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ARLINGTON, Texas -- The patriarch of one of Americas great sports families, Calvin Hill, was standing outside the Dallas Cowboys locker room shaking his head in wonderment. He was comparing the rookie quarterback Dak Prescott to the 1971 version of Hills old teammate, Roger Staubach, who won a Super Bowl that season?after taking over as Tom Landrys guy.Roger was 29, said Hill, a four-time Pro Bowl running back, and this kid is 23. Roger wasnt ready to play continually in his first year [in 1969]. Dak? Im amazed at this young guy, amazed at his presence in the pocket.Amazed at Prescotts ability to make something out of nothing against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night, when the quarterback spun left out of trouble in overtime and found a wide open Jason Witten in the end zone for the Cowboys sixth consecutive victory.Dak reminds me of Roger in terms of being able to extend the play, Hill said, but he also reminds me some of [Tom] Brady in how he manages the game. I dont think Dak managed it well tonight, but [Jim] Schwartz is a really good defensive coordinator for Philadelphia. That front put so much pressure on Dak and yet he never lost his composure.For a change, Prescott didnt play a clean ballgame. He made some throws against Philly that, frankly, looked like fourth-round throws. But this is good news for Dallas, and maybe even better news for the NFL. The Cowboys won even when Prescott walked into AT&T Stadium with his B-minus game, which means the Cowboys are for real as a Super Bowl contender.And when the Dallas Cowboys are in the championship mix, the league benefits in a big way.Its like the Yankees, Hill said. Theres so much passion around the country for and against them. The Cowboys are back, we have two young stars in Dak and Ezekiel Elliott, and thats good for the National Football League.Of course Hill is biased. He put together back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons in the franchises Americas Team era, and he works as a Cowboys consultant in player development. But as the father of Grant, a two-time national basketball champ at Duke who lost his near-certain place among the NBAs all-time greats to injury, Hill knows a thing or three about winners, and how much sports needs marquee programs like the Blue Devils, the Yankees, and the Cowboys.Hill was a student at Yale in the 60s?when the Cowboys first started to win, when he would join his classmates in front of a frat house TV to watch Don Meredith and Bob Hayes. Looking for Bullet Bob to catch a bomb, Hill said.Those were the days, my friend. Into the 70s, football fans up and down the Eastern Seaboard would wait breathlessly for lesser 1 p.m. games to end to watch the Dallas Cowboys in the 4 p.m. national game or, better yet, the marquee game on Monday night.Now youve got NFL games on all the time, Hill said through a sigh. Thursday night, Sunday, Sunday night, Monday night, and sometimes you have teams in these night games that nobody really follows except their own fans. We used to have national teams. The Redskins of George Allen and Joe Gibbs. Landrys Cowboys. Its been a long time for the Cowboys, but having a national team back is good for the sport.The sport needs it now like never before. Ratings are down and uninspiring play is up. Peyton Manning has left the building, Aaron Rodgers isnt winning big, Russell Wilson isnt running, and Cam Newton and Andrew Luck are losing. Brady and the New England Patriots could use a little help, you know. They cant carry this business on their shoulder pads forever.The Cowboys are arriving in the nick of time. They havent won the big one in two decades; in fact, theyve only won three playoff games in that period. But now they have a monster offensive line and a rookie running back, Elliott, who summons the memories of the signature Dallas backs before him, the likes of Hill, Tony Dorsett and Emmitt Smith.They have Dez Bryant, who returned from injury Sunday night to catch the tying 22-yard touchdown pass from Prescott late in the fourth quarter and to finish with 113 big-play yards on four catches. They have old man Witten, who wasnt a factor against the Eagles until he needed to be in overtime.They have the 135th player chosen in Aprils draft, Prescott, who did enough to beat the No. 2 player chosen in the draft, Carson Wentz. Prescott was smacked around by Philly before he reminded everyone why he should keep Tony Romo on the bench even when Romos healthy enough to play.In a recent conversation with ESPN The Magazine, the Dallas coach who started Romo in 2006, Bill Parcells, described the calls for Prescott to become the permanent starter a rush to judgment. The Hall of Fame