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Marvin Lewis on proposed race: Ross 'not a circus act'

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Marvin Lewis is calling the race early.

The Bengals coach quickly put the kibosh on a proposed 40-yard dash-off between his first-round pick John Ross and Cincinnati Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton, telling Cincinnati reporters Friday, "John is not a circus act."

Shame.

Hamilton first suggested the race between the 40-yard dash champion and himself, saying that the two could test each other's speed "for a charity event" or something of the kind. Ross responded Friday, saying he's up to it, but not right now.

"It would be awesome to do that and we could probably work out something later," Ross told ESPN's Katherine Terrell on Friday. "Right now I'm just focused on being a Bengal. I don't know what the future holds, but if he wants to do something for the community later or for charity, that would be awesome. Right now I'm just focused on being a football player."

Double shame.

We're sure Lewis and Ross are objectively in the right here, choosing to prevent the first-round wideout from potentially aggravating an injury rather than racing a Red. But where's the fun in that?

On top of supporting charities, a 40-yard dash between Mr. 4.22 and baseball's best base-stealer would promote a very worthy cause: Keeping us football die-hards entertained during the pigskin-poor summer doldrums. Do it for the fans. That's charitable enough.

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