"Lazzari's Sports Roundup" - - - - 12/24/11

O.K., I guess you can say Barry Bonds and the term "MVP" are usually associated with one another; hey, the guy won SEVEN of them, right? In my book, he'll ALWAYS be considered my own personal "MVP": Most Vile Person..........TRIVIA QUESTION: In Don Shula's last year of coaching the Miami Dolphins (1995), what player led the team in rushing yardage? Answer to follow.........Can you imagine if Ohio State tennis player Nicole Flower ever walked down the aisle with former NFL running back Roosevelt Potts? Horticulturists throughout the land would surely take pleasure in her full married name of Nicole Flower Potts..........The other day, I was sitting at Madison Square Garden enjoying a basketball game with lovely actress Jennifer Aniston--with TONS of mistletoe hanging from the rafters of that historic arena in NYC. Yeah--then I woke up..........This week in sports history, December 27, 1953: With 2:08 remaining in the game, QB Bobby Layne throws a 33-yard TD pass to Jim Doran--leading the Detroit Lions to a 17-16 victory over the Cleveland Browns in the NFL championship game. It was the Lions' second straight title, and was played before more than 54,000 fans at Briggs Stadium. Cleveland had built an early lead in the game due to three Lou Groza field goals. However, Cleveland quarterback Otto Graham had a miserable day for the visitors (2-for-15 passing), and his desperation pass in the closing minute was intercepted by rookie Carl Karilivacz--sealing the victory for the hometown Lions..........ITEM: Chicago Bears wide receiver Sam Hurd is busted after allegedly telling an undercover agent that he was interested in purchasing 5-10 kilograms of cocaine and 1,000 pounds of marijuana PER WEEK in order to distribute in the Chicago area. Well, at least we know that ONE thing is certain in this case: With THOSE kind of quantities being thrown out there, Hurd will NOT be able to change his tune down the road and say that his plan all along was to simply purchase the stuff for PERSONAL USE ONLY..........O.K.--one more: Just imagine if former North Carolina swimmer Kristin Oxford married NFL lineman Richard Seymour, divorced, married former tennis player Todd Woodbridge--divorced again--then married NBA Hall of Famer Earl Monroe. Those familiar with Connecticut towns would surely enjoy her full married name of Kristin Oxford Seymour Woodbridge Monroe..........I used to think that watching Ray Guy punting a football was the ultimate thing of beauty. That all changed the other day when I saw a photo of actress Eva Longoria decked out in a long, red dress at the Noble Gift gala in London. My goodness--some things in life are just SO unfair, folks..........Answer to trivia question: BERNIE PARMALEE--whose 878 yard total in '95 was a personal season-high during a nine-year career spent with the Dolphins and Jets..........Happy birthday wishes go out to former NFL running back Charles Way--who blows out 39 candles on December 27th. Way was drafted by the New York Giants in the sixth round of the 1995 NFL draft and played for the team for five seasons before a knee injury curtailed his career in 2000. In 75 career games, he gained 1,356 yards rushing and also accumulated 898 yards receiving. His best year was in 1997 when he took over for an injured Rodney Hampton; he carried the ball 151 times that season for 698 yards--an average of 4.6 yards per carry. Currently, Way is employed by the Giants as their director of player development. Best wishes for many more birthdays to come, Charles..........Condolences go out to the family of former Harvard football coach Joe Restic--who passed away recently in Boston at the age of 85. Restic coached the Crimson from 1971-1993--the longest-serving head football coach in Harvard history. While at Harvard, Restic compiled a coaching record of 117-97-6 and won or tied for five Ivy League championships during his 23 years there. He was also an assistant coach at Brown and Colgate and spent nine seasons coaching the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in the CFL before coming to Cambridge. A Villanova graduate, Restic played briefly with the Philadelphia Eagles in the early '50's and also played baseball in the Phillies organization. Joe Restic is survived by two sons, two daughters, a sister and eight grandchildren. Rest in peace, "Coach."..........Finally, as this is the last published column of 2011, I'd like to thank my readers for their continued loyalty and for being such a terrific audience year after year. Merry Christmas, everyone, and my hope is that everyone out there has a healthy, prosperous 2012.