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Picked-up pieces while submitting a sealed bid on Manny's $6.9 million, 4,500-square-foot condo on the 37th floor of the Ritz-Carlton Towers . . .

Josh Beckett, Guillermo Mota, and an overpaid Mike Lowell for two Double A players and two Single A players? Back in the days when Charlie Finley was strip-mining the Oakland A's, commissioner Bowie Kuhn used to block these kinds of deals. Could the trade have been any sweeter if Theo were still on the job?

Byron ''Whizzer" White, Omar Bradley, Gerald Ford, George H.W. Bush . . . and now . . . Bob Kraft. These men make up a virtual Mount Rushmore of NCAA student-athletes who went on to greatness; they are among those who've been awarded the prestigious Theodore Roosevelt Award. Whizzer White starred at Colorado, then played for the Detroit Lions before becoming a Supreme Court justice. Bradley played football and baseball at West Point and later became a decorated general in World War II. Ford was a varsity lineman at Michigan who became president, and Bush was captain of the Yale baseball team who also became president. Kraft? He played lightweight football at Columbia before becoming a tireless philanthropist and owner of the Super Bowl champs.

According to the NCAA, the ''Teddy" is annually bestowed on ''a former NCAA student-athlete for whom competitive athletics in college and attention to physical well-being after graduation have been important factors in a distinguished career of national significance and achievement." Addressing Kraft's athletic qualifications, a release sent out by Columbia states that he earned ''a varsity letter as a back and end for the lightweight football team in 1960."

According to Brett Hoover, assistant director of the Ivy League, lightweight football was a varsity sport at Columbia in 1960. In those days, Columbia lightweights played in the Eastern Lightweight Football League -- or the ELF League, as it was commonly known. Columbia eliminated the sport in 1976, and today's aspiring lightweights would have to attend Penn, Cornell, Princeton, Army, or Navy to play what is now known as Sprint Football. ''It's not necessarily a popular sport," said Hoover.

In the early years after he bought the Patriots, Kraft's media guide bio stated, ''While attending Columbia, he also played football." In 1999, the reference was amended to read, ''While attending Columbia, he also played 'scatback' for the Lions." Kraft's football-playing days disappeared from the bio entirely after 1999, but now he's a Teddy winner, right alongside Whizzer White and Omar Bradley.

Manny Ramírez's pad will be the site of at least one radio remote today as a realty company attempts to unload the slugger's posh digs at the Ritz. According to a press release put out by Big Fish Communications, ''Radio interviews will be held on a first-come, first-serve basis and by advance booking only . . . tours can be scheduled in advance with the on-site media contact." Try to remember that this is the home of the man who doesn't like Boston because his privacy is invaded, the same man who allowed the Sunday Globe Magazine to photograph his family and his son's Fenway-themed bedroom.

The first-place Clippers have become LA's team at the Staples Center. Weird to see the Clips in first place and the Lakers in the basement.

Lots of gloom in Foxborough yesterday. Tom Brady wore a hood over his head while standing in front of his locker and strolling out to practice. Bill Belichick was subdued even by his own standards. Asked about mounting ''frustration," Belichick said, ''I don't think anybody's happy about losing to Kansas City, if that's what you're asking." If you want to know Belichick, buy David Halberstam's ''The Education of a Coach." Disclosure of a particularly salty sideline exchange between Belichick and Bill Parcells (when they were still working together) is worth the price of the book.

Has there ever been a greater waste of man-hours than the Terrell Owens hearing? The media covered it like the O.J. trial, Andy Reid missed half a day of work testifying, and arbitrator Richard Bloch wrote a 38-page decision upholding the Eagles' penalty.

Larry Lucchino said the Sox would have a general manager by the start of the winter meetings. The meetings start Monday in Dallas. With Theo's minions leaving one at a time (Josh Byrnes, Peter Woodfork, is Jed Hoyer next?), the Sox would do well to go back to Old School and pay attention to the sage wisdom of an in-house baseball man like Jeremy Kapstein.

Good for Jeff Feagles, punting in 283 consecutive NFL games. It speaks to talent and longevity. But he should not get to replace defensive lineman Jim Marshall in the record books. Marshall played 282 straight games in the trenches. No lightweight, he.

What's up with Mark Blount? Not a strong rebounder or defender, he's in the second season of a six-year, $38 million contract and he's complaining about not getting the ball enough?

The Heisman goes to Reggie Bush. USC quarterback Matt Leinart has had a season worthy of a second Heisman, and Texas QB Vince Young was in the running until his mediocre game against A&M, but the trophy goes to Bush simply because he's the most explosive player in college football. Every touch is electric. Gale Sayers-like.

That's Newton South's Matt Stehle leading Harvard's basketball team to a 4-0 record, including a 69-56 win over UC-Davis Sunday. Stehle's youngest brother, Ben, will hold down the frontcourt for South this winter. Massachusetts high school basketball practice started yesterday.

Speaking of high schools, that was Patriots quarterback Doug Flutie at Natick's practice yesterday. Doug's nephew, BC-bound Billy Flutie, will play for Natick against Winthrop in tonight's Division 2 playoff game at Endicott. Best local high school football team not in a playoff game? That would be Walpole. The Rebels went 10-1, lost to Natick by 1 point, and outscored the opposition, 389-107, in the Bay State League.

Can't wait for Gerald Green's next NBA Rookie Diary entry in Sports Illustrated.

No team won eight straight postseason games until the 2004 Red Sox did it after falling behind the Yankees, 3-0, in the 19-8 game. A year later, the White Sox repeated the feat, winning eight straight after losing the first game of the ALCS. And to think it all started when a guy ran to first base on what should have been an inning-ending strikeout.

He Who Must Not Be Named going to the Dodgers? Simply too good to be true.

Job well done to Billy Griffith, Ron Indrisano, Marvin Pave, Judy Van Handle, and Tito Stevens, longtime Globies settling into well-deserved retirements. Every loss is a blow to our institutional memory and simply cannot be replaced.

Dan Shaughnessy is a Globe columnist. His e-mail address is

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