Posted on Sat, Jul. 31, 2004 I M A G E S STAR-TELEGRAM/TOM PENNINGTON Jerry Jones, center on the podium, and Bill Parcells, right, painted a positive picture of their relationship as they met with the media at the opening news conference for Cowboys training camp. Owner, coach still a tight fit Jim Reeves IN MY OPINION OXNARD, Calif. - The moment was so warm, so fuzzy, I almost expected Big Bill to take Jerry in his arms and plant a big, wet kiss on his lips. What a way to kick off Cowboys training camp, California-style. They sat there beside each other on a hotel tennis court turned into a makeshift stage for the camp's opening news conference, the Cowboys' owner and their larger-than-life coach, basking in the warm California sunshine and in the glow of their mutual admiration, which bubbled out like the champagne that's bottled not so very far from here. Remind me again of those dubious predictions about how shortlived this relationship might be. Was it one year? Two? Three at the outside? Friday, on the eve of the Cowboys' first workouts today in the cool sea breezes of Oxnard, it sounded like last season was simply the beginning of a beautiful friendship that could last long into the future. Of course, you don't have to remind me that Jerry Jones and Jimmy Johnson were making goo-goo eyes at each other, too, after their first winning season together. That blew up three years and two Super Bowls later and, as Jones himself pointed out Friday, he and Jimmy had a long history together. "I do think Bill and I make a good team because we complement each other," Jones said. "I'm more of a risk-taker and Bill tempers that for me, watches that I don't do anything too rash. For him, 1 and 1 always has to equal 2. I sometimes try to make it add up to 2 1/2 or 3. "Success is the key to the relationship. We had success. Maybe if we hadn't had success, things would have been different. ... I don't know." It's that smidgen of caution in Jerry's voice that hints that things might not be so cuddly between him and Big Bill if the Cowboys weren't winning. That, in turn, gives credence to us skeptics, who still wonder what will happen when the honeymoon ends. I'm one of those who gave it three years at the outside. And despite all those flattering words for each other Friday, I'm still not convinced it will go any longer than that. Some of that thought process is simple logic based on track records. Parcells isn't going to want to do this forever. He's never stayed anywhere more than five years. Why should the Cowboys be any different? "Jimmy and I only lasted five years, and we'd been friends a long time before that," Jones pointed out. "I don't know how long Bill is going to want to do this. Five years? Who knows?" That didn't stop either of them, however, from kicking off this camp by raving about how delightfully wonderful it was to work with the other last season. They've become the Siegfried and Roy of the NFL. "From a personal perspective, having the opportunity to work alongside Bill has been one of the most memorable, enjoyable and productive years of my 16 years in the NFL," Jones began his preamble. "Our working relationship has exceeded by far anything I could ever have imagined. "His drive, enthusiasm, willingness to embrace many of the ideas we've had, the way we do business, his respect for what the Dallas Cowboys -- the tradition -- are, is everything a person in my position could ask for." Wait, there's more. "I know there were some questions about our abilities to work [together] and make decisions and build," Jones continued, as he always does. "I said at that time I thought we had the same thing in mind, winning, and trying to improve every day. That's been the case. I've never worked with anyone that had almost a single-mindedness of purpose about improving in every little way we can on an everyday basis." The key to the relationship, Jones said, is that both are focused on one thing -- winning. "This has been really a great experience working in Dallas with Jerry, Stephen [Jones] and other members of the organization," Parcells said. "It's been better than I could have hoped for. "They're eager, open-minded, aggressive ... everything you'd want. We're at the point where we know each other well enough to use each other as sounding boards for ideas and schemes and thoughts about the future -- all the things a good management team has to be able to do." It is previous owner-coach relationships that have failed, media relations director Rich Dalrymple theorized, that have helped Jones and Parcells make this one work. "They both work hard at it," Dalrymple said. "They've learned from mistakes they may have made before. They talk every day and keep the lines of communication open. That's the key to any relationship." Dalrymple might have something there. "I kid [Jones] about having too many fish in the pan, too many things going on," Parcells said. "But I know where his heart is. I know his heart is still into football. "I can honestly say there hasn't been a day, if I really need to speak with him about something, regardless of where he was or what he had to do, that I couldn't get that done. That is not always the case everywhere in this league." Parcells' is the half-empty glass. Jones' is always half full, or even brimming over. "He is certainly a lot more optimistic person than I am," Parcells admitted. "He is always upbeat and eager to try to do things on the plus side. I'm more difficult to get along with, more temperamental, moodier, all of those things that coaches get to be." Bill's playing Oscar, in other words, to Jerry's Felix. More than a year after it all began, they're still the oddest couple in the NFL.