybody wants to rule the
world). Tonight cohosts Linda Cohn and Karl Ravech are gonna
party like it's 1988. "We've got everything you'd want," says
Cohn, "from the ball going between Buckner's legs to Larry
Bird's steal to myself in skyscraper-big hair singing the
opening lines to Toni Basil's Mickey."
ALL TIMES EASTERN. SCHEDULES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE. SOURCE:
NIELSEN SPORTS MARKETING SERVICE.
COLOR PHOTO: BOB ROSATO
Rating for the World Track and Field Championships on Aug. 29 on
NBC, a solid showing against Miami-Ohio State on ABC (5.0) and
Tiger Woods's win in the NEC Invitational on CBS (4.8).
The 1998-99 NHL season ended on June 19. A mere 84 days later
the 1999-2000 season--or at least the preseason--begins, with
games telecast locally. (Some also are available on the dish.)
This cold-weather sport didn't even take the whole summer off!
We're sorry, but unless you're an NHL scout, if you stay up
until 4 a.m. on Sunday to catch the Kings versus the Coyotes on
Fox Sports West from Las Vegas on tape delay, you should have
your brain Zambonied.