coach explained that a half-dozen games represented a painfully small sample size, and that Prescott first needed to stare down a late deficit, some real adversity.He hasnt thrown four interceptions yet, Parcells said, and then had the press and the fans getting restless and the players looking at him sideways, and maybe his nose is broken too. Thats when you find out about a quarterback.Prescott survived his brutal end-zone interception near the end of the first half, and needed a 30-yard run by Chris Jones, the Dallas punter, of all people, to get through the night.But the great ones -- or the great ones-to-be -- find ways to score more points than the other guys one way or another. When this 29-23 victory was complete, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones called it one of the best wins Ive ever been a part of and declared Prescott the starter for the next game against Cleveland.I know that Romo can make chicken salad out of chicken whatever, Jones said, but so can Dak.Calvin Hill, always cutting a dignified figure, put it like this:I think were learning how to win.The Dallas Cowboys are back in business, which is always good for the business of the NFL. Discount NFL Jerseys . As the crowd erupted, Davis knocked the ball off the glass and back into his hands. With 1:14 to go in overtime, Davis sixth block also became his 17th rebound. That, along with his 32 points -- which tied a career high -- proved too much for Denver to overcome, and the Pelicans held on for their third straight victory, 111-107 on Sunday night. 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NBA officials ruled the court unplayable in the Bucks final exhibition game on Oct. 25 because players were slipping, and the game was cancelled midway through the first period. Fifteen years into his career as a WWE superstar, John Cena has heard the rumors and assumptions regarding his future.With myriad acting, hosting and marketing opportunities sprouting around him, fans and critics alike have questioned whether the 15-time WWE world champion might soon transition into a part-time wrestling schedule.Further questions abound about whether Cena was ready to follow in the footsteps of Dwayne The Rock Johnson -- whom he calls the ideal example of WWE superstars having talent beyond the WWE ring -- down a road toward full-time crossover into the mainstream.Cena, 39, understands his situation to be unique.Ill answer it like this: Every single day that I dont have an outside obligation, I will fulfill any commitment that I have to WWE, Cena told ESPN.com. And I will attach this quote with it that every outside obligation I have is to expand the brand of WWE and there has never been a superstar to say that before.Cenas plate, at the moment, is considerably full. One day after competing in a triple-threat match for the WWE world championship at the No Mercy pay-per-view, he announced a partnership with Wonderful Pistachios on Monday for a new $55 million advertising campaign.As the voice of a new character, Ernie the Elephant, Cena will debut a pair of Get Crackin ads during Monday Night Football and Dancing with the Stars. Later in the football season, he will be joined in two more ads by Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman.The character has a bit of a sense of humor; hes not afraid to tell you how he feels, Cena said of Ernie the Elephant. So I kind of fit that mold as well.In between WWE live events, Cena has also been travelling to promote his role on E!s new series Total Bellas, a spin-off of its popular Total Divas reality series featuring WWE superstars. Earlier this year, he starred in a series of Hefty trash bag ads and hosted both the 2016 ESPY Awards on ESPN and the first season of the competition reality series American Grit on Fox.Along with his burgeoning acting career, Cena has proven the crossover ability of his personal brand, from Hollywood to Madison Avenue. Hes quick to remind us that it hasnt been an overnight thing.It hasnt been like, Here kid, heres the key to the city, Cena said. Keep in mind it has been a 15-year journey for me and an over 30-year journey for the WWE. I guess my mission statement is now to let the world know on a global scale that WWE certainly is a wonderful form of entertainment but its superstars are more than just superstars inside the ring. They do so much more outside the ring and have so much more to offer.Along with a tireless work ethic, Cena has become a master of corporatespeak, with subtle product references and polished responses meant to protect the interests of both the company and his own brand. It has left no surprise as to why hes so often called upon to represent WWE in a variety of public forums.The self-proclaimed