THE GUNS OF JANUARY
The "coalition" agreement accepted by representatives of the warring AAU and NCAA, after meeting with Attorney General Kennedy, has collapsed because 1) what the AAU thought it had agreed to was not the same as what the NCAA thought it had agreed to and vice versa; 2) the representative of the NAIA, the small-college group which also was a party to the near-agreement, did not obtain his association's endorsement of the coalition plan; 3) the AAU at its convention refused to approve an important part of the agreement specifying that after the 1964 Olympics the coalition, instead of the AAU, could apply for representation in the International Amateur Athletic Federation, the world governing body for track and field, the most important sport at stake in the feud.
The breakdown seems to have led to a hardening of negotiating attitudes and to an unseemly exchange of vituperation, most of the latter emanating from the AAU. Now General Douglas MacArthur has agreed to arbitrate the dispute. We hope he can obtain the same kind of reasonable compromise that Robert Kennedy almost secured—but that he will do better than the Attorney General by making his compromise stick.
THE INSIDE TRACK
•Sam Huff, New York Giant linebacker, is thinking of quitting after one more season although he is only 28 years old. Huff has a good year-round connection as a fabric salesman and works as an ABC radio commentator on the side.
•Ray Mears, Tennessee basketball coach, has been forced to leave his team again because of illness. It is doubtful that he will return this season. Bill Gibbs, assistant coach, has taken over.
•If Buddy Parker decides to quit coaching the Pittsburgh Steelers, which seems likely, the next head coach will be Harry Gilmer, former Alabama All-America and now backfield coach of the Minnesota Vikings.
•Sandy Koufax and his doctors claim that the Los Angeles pitcher's finger is "nearly normal" again, but the Dodger brass is waiting anxiously for spring training to see what happens when Koufax throws his fast ball and exerts direct pressure on the index finger.
•Arthur C. Allyn of the Chicago White Sox is thinking of putting an American Football League team in Comiskey Park, and George Halas of the Chicago Bears is worried. Comiskey Park has a seating capacity of 46,550 compared to 36,755 at Wrigley Field, where the Bears play.
•Bill Sharman, former Boston Celtic star, is high on Walt Hazzard, UCLA guard, whom he compares to Bob Cousy. "Hazzard can make any pro basketball club," says Sharman.
PAY TV, NO
New York publicity man Eddie Jaffe insisted last week that the next National Football League championship game will be shown on nationwide, closed-circuit theater TV. "NBC got this year's game for $650,000," said Jaffe. "There are a number of closed-circuit groups who will bid over a million for it." But NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle stated, "We didn't have closed-circuit theater TV this year and we won't have it next year and we won't have it in 1964 or the year after that or the year after that. We want the game to have national exposure." Jaffe replied, "I don't care what Rozelle says. The players want it. It could gross three to four million."
REDS SAFE AT HOME
The late Powel Crosley, owner of the Cincinnati Reds, probably wanted more than anything the perpetuation of his baseball team as a Cincinnati institution. In these days of franchise transfers it was no sure thing. Now his wish is safe for at least 10 years.
After long and embittered negotiation, in which charges of "politics" and worse were expressed, trustees of the Powel Crosley Foundation okayed the sale of the club to Bill DeWitt for $4,625,000. DeWitt agreed to put four prominent Cincinnatians on his board of directors, and they represent the balance of power on the board. More important, DeWitt also agreed to keep the Reds in Cincinnati for at least 10 years. He has, in effect, just about consented to make the Reds something of a "civic enterprise."
FAIR IS FAIR
A note from Albuquerque reads, "According to UPI, an eagle attacked a Volkswagen near Melrose, N. Mex., broke its windshield and clawed two rabbit hunters inside. Conservation should work two ways. I think SCORECARD should remind all eagles that Volkswagens are a protected species."
FIVE GOOD MEN
The title Professional Tennis, Inc. may sound like a union formed by the touring pros. It is not a union and the touring pros have nothing to do with it. PTI is an organization dreamed up by five northern California teaching pros, who, after listening all these years to the whining and bickering about who's to blame for the sad plight of our Davis Cup teams, have made a positive move. The five men (Dick Stevens, Tom Stowe, Chet Murphy, Fred Earl and John Gardiner) have been joined by 22 other teaching pros from the same area and have formulated this plan. Seventh-grade boys from a yet undetermined number of schools will be given a series of skill tests. Those showing the highest promise will receive free formal instruction. After considerable training, the boys and the pros will hold a two-day tourney at Carmel in the spring. The most promising boys appearing in the tourney will go on to even more intensive instruction. In this way PTI hopes to develop top-ranking junior players and—even more important—establish a continuing development program.
