Sign on dotted line, Deion, and you'll never hear a disparaging word

August 18, 2004|By PETER SCHMUCK

SURE, IT'S selfish, but I want the Ravens to sign Deion Sanders more than I want world peace - and, as you know, nothing would make me happier than for people of all nationalities to live in harmony. I also believe that children are the future, but we're getting a little off subject.

So I'm making this one-time offer to Neion Deion:

Sign with the Ravens and I'll guarantee you positive pub. Say whatever you want. Do whatever you want. Make the occasional big play. Fumble a couple of punts. You name it. We'll get along just fine.

Terrell Owens passed up this amazing opportunity when he insisted on playing for the Eagles. Now look at him, getting ripped here almost every day. He would have been better off ignoring a chain letter. Don't make the same mistake.

This is the perfect place for Prime Time, right down to the purple uniforms, which should go nicely with the rest of your wardrobe. It's also a great opportunity to win a huge, gaudy diamond ring, not that you have any room left on your body for another big piece of jewelry.

We'll eventually get over the fact that you once lowered yourself to play for the Redskins - maybe after you intercept Mark Brunell a couple of times at FedEx Field - then you'll be one of us.

You'll also be a Page 2 columnist's dream.

Don't make me beg.

Baseball owners are holding their quarterly meeting today and tomorrow in Philadelphia, apparently hoping their non-announcement on the future home of the Montreal Expos will be overshadowed by the Ray Lewis/Terrell Owens controversy or the Jeff Garcia/Terrell Owens controversy or maybe a brand-new Terrell Owens controversy. It's been almost a week.

The owners telegraphed their intention to postpone a decision on the Expos for at least a couple of more weeks, so there probably won't be much to write home about, but here's a prediction: One of the Washington papers will break a story quoting unnamed major league sources who claim the owners are now leaning toward Northern Virginia and will make a compensation proposal to Orioles owner Peter Angelos before the end of the season. Just a hunch.

Meanwhile, the Orioles will hold their D.C. FanFest at Farragut Square today as a show of appreciation to all those Washington baseball fans who can't stand the thought of a shorter drive to the ballpark.

Police and emergency personnel are bracing for a crowd of 23, one of them dressed like a big orange bird.

Michael Phelps bagged two more gold medals yesterday and now stands just three medals away from becoming only the second athlete to win eight medals in a single Olympiad.

Even if he ended up with six or seven, it would be one of the greatest Olympic performances of all time, which isn't bad for a 19-year-old kid from the Baltimore suburbs.

So why the lingering feeling of unfulfillment? Because everyone was so focused on gold that you'd think his two bronze medals weren't even worth melting down for baby shoes.

Personally, I blame Speedo. Not because it put a $1 million bounty on seven gold medals and put an extra layer of pressure on Michael, but because of the way I would look in one of those little swimsuits.

Let me get this straight. The U.S. Olympic basketball team is having trouble coping with the "international" style of play? Isn't that just a nice way of saying Larry Brown is stuck with a bunch of guys who can't play as a team and has let the craziest inmate (Allen Iverson) run the asylum?

Final thought: Don't really get the new reality show, The Benefactor. It's not like it'll be the first time that Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban gave $1 million to somebody with no real talent. Personally, I can't wait until The Simple Life passes through Baltimore. My wife says I can invite Paris Hilton over, but only if she promises not to shed her skin in the house.

Readers can contact Peter Schmuck at peter.schmuck@baltsun.com.

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