Who let the dogs out? The Mile High City is host to one of the winningest football teams in history: the Denver Bulldogs. The Australian Rules Football team has won four national championships -- three of them consecutive -- in just six seasons playing, the most of any U.S. footy team. And this ain't no Sunday in the park: Padding is prohibited, and hard hits are de rigueur. The only downside to Bulldog fanaticism is that most games are on the road; until recently, the closest teams to match up against were the Salt Lake Seagulls and the Arizona Hawks. But sports fans ready for some football -- some serious, manly football -- can head over to Bible Park at 10 a.m. on Sunday mornings to watch training once the season starts at the end of March. Go, Dogs!


Who let the dogs out? The Mile High City is host to one of the winningest football teams in history: the Denver Bulldogs. The Australian Rules Football team has won four national championships -- three of them consecutive -- in just six seasons playing, the most of any U.S. footy team. And this ain't no Sunday in the park: Padding is prohibited, and hard hits are de rigueur. The only downside to Bulldog fanaticism is that most games are on the road; until recently, the closest teams to match up against were the Salt Lake Seagulls and the Arizona Hawks. But sports fans ready for some football -- some serious, manly football -- can head over to Bible Park at 10 a.m. on Sunday mornings to watch training once the season starts at the end of March. Go, Dogs!

Shannon Sharpe's on the pre-game set, yakking away. Ed McCaffrey's in his easy chair. The guy with everything -- or everything to gain -- is University of Northern Colorado wide receiver Vincent Jackson, who should go high in next month's NFL draft, despite the presence of some big-name receivers from big-name schools. A 6'5" senior out of Widefield High School in Colorado Springs, Jackson had 1,462 yards and 21 touchdowns as a junior for the Bears, and this fall, when the team was overmatched in its move up to Division I-AA, he still caught eighty passes for 1,382 yards and eleven touchdowns, annihilating the UNC record book and winning All-American honors. Did we mention that Jackson weights 245 pounds and runs the forty in 4.4 seconds? Wow.

Shannon Sharpe's on the pre-game set, yakking away. Ed McCaffrey's in his easy chair. The guy with everything -- or everything to gain -- is University of Northern Colorado wide receiver Vincent Jackson, who should go high in next month's NFL draft, despite the presence of some big-name receivers from big-name schools. A 6'5" senior out of Widefield High School in Colorado Springs, Jackson had 1,462 yards and 21 touchdowns as a junior for the Bears, and this fall, when the team was overmatched in its move up to Division I-AA, he still caught eighty passes for 1,382 yards and eleven touchdowns, annihilating the UNC record book and winning All-American honors. Did we mention that Jackson weights 245 pounds and runs the forty in 4.4 seconds? Wow.

The foundation for all that might be in the Colorado Rockies' uncertain future, first baseman Todd Helton is one of the greatest players in baseball -- a perennial Gold Glove candidate whose .339 lifetime batting average is highest among all active players and whose .616 slugging average (the number of total bases divided by the number of at-bats) is the fourth-highest in major-league history -- even better than Barry Bonds's number. Signed through 2011 with a club option for 2012, the eight-year veteran from Tennessee remains the rock on which the young Rockies are built. Call them Todd and the Toddlers.


The foundation for all that might be in the Colorado Rockies' uncertain future, first baseman Todd Helton is one of the greatest players in baseball -- a perennial Gold Glove candidate whose .339 lifetime batting average is highest among all active players and whose .616 slugging average (the number of total bases divided by the number of at-bats) is the fourth-highest in major-league history -- even better than Barry Bonds's number. Signed through 2011 with a club option for 2012, the eight-year veteran from Tennessee remains the rock on which the young Rockies are built. Call them Todd and the Toddlers.

What can you say about the National Lacrosse League's all-time leading scorer as he plays his fourteenth and final season, except that he is the standard by which all other players are measured? Having led the Mammoth since the team arrived in Denver from Washington in 2002, Gary Gait is the Michael Jordan of his sport; he's been the NLL's most valuable player six times, a seven-time goal-scoring champion and a seven-time points leader. Every year, he's been selected as a first-team All-Pro. Gait began his pro career in 1991 with the Detroit Turbos (he was Rookie of the Year), and will finish here in Denver. "This game, this team and this town have been great to me," he says. "Now it's time to say goodbye." Lacrosse fans will never see another like him.


What can you say about the National Lacrosse League's all-time leading scorer as he plays his fourteenth and final season, except that he is the standard by which all other players are measured? Having led the Mammoth since the team arrived in Denver from Washington in 2002, Gary Gait is the Michael Jordan of his sport; he's been the NLL's most valuable player six times, a seven-time goal-scoring champion and a seven-time points leader. Every year, he's been selected as a first-team All-Pro. Gait began his pro career in 1991 with the Detroit Turbos (he was Rookie of the Year), and will finish here in Denver. "This game, this team and this town have been great to me," he says. "Now it's time to say goodbye." Lacrosse fans will never see another like him.

One of Major League Soccer's staunchest play-breakers and a leading attacker as well, Argentina-born defender Pablo Mastroeni is, at age 29, one of the league's most respected players. Named the Colorado Rapids' team captain last year, the 5'10", 170-pound speedster has split time between the Rapids and the U.S. National Team since arriving in Colorado in 2002, and his peerless work ethic earned him the team's 2004 Black and Blue Award, given to the player who best exemplifies the team's never-say-die spirit. He played his college soccer at North Carolina State.


One of Major League Soccer's staunchest play-breakers and a leading attacker as well, Argentina-born defender Pablo Mastroeni is, at age 29, one of the league's most respected players. Named the Colorado Rapids' team captain last year, the 5'10", 170-pound speedster has split time between the Rapids and the U.S. National Team since arriving in Colorado in 2002, and his peerless work ethic earned him the team's 2004 Black and Blue Award, given to the player who best exemplifies the team's never-say-die spirit. He played his college soccer at North Carolina State.

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