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Wednesday, October 8, 1997 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Sideline Chatter

Switzer's Gun, Mouth Always Loaded

Let's let others have their say about sports of all sorts today, starting with these excerpts from a conference-call exchange between New York writers and Dallas Cowboy Coach Barry Switzer:

Question: "How could you take a gun to the airport?"

Switzer: "I'm 60, I'm absent-minded and I forgot about the thing. Do you think I was trying to hijack the plane to Cuba?

"And I keep it loaded. What's an unloaded gun good for? You people live in New York, you-all ought to understand that."

They said it

-- Mike Ditka, former Chicago Bear coach, on his return to Chicago on Sunday as coach of the New Orleans Saints: "You get a little melancholy when you see the (Chicago) skyline. But, hey, I like (the New Orleans) skyline. I like the smell of that swamp water. I like those crawdaddies crawling around. I see those rattlers rolling around. I like that."

-- Washington cornerback Cris Dishman, on his former team, the Tennessee Oilers: "The difference between the Redskins and Oilers is the difference between first class and third class."

-- George Steinbrenner, Yankee owner, after his team's Game 5 loss to Cleveland: "I'm gonna lay back. I've got a young son that is taking over with my son-in-law. . . . The young fellas, the young elephants, are coming into the tent. I'm getting too old to go through this all the time."

-- Colorado relief pitcher Steve Reed, a native of Los Angeles, on the Dodgers failing to reach postseason play: "I hated the Dodgers from the day I was born. I think everybody in the league feels the same way about the Dodgers. They think they're above everybody else."

-- Coach Lindy Infante, whose Indianapolis Colts have gone 0-5 while his overall record has dropped to 33-52: "I don't think all of a sudden I've become a lousy football coach overnight."

They wrote it

-- Mike Downey, Los Angeles Times, on the rising pro-rasslin' career of Bill Goldberg, former Georgia Bulldog and Atlanta Falcon defensive tackle: "I am happy to see a Falcon find a more dignified job."

-- Downey, again: "I went to see `In & Out' at my neighborhood movie threater. I thought it would be about a Clipper's last-second shot."

-- Bernie Lincicome, Chicago Tribune, on the benching of Bear quarterback Rick Mirer: "Where he needs to be is in Barcelona. He could be big in Barcelona, or maybe in the Arena League. O, Canada. Anywhere but here."

-- Headline, San Diego Union-Tribune, on Florida State's 47-0 rout of Miami: "Hurricanes reduced to hot air."

Compiled by Chuck Ashmun, Seattle Times

Copyright (c) 1997 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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