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Olson, 26, was assigned by her paper to the Patriots beat this summer. On Sept. 17, a day after New England had beat the Colts in their second game of the season, she was interviewing defensive back Maurice Hurst in the Pats' locker room in Foxboro, Mass.—with her back to the adjacent shower room—when she started hearing shouts of "Make her look! Make her look!" Then, says Olson, tight end Zeke Mowatt, who was naked, interrupted her interview with Hurst, made a lewd gesture and said, "Is this what you want?"
According to Olson, Mowatt made more obscene comments, and four other players, all naked, approached her, making similar remarks. But she refused to look up. Olson believes this harassment came about because several Patriots had seen her waiting in the locker room the day before in Indianapolis, and they apparently thought she was lingering to see naked men. "I didn't want to be in there any longer than I had to," she says. "I was in there...with three members of the p.r. staff, waiting to interview players."
On Sept. 19 she received an apology from New England general manager Pat Sullivan for the Sept. 17 incident, and on the 20th, coach Rod Rust condemned the incident in a team meeting. But all wasn't forgotten on Sunday. "I can't disagree with the players' actions," Kiam told another Herald writer, Kevin Mannix. "Your paper is asking for trouble by sending a female reporter to cover the team. Freedom of speech is fine, but letting a woman in the locker room goes beyond that."
League policy states that, following a waiting period of no more than five to seven minutes after a game, the home and visiting locker rooms must be opened to all accredited members of the press, and that the press is to have immediate access to all players and coaches. Olson said that three front-office employees followed her through the New England locker room in Cincinnati, so she went to Kiam to ask if he would like to shadow her, too. He said no. After she walked away, two male sportswriters overheard Kiam tell club officials, "What a classic bitch. No wonder none of the players like her."
Sullivan said in a statement released Monday night that he had conducted an investigation of the Sept. 17 incident and had fined one unnamed player for "conduct detrimental to the club." No statement was made by Kiam.
There were indications on Monday that it would take a terrific offer—two first-round draft picks plus a player or another pick-to pry quarterback Steve Walsh from the suddenly stubborn Cowboys, who spent the weekend agonizing over whether to trade a player some members of the organization think has the potential to be better than starter Troy Aikman. "We're honestly torn," said one Cowboy executive early Monday.
According to one line of thinking, Dallas should trade Walsh because a quarterback controversy is inevitable as long as he is Aikman's backup. Another says that the Cowboys should keep Walsh because a jillion quarterbacks get hurt every year, and a quality backup is a necessity.
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