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Original Issue

The Beat

VELVET REVOLVER'S Fall to Pieces sounds like a standard hard-rock love song, but when front man Scott Weiland sings it, Notre Dame's 13-year bowl game losing streak is probably in the back of his mind. The former Stone Temple Pilots lead singer, whose father, David, is a Notre Dame alum, is a huge Irish fan and often blogs about the team on With rumors flying that coach Charlie Weis might flee South Bend for an NFL job, Weiland was moved last week to write, "Leaving Notre Dame without having achieved really anything of monolithic proportions like you promised us, is absurd and unfair. I will get on my knees and beg. Don't do it, coach. Don't do it! Stay and do what you promised."

• Beyoncé Knowles (right), the main squeeze of Nets part-owner, Jay-Z, has struck a deal for her fashion line, Deréon, to outfit the team's dancers. Knowles's mother, Tina, will design the troupe's new costumes.... Tea-leaf readers in Green Bay think they have a clue that Brett Favre is planning to retire. Last week it was revealed that the Packers' quarterback dropped his membership at the swanky Oneida Golf & Country Club—a sign, some fans say, that he doesn't plan to spend much time in Green Bay. Packers CEO Bob Harlan isn't so sure: "Brett hardly played [golf] at all this year," he said.

• In 1992 SI senior writer Rick Reilly and former SI reporter Duncan Brantley sold a screenplay called Leatherheads, a romantic football comedy set in the '20s, just before the birth of the NFL. Mel Gibson and Michael Keaton showed interest but ultimately, says Reilly, "The script sat. It was a doorstop. And then a paperweight. I think it once held up a lopsided table." Now George Clooney has revived the project: He'll direct and play halfback Jimmy (Dodge) Connelly, a fictional character based on real-life '20s barnstormer Johnny (Blood) McNally. Says Reilly, "Blood came from a league where owners made you shower with your uniform on and then had you hang it out the window of the train on the way to your next game." The film starts production in February. "Now I just want to see it made," says Reilly. "And I wouldn't mind a small part."

• Police in Franklin, Tenn., issued a trespassing warning to the Titans' Pacman Jones and some friends recently after the group was caught riding ATVs on land believed to be owned by country music star George Jones. The next day Jones the crooner knocked on Jones the cornerback's door—their estates are close to each other—to say that he doesn't own the land in question and to welcome the Titan to the neighborhood. Pacman signed autographs for the 75-year-old singer and his wife, Nancy, who, according to their lawyer Worrick Robinson, "are two of [Pacman's] biggest fans."


A New Zealand bride and groom played 18 holes of miniature golf to decide who would give up their surname.


Al Gore's movie was an eye-opener, but who thought global warming could get this ugly? With training runs at the Lauberhorn course in Switzerland canceled because temperatures hit the 50s, World Cup skier Rainer Schoenfelder hit the slopes au naturel. He did it not to keep cool, but because he'd lost a bet with his physiotherapist. Still, 10 World Cup events in Europe have been canceled or postponed for lack of snow.

They Said It

JIM PALMER, 61-year-old former pitcher, on his recent wedding proposal:
"I didn't have any problem getting down on my knee, but I had a problem getting back up."