Face That Runs The Place hasnt been shy, either, about promoting his ability to speak Mandarin or his knowledge of WWEs business plans. Cena is a brand ambassador as much as he is a promoter, which is a role he admits that he envisioned for himself from the very first time he stepped into a WWE ring.Its a reflection of passion, Cena said. The Wonderful pistachios campaign is a great example -- I dont involve myself with a project I dont feel passionate about. I could talk your ear off about internal statistics for WWE and what we have planned for the future. Why do I know that stuff? Because I like to do all that stuff.That sort of depth and feel isnt for everybody. Some people just like getting into the ring and doing what they do.Along with his competing passions outside the ring, the idea that Cena was ready for a decreased workload took greater significance at SummerSlam on Aug. 21 in Brooklyn, New York. Following Cenas loss too AJ Styles, he left behind his armband in the center of the ring.ddddddddddddThe gesture appeared to be very much symbolic of something greater, akin to when amateur wrestlers leave behind their shoes in the center of the mat following their final match. Moreover, Cena disappeared from WWE television in the subsequent weeks.So was there significance to the gesture that went beyond Cenas on-screen storyline (which included Styles wearing the armband in the aftermath)?Of course there was significance for me in leaving the Never Give Up armband in the ring, Cena said.When pressed for more details, Cena wouldnt budge.Thats for me, man, he said.This is pro wrestling, after all. Its always difficult to tell whether a performer is furthering a scripted storyline when speaking publicly. In Cenas case, there is even more blurring of that line considering hes one of the last WWE superstars to compete under his own given name.While Cena certainly recognizes the advantages of that, hes just as quick to admit the challenges that come with it.There is no off being John Cena, its always on, Cena said. In a way, I think that has helped me, because over the years I have been able to be humble. I have been able to be humiliated in front of the WWE universe in a good way. They have shared in my successes and my failures and it went from 12 years ago this kid trying to make it in the WWE using hip-hop as a vehicle trying to establish an identity to over a decade and a half later everybody just relating to the human being that just is John Cena.Transitioning from a more urban and brash character to the wholesome All-American he portrays today was much more calculated than evolutionary, Cena says. He credits his forward-thinking vision that WWE would soon switch their content to a PG-rated platform (which it did in 2008) and admitted he had become stagnant as The Doctor of Thuganomics.To me, there was definitely some method behind it, Cena said. Hip-hop certainly is in sync with the youth and every day that passes I grow less youthful, as much as I have tried to hold onto it. I knew that the platform really wouldnt be indicative of success. I knew [the PG format] would just drastically change the style and almost cripple the character so I was the one proactively who said no and said I would like to take everything another way.Closing in on age 40, Cena admits that hes working smarter inside the ring and constantly evolving, but that doesnt mean hes holding back on taking risks. He quickly referenced his match with Styles at SummerSlam (praised as one of 2016s best matches), offering it up for folks who need to be critical to go back and watch on the WWE Network.Cenas answers to tough questions are too well-thought out to reveal anything he hadnt planned for, making it difficult to guess just how active he intends to be as a wrestler entering 2017. Hes committed to only choosing outside opportunities that reflect WWE superstars in the best possible light, in an effort to change preconceived notions of pro wrestlers outside of the ring.In July it was announced that Fox had renewed his American Grit series for as second season. He has also taken on more acting roles of late, including appearances in four movies in 2015.As far as his wrestling career, Cena remains committed to giving his all each time he steps into the ring. Its all part of what he calls an eternal promise he has made to himself regarding whether he can still perform at the same level of his peers.Right now the roster is loaded with characters, Cena said. It demands that you perform at your best every single night. I dont believe in shortchanging the consumer. I believe in giving the WWE universe what they want and the day I cant do that is the day I move aside. 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