You've read the newspaper. You may even have seen the short-lived TV show.

Soon, you'll be able to wear the sweater.

Or as USA Today itself might say in its distinctively punchy style: We're getting into licensing.

In an unusual move, the self-styled "Nation's Newspaper" announced that it has hooked up with a marketing firm and will launch a line of USA Today-brand sportswear.

Reason: " ... To meet the interests of both our readers and advertisers," said Thomas J. Farrell, USA Today's general manager.

Coca-Cola and McDonald's already have brand-name apparel lines, but USA Today is believed to be the first journalistic organ to go retail.

McPaper, as it is sometimes known, will also have its own line of paper products.

The new merchandise will be:

Sold in national sporting goods and department stores.

Available by 1992.

Marketed by Schlaifer Nance & Co., a small Atlanta company run by a husband-and-wife team.

More factoids:

Schlaifer Nance's previous greatest hits include supervising the licensing of Andy Warhol's work and of the Cabbage Patch kids.

The USA Today clothes: Men's and women's casual sportswear, "designed in accordance with the newspaper's upbeat, colorful, graphic style," according to USA Today's parent company, Arlington-based Gannett Co.