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College football star Maurice Clarett gives rugby a try

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Cheers and Jeers,Sports,NFL,John Keim

Maurice Clarett is making a comeback. Sort of. He's returning to sports, but not football. Instead, the former Ohio State star running back and one-time Mike Shanahan draft pick has turned to rugby.

And he wants to make it onto the U.S. Olympic team. The shame of it for Clarett is if he had taken care of himself in college, he might still be playing in the NFL. Instead, since helping Ohio State to a National Championship as a freshman, he was ruled ineligible and drafted in the third round only to be cut and later imprisoned.

Now he's training with the Tiger Rugby Olympic Development Program in Columbus, Ohio. The goal, apparently, is Rio in 2016.

"He's ridiculous. That's all I can say," Tiger Rugby director Paul Holmes told Rugbymag.com. "His footwork is phenomenal. He's nowhere near conditioned for rugby, but that will come. ... The stuff he's doing in the gym right now, he's just ridiculous."

That's what they used to say about him on the football field.

- John Keim

jkeim@washingtonexaminer.com

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