Agent urges Smith to speak

2-13-2001 BY GEOFF HOBSON

His agent is urging quarterback Akili Smith to make some kind of public statement about last week's DUI arrest.

"He knows what he did was wrong," said Leigh Steinberg Tuesday. "He knows it's wrong to get behind the wheel of a car after consuming alcohol.

"He understands. And I'm hoping he speaks to it. This is hard for him and it might take him awhile to talk about it. But I think it's something he's got to look at doing."

Smith, 25, was arrested early one morning driving the wrong way down a one-way street in his hometown of San Diego and faces a March 1 court date.

The Bengals are concerned about the incident, but say it won't prevent Smith from returning to Cincinnati next month to begin offseason workouts and learn the new playbook.

CD SITS OUT: What did jet lag do to Bengals Pro Bowl running back Corey Dillon? He turned down agent Leigh Steinberg's offer to go to Monday night's glittering ESPY awards in Las Vegas.

Dillon was up for Best Record Breaking Performance of the Year, but lost out to Pete Sampras' becoming men's tennis all-time Grand Slam singles title champion.

"I told him I'd be his date, but he wanted to stay put after the last month," Steinberg said. "He went to Seattle, then to the Super Bowl, then to the Pro Bowl. He just didn't want to get on a plane again and wanted to stay home."

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