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Original Issue

The Beat

The world of high fashion isn't always glamorous. Former SI swimsuit model Sabrina Barnett (1989, '90) says there's plenty of "incredibly boring" downtime on shoots. She used hers to plot a music career, writing songs on the set or in her hotel room. Last week the 33-year-old released her first album, Come As You Are. The 13 guitar-driven tracks, most of which were co-written by Barnett, tackle topics such as relationships gone bad and the frustrations she encounters on her day job. "There's a song called Bittersweet Angel," says Barnett (left, in 1990, and below, in 2005), "that's all about the modeling industry, the people and the fake faces people put on. My way to get that out is to sing about it. Hopefully that's a stepping stone for me and not a tombstone."

Now that he's mastered the inspirational high school sports story, producer Michael Tollin (Coach Carter, Radio) is moving on to the pros. The first event he'll focus on is one of the most dramatic, action-packed competitions around. That's right, the Wing Bowl, a chicken-wing eating contest held in Philadelphia the Friday before the Super Bowl. To research this tale of competitive eaters, Tollin spent time with 317-pound Bill (El Wingador) Simmons, a truck driver and five-time Wing Bowl champ, at a recent Phillies game. "I bought Bill three chicken sandwiches," says Tollin, "and in the three minutes before they were gone I looked up and he was on the JumboTron. Fans were going nuts. He's a hero." The movie won't be specifically about Simmons, Tollin says, but "the aspirations of every man. It's a modern-day Rocky story." But is it a sports story? "The competition is real. There are winners and losers. Eating's certainly a sport--in a Philly context, at least."

Adam Sandler and the ragtag team of convicts he leads in The Longest Yard remake (it opens May 27) owe a debt to Buccaneers coach Jon Gruden and ESPN analyst Sean Salisbury. Last summer Gruden invited producers to One Bucs Plaza, where he drew up some trick plays for them to use in the film. "Jon was going to show us a particular play," says Sandler's production partner, Jack Giarraputo. "Then he stopped and said, 'Nah, I may use that one myself.'" Salisbury was hired to make Sandler look less like Billy Madison and more like Billy Kilmer. "Licking his fingers on the way to the line, the swagger, how to grab his towel--I taught him that," the ex--Vikings QB says. "I didn't want him to look like a big dork." Salisbury was rewarded with a speaking part in Yard and a role in the Sandler-produced Little League pic The Benchwarmers, due next year.... Ever since Roseanne butchered the national anthem at a Padres game 15 years ago, baseball and music have gone together like, well, Roseanne and Tom Arnold. Good Sports Recordings will try to mend that relationship by releasing Oh Say Can You Sing? an 11-track CD of current and ex-MLBers singing for charity. Among the highlights: Ozzie Smith doing Sam Cooke's Cupid and Omar Vizquel taking a crack at the Goo Goo Dolls' Broadway.

They Said It


Padres manager, before a game in which Anna Kournikova (right) threw out the first pitch: "We've got 25 guys that all have their catcher's mitts on."


A Louisville gift shop is selling "Genuine Kentucky Thoroughbred Horse Manure" for $3.75 a bag.




Some horses get to the Kentucky Derby, some pull the Budweiser sled, and some wind up jumping over large wooden ducks--that's just the way life is. At the Rolex 3-Day Event in Lexington, Ky., things went swimmingly, as usual, for Kim Severson and her mount, Winsome Adante. The pair won the competition for the third time in the past four years.