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Relays the latest thing to run its way out of Modesto

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The biggest surprise about the Relays' exit was the late Tom Moore not rising out of his grave and shouting: "You're going to do what?"

First, it was the 16-team Modesto Junior College Tournament. Next, the Athletics. This week, the Relays. What's next? Gallo? The Arch in Denair?

Politicians truly are out of touch when they hold the presidential debate on Friday night -- high school football night.

He was raised in Modesto and directed the Cal Band for nearly 30 years with spirit and class: The late Robert O. Briggs.

Three weeks into the season, one safe conclusion: The 2-1 49ers no longer are dreadful.

The Raiders soon enter their bye week -- goodbye week for Lane Kiffin.

A thought bubble to insert above nearly every Kiffin photo and TV shot: "Please fire me."

File under "getting the last laugh:" Joe Torre and the Dodgers make the playoffs while the Yankees and their $209 million payroll stay home.

I guess USC is not the best team of all time, after all.

Pete Carroll to his therapist: "Every time I go to Corvallis, I get these nightmares ..."

Ohio State wonders, "Where was that USC team against us?"

Cal collapsed after its first loss last year. Today, the Bears entertain Colorado State after their first loss.

Nevada's Colin Kaepernick (Pitman) carries a heavier load after injuries to his running backs. The Wolf Pack needs him tonight against archrival UNLV.

Question: Why are ex-Franklin coach Tom Verner and his friends allowed within one mile of any high school football field?

The Giants are kicking around a trade of Matt Cain for more power. I'd like to see Cain pitch with more power in his lineup.

The Lions grimly forged on with Matt Millen -- until they were smoked by the 49ers.

The Syracuse athletic director says football coach Greg Robinson "is not cutting it." Update your résumé, coach.

The next time I attend a Raider press conference, I'll bring boxing gloves.

The Patriots were fooled and beaten by something that looked like the old single wing (Dolphins). Hard to blame Tom Brady's injury for that one.

One thing the Yorks and the 49ers got right -- retiring Steve Young's No. 8.

He made it to Pasadena: Fresno State's Tom Brandstater (Turlock) today in the Rose Bowl vs. UCLA.

Minus Tiger Woods and saddled by a less-than-effective Phil Mickelson, the U.S. wins the Ryder Cup. PGA Tour depth prevails.

I'll just assume Tiger Woods never will ride his driver like a toy horse (Boo Weekley).

Wipeouts: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Mets.

John Elway is engaged to an ex-Raider cheerleader. Run the tape: "I always wanted to marry a Raider."

The Giants' "tryout season" salvaged by two words: Tim Lincecum.

Out: The stars of track and field. In: Lance Armstrong for next year's Amgen Tour of California.

About the tribute (statue?) to Moore planned at Modesto Junior College Stadium: Full speed ahead, especially now.

To our track colleagues in Sacramento, now that they've inherited the Relays: Handle with care.

Bee sports columnist Ron Agostini can be reached or 578-2302.