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Hopeful words from Ted

It was just three small syllables _ "How is he?" _ but they said more than any scientific assessment from his doctors about how Ted Williams is faring in the wake of his open-heart surgery in January. Those words were the first the Red Sox slugger has spoken in two months, and they came this week as his son was explaining that ex-Sen. John Glenn had been checking up on him. Saying anything is impressive given Williams' condition. Doctors say it is more encouraging that he could form a question that indicated he understood what John Henry was telling him, even interrupting before his son could finish the sentence. Williams, 82, remains in the critical-care unit of the San Diego hospital where he was transferred late last month, but he has been breathing on his own for a week, is getting more alert, and doctors hope he can be moved to a regular room within two weeks.

QUESTION OF THE DAY

When was the last time Florida lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament?

Answer below.

CHECK IT OUT

ROCKET TV: Yankees pitcher Roger Clemens is scheduled to appear on QVC at 8 tonight from the University of Tampa to hawk his autographed merchandise. Beginning at 7, the first 250 people to arrive may sit in on the broadcast. Admission is free. For information call 1-800-345-1515.

ANSWER

The Gators were ousted by Iowa State 64-60 on March 17, 1995, in Lon Kruger's last NCAA appearance with the school. He left for Illinois after the next season.

CORRECTION

Rays pitcher Paul Wilson, left, was misidentified in a photo Wednesday.

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