espn.com Ali Contest
To get a grip on the NFL season, Page 2's Gregg Easterbrook goes into the wacky world of unrhymed Japanese lyric poetry. How else to explain Al Davis? Or the unsightliness of those Buffalo uniforms? And what better way to pay homage to the Dallas cheer-babes who started it all? It's poetic justice.
EASTERBROOK: HIGH COUP OF HAIKU




ESPN TOOLS
 
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Hoping Britney will bring Madonna along at Thursday night's NFL kickoff celebration? So are we. Ms. Spears is in Dan Shanoff's hot Hot HOT ledger as he presents what's in (and out of) NFL vogue. Plus, Tim Keown knows exactly what he wants out of the football season. Hint: He'll have a long wait.

Ballpark Tour Weekend Water Cooler
Jeff Merron finds some friendly ghosts rattling around the empty seats at Shea Stadium, even if the bathrooms are too haunted to employ. Page 2's Ballpark Tour makes a stop at the Big Apple's "other" yard.
Page 2's Brian Murphy marvels at an upset of mythic proportion: Fenway fans in a standing ovation for Public Enemy No. 1, Rocket Roger. What's next? Mickelson toeing the slab for the Tigers?

THE DAILY QUICKIE
The Daily Quickie is feeling pretty good about his job security now that the pressure of deadline journalism has weeded out another challenger in Ms. Kournikova. Plus, Manny's madness and mea culpas.


The Tigers are making a serious run at the Mets' modern-day record for most losses in a season by failing to measure up in every phase of the game. But are they so bad that they belong on our list of the worst group efforts in history?

10]  Makers of the IBM PCjr
IBM's first foray into the home PC market was an epic failure, as disk problems forced Big Blue to pull the jr off the market after 14 months.
9]  2002 U.S. Men's Basketball Team
Three losses and sixth place in the World Championships? Used to be the U.S. could win these tournaments with its eyes closed. But bad chemistry and roster holes embarrassed us all.
8]  Brains behind Premier smokeless cigarettes
R.J. Reynolds could see the anti-smoking writing on the wall way back in 1989. But five years in development and megamillions in research didn't get these ciggies lit.
  • GET THE FULL LIST


NFL FAVORITE LINE UNDERDOG O/U
Thursday Redskins 3 Jets 40½
Sunday Bills EV Patriots 46½
Sunday Browns Colts 45½
Sunday Packers 6 Vikings 46½
Sunday Cowboys 2 Falcons 36½
Sunday 49ers 7 Bears 40
Sunday Titans 3 Raiders 46½
Monday Eagles 3 Buccaneers 36
All Times ET | Bold indicates home team
Complete line


 
Got a comment about something you've seen on Page 2? Here's your chance to sound off to the editors and columnists. Plus, if you'd like to send an e-mail to The Sports Guy, here's your direct link to Bill Simmons.



THE HOT LIST
With the season about to open in full swing, Dan Shanoff has what's sizzling and fizzling in college football this year.

BALLPARK TOUR
Cincinnati had high hopes for its new ballpark, but like Ken Griffey Jr., it's hurting in a few places.

REAL SEABISCUIT
Page 2's Jeff Merron compares Seabiscuit's real life to Seabiscuit's reel life.

EMBRACING ANNA
After seeing Ms. Kournikova in action off the court, here's the thought for the day: It's time to drop the Anna-mosity.

MEET THE 'MAKERS'
Page 2's Bill Simmons says ESPN's "Playmakers" is worth watching, but several flaws keep it from being a great show.
If your favorite writer isn't on Page 2 today, click here to check out our full roster of columnists.


It's former Mariner Jay Buhner, left and "Playmakers" star, actor Jason Matthew Smith. This match was requested by seven Page 2 readers. Browse our archives of past pairs or click here to submit a future duo for Page 2.


MLB: Braves at Mets
1 p.m. ET, ESPN
Cy hopeful Ortiz on hill.
 
ESPN Presents: "Hey rookie!"
7 p.m. ET, ESPN
Welcome to the NFL, kid.
 
Wednesday Night Baseball
7 p.m. ET, ESPN2
Red Sox at White Sox.
 
• Complete TV Listings


If you missed Page 2 over the last week, check out our back issues:
• Mon., Sept. 1: Hot Flashes
• Fri., Aug. 29: One Nation, Divided
• Thur., Aug. 28: College Lo-Down
• Wed., Aug. 27: Anna-tude Adjustment

Other featured content:
• Ultimate Scorecard: 101 best uniform numbers
• The most underrated athletes of all time
• The most overrated athletes of all time
• Page 2's Top 10 Pop Icons
Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2003
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