Our own tag team titan from Wednesday's well traveled and witty Steve has taken an old saw and made it into a reveal 61A. Sports cliché that explains 17-, 28-, 35- and 47-Across : THERE'S NO I IN TEAM (15) which spans the grid and explains that all the other nonsensical fill are sports teams with the letter "I" removed from the names. Really cute, and inventive, and a classic Friday structure with lower word count and fewer blocks, with the average word length almost 5 and 1/2 letters. This led to lots of 7 and 8 letter fill like ABYSMAL, ACERBIC, AD ASTRA, AMPERES, ATTACHE, BASKETS, BASMATI, CATBERT, ECSTASY, ENTWINE, SEETHES, STREETS, UTENSIL, VIEWING, MANIACAL, VENDETTA. Very fresh fill and almost no common answers (IRA, TEN and AHA) another rising star emerging in the LAT world from our little Corner. Remember when we used to say, Oh great that is C.C.'s third solo, or marti's? Let's see what this transplanted Brit brought.
17A. Pennsylvania athletes : P
28A. Florida athletes : M
35A. Illinois athletes : CH
47A. Michigan athletes : DETRO
and the reveal as above
61A. Sports cliché that explains 17-, 28-, 35- and 47-Across : THERE'S NO I IN TEAM (15)
classic 5 theme 15, 10, 9, 10, 15 symmetry.
1. Biting : ACERBIC. What a witty way to begin.
8. Pulley wheel : SHEAVE. The things I learn here, I never knew THIS.
14. Beyond enthusiastic : MANIACAL. Is this a CSO for marti?
16. __ arch: blood vessel section : AORTIC. Is this a CSO for marti?
19. "Charlotte's Web" monogram : EBW. Elwyn Brooks White. Now I recall why I never remember this AUTHOR's full name. Notice that he likes dachshunds as well as correct use of English.
20. Like dreamers, often : ASLEEP.
21. Word of suspicion, to Tweety : TAWT I saw a puddy tat.
22. Steering aids : REINS. I like this clue so many ways, the misdirection, the sound....
24. __ moment : A HA. Is this two words?
26. Langley-based org. : CIA. Central Intelligence Agency. I had a high scholl classmate who went to work for them and I am hoping he will tell us his adventures at our upcoming 50th reunion.
27. Maritime raptor : ERNE.
32. Booyah, e.g. : STEW. Man this was hard for me, I only know the Stuart Scott version not the FOOD.
33. Tax shelter initials : IRA. Individual Retirement Account.
34. Gray wrote one in a country churchyard : ELEGY. He originally called it Stanza's Wrote in a Country Church-Yard. LINK.
39. Teatime choice : ASSAM. Leave it to Steve to know his teas.
42. "Un-PC" was added to it in 2014 : OED. Oxford Englsih Dictionary.
43. "Take a Chance on Me" group : ABBA.
50. Company headquartered in Trollhättan : SAAB. WE had the ABBA/SAAB once before and I love it.
51. Fizzy prefix : AERate.
52. Words before hear or see : SO I.
53. Needing to be picked up : MESSY. Or perhaps this ANSWER (for Splynter?).
54. "Let it be" : STET.
56. Address label words : SEND TO.
60. Düsseldorf distances: Abbr. : KMS. The European mind, Kilometres.
64. Make final adjustments to, as a concert piano : RETUNE.
65. Family feud : VENDETTA. I recently rewatched one of my favorite Natalie Portman movies.
66. They may be intangible : ASSETS. Goodwill, for example.
67. Setting piece : UTENSIL.
1. Electrical units : AMPERES.
2. Scott Adams' Evil Director of Human Resources : CATBERT. He has such a strange mind.
3. Wrap around : ENTWINE.
4. Grafton's "__ for Ricochet" : R IS. Between Wheel of Fortune and Sue Grafton there is always a saving fill.
5. Rum desserts : BABAS.
6. Post-op areas : ICUS. Intensive Care Units.
7. Red Sox great Yastrzemski : CARL. Not to be confused with another Carl, 13D. "Understanding is a kind of __": Sagan : ECSTASY.
8. The tenth Muse, to Plato : SAPPHO.
9. Old TV knob : HORizontal.
10. Proof word : ERAT.
11. Diplomatic official : ATTACHE.
12. Taking in : VIEWING.
15. Part of XXL: Abbr. : LGE.
18. Proceed : HEAD. Like head home, or HEAD EAST.(5:17).
23. Air freshener scent : NEW CAR.
25. Ray or Jay : ALER.
28. Emcee's aid : MICrophone.
29. The Era of __: period in Notre Dame sports lore : ARA. Parseghian.
30. Toon with a cat named Bowser : MAGOO. No memory of this feline.
31. Satisfy : PLEASE. It will satisfy me if you say please....
36. Health care orgs. : HMOS.
37. Vintner's prefix : OEN. We usually have Oeno.
38. Hose users: Abbr. : FDS. Fired Departments.
39. Words on the Royal Canadian Air Force badge : AD ASTRA. Latin for 'to the stars.'
40. Is ready to blow : SEETHES.
41. "__ of Philadelphia": Oscar-winning song : STREETS. Not a happy SONG.
44. Court scores : BASKETS.
45. Long-grained Asian rice : BASMATI. We ue primarily Jasmine.
46. Beyond poor : ABYSMAL. Fun word.
48. Pre-game decision makers : TOSSES. Of a coin.
49. Property encumbrance : LIEN. Oh goody, a real property law word.
53. Eiffel's world : MONDE. Just French.
55. Level : TRUE. True dat!
57. Fall mo. : NOVember.
58. "Mon __!" : DIEU. OMG! More Frawnche!!!
59. Salon treatment : TINT. Hair salon.
62. Sinusitis-treating MD : ENT. Ear Nose and Throat.
63. Top __ : TEN. This is absolutley in my top ten favorite Steve Marron puzzles! Great Job! I did get a chance to ask Steve the genesis of this puzzle and he said, "I was working at home one morning and watching the Dan Patrick show on NBC Sports and he started to question the "No "I" in Team" tenet and that's what got me thinking." Remember to set your clocks ahead, and beware the Ides. lemonade out.