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Sports blotter: "Super Bowl? What Super Bowl?" edition
By MATT TAIBBI  |  February 6, 2008


Far away from Glendale . . .
We start off this week with a crime that occurred some place other than Arizona, a/k/a the place we do not mention, where the sports tragedy that did not happen did not take place. Far from the Super Bowl, which did not happen, a University of Missouri basketball player named Jason Horton was arrested this past weekend — and he may not be the last Tigers hoopster to enter the criminal-justice system as a result of recent weekend activities.

Horton and at least four other Missouri players were visiting a local Columbia nightclub called the Athena this past weekend when a melee broke out, involving, according to press reports, 20 to 30 people. During the course of that brawl, Tigers point guard Stefhon Hannah broke his jaw, though no one knows exactly how that happened. A 26-year-old man identified by police as “kitchen help” was also injured. That man suffered head and back injuries and was said to have been “punched repeatedly”; he identified Horton as his attacker, leading to the player’s arrest on Sunday for third-degree assault.

Missouri coach Mike Anderson acted swiftly, indefinitely suspending Horton and Hannah, plus senior players Darryl Butterfield and Marshall Brown, as well as junior Leo Lyons. The official reason given for the suspension was curfew violation, but it seems the university is afraid there’s more to the story. Police say more arrests are “likely.”

Come on now, beating up kitchen help? That’s beneath the dignity of a D-1 basketball player. At least try to find a police horse to punch first. Thirty points for Horton, and we’ll see about the rest . . .

Angry cougar
A weird-ass story came out of Washington this past week — one that I can pretty much guarantee we won’t have a repeat of any time soon. It seems Washington State free safety Xavier Hicks was pissed at roommate and teammate Grady Maxwell for leaving on Christmas break without paying the cable bill. When Maxwell returned from vacation, he found the cable shut off and, well, something not quite right with his contact lenses. They were larger than usual, and when he sniffed them, they smelled like rubbing alcohol. Why did they smell like rubbing alcohol? Because Hicks had put it in there, using it to replace his roommate’s contact-lens solution.

When word of this got out, Hicks was arrested for second-degree assault. It seems putting rubbing alcohol on contact lenses can cause corneal abrasions and extreme pain. Maxwell was lucky he noticed the switch. Not long after Hicks got popped for that offense, it came out that he had also illegally used someone else’s credit card. He now faces charges for that, as well.

Uncool roommate behavior. Worse than Ben-Gay in the underpants. Twenty-two points for that one.

Minor investment
This next one’s not much of a crime, but so odd it commands mention. Randy Newsom, a double-A baseball pitcher in the Indians system (he last pitched for the Akron Aeros), got into a tiff with the SEC this past week for launching an unusual investment scam. Newsom offered to sell four percent of his future earnings for $50,000; investors could also buy shares in smaller chunks. The pitcher, who throws with a submarine style and had a 3.12 ERA this past year, had sold $36,000 worth of shares when the SEC — not the Southeastern Conference, you numb-skulls, but the federal Securities and Exchange Commission — made him stop.

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