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Original Issue

Q&A Matthew McConaughey

The actor, 34, plays an ex--college football star who becomes a handicapper in Two for the Money, which opens on Oct. 7

SI: As a Texas alum, state your case for Longhorns quarterback Vince Young's winning the Heisman Trophy.

McConaughey: The main thing is his will. When there's an unsuccessful play--incompletion, interception, fumble--his head starts to rise, and not in a cocky way. There's a difference in thinking you are a champion and knowing that you are. And the guy knows he is.

SI: You're throwing a house party, and you only have room for one former Longhorns running back. Do you invite Ricky Williams or Cedric Benson?

McConaughey: I bet we can get both of them in. But Ricky would probably sneak in better than Cedric.

SI: Your late father, Jim, was drafted in the 27th round by the Packers in 1953. What do you know about his play?

McConaughey: He was a defensive end, like 6'4", 210 pounds. He sacked John Unitas twice in one game, but I don't know if that was an exhibition. He never talked about it. My mom has shown us newspaper clippings.

SI: How well do you know your fellow Austin resident Lance Armstrong?

McConaughey: A little. I talked to him after he won the Tour [in July]. We were talking about acting jobs. I asked him what he was going to do now. He said, 'Maybe I'll get into acting.' But I think he was b.s.'ing me.

SI: What's your greatest athletic feat?

McConaughey: I've had four holes in one.

SI: How does a kid from Texas become a Washington Redskins fan?

McConaughey: When I was six, my favorite food was hamburger, and they had a linebacker, number 55, named Chris Hanberger. And I found myself up late watching Westerns and rooting for the Indians instead of the Cowboys. So I became a Redskins fan. --Richard Deitsch