The Wilson Company has donated 50 rackets as a start and the Converse Rubber Company three dozen pairs of shoes. Other gear will be bought with money donated by people who like the PTI idea.
We think PTI's program should be countrywide. Tennis, everyone?
Here's another Texas story, this one told by George Dolan in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. A girls' riding team, the Possum Kingdom Drillettes, was going to the Santa Rosa Roundup celebration. The girls had to pay $4 each to have their horses transported by truck. Bob Burrell of Graham was collecting the trucking fee when he found one of the youngsters in tears. "Don't worry, honey," Burrell told her. "If you can't raise the $4, we'll manage some way."
"It isn't that," the young lady sobbed. "I can't find anybody who has change for a fifty."
ITS NOT THE HUMIDITY
The Finnish sauna bath, which dates back to prehistoric times, is beginning to boom in America. In California, where booms are usually biggest, the sauna is moving into the realm of the commonplace. Drivers at the Elwell Trucking Company take saunas after work. No California motel is worth its swimming pool without a sauna. In northern California the number of sauna baths taken each month has increased from 500 to 50,000 in three years.
Sauna is a dry-heat bath—so dry that the bather who wilts at 130° in a steam bath can sit or lie in a sauna at temperatures ranging up to 250° or more. Bathing can be private or communal; most saunas made and sold for home or institutional use average about seven feet square, which is room enough for three or four persons. The approved procedure is two 10-to-15-minute sessions, interrupted by a shower (or, in the Finnish tradition, a roll in the snow in the nude, where snow and neighbors permit), followed by another shower and a rest. Saunas are not weight reducers or curealls, but they are marvelously relaxing and, paradoxically, invigorating.
Prices start at $1,500 for a do-it-yourself kit that includes both the special dehumidifier/heater and the bathhouse. Most saunas are in clubs or institutions, but sales to individuals are climbing at such a pace that retail outlets are starting to feature saunas. Be the first in your neighborhood....
Rim Ditch is a 100-foot-wide flood-control canal near Stuart, Fla. Its brackish waters rarely offer more than an occasional largemouth bass or snook. Recently the ditch offered something much better: a huge tarpon, dubbed "The Thing" by one awed angler. The tarpon was for three months last fall the target of countless fishermen who flailed the waters of Rim Ditch with everything from live pinfish and strip mullet to bucktails, plugs and even homemade lures. The Thing ignored them all.
Then along came Ed Kulisek, a retired postal supervisor from Cleveland, plugging for snook with light spinning tackle and 15-pound test monofilament line. And what happened? Why, Kulisek accidentally snagged The Thing in the tail. A big tarpon so hooked would normally have to snap its powerful forked tail just once to break a line or throw a plug in a shower of spray. But somehow the hooks remained imbedded in The Thing's tail, and by applying constant pressure on the fish, Kulisek was able to prevent it from jumping. Even so, he fought it from the bank for half an hour and then clambered into a boat to continue the battle. When the tarpon finally was boated two hours later, Kulisek found he wasn't the first to foul hook it: another plug was stuck in the fish's dorsal fin.
The Thing weighed 180 pounds 12 ounces, a world record for 12-to 20-pound test line. But The Thing won't make the record book, not because it was caught by the tail, but because Kulisek's plug was equipped with treble hooks. The International Game Fish Association doesn't recognize catches made on more than one hook.
AN ADDED BURDEN
Horseplayers have a lot of things to figure, including the interest on their personal loans. Now, a new burden has been placed on generally feeble minds. The Morning Telegraph, the horseplayers' Koran, began as of the first of the year, when all racehorses automatically become a year older, a new system. Instead of telling you the age of the horse, the past performance chart now contains in parentheses the year of his birth. What with figuring whether a horse can go a distance or tires, whether he dislikes mud, slop or sunshine and whether he can carry weight, a horseplayer is a busy man. He needs all the help he can get, and he shouldn't be asked by his statistical friend to figure quickly that a horse born in 1954 is now 9 years old. That's too much weight for age.
New York cabdrivers are constantly being criticized for fleecing gullible passengers, sneering at small tips, growling at passengers and cops and other cabbies and generally doing what they can to keep the world an unpleasant place. But don't try to tell this to a New Yorker named—oh, let's call him Bill Jones. One night late in December, Jones carelessly left an envelope containing two treasured tickets to the Green Bay Packers-New York Giants playoff game in a cab. Scalpers were getting $50 to $100 a ticket, and when Jones discovered his loss he gnashed his teeth and accepted the fact that there would be at least one affluent cabbie in New York the next day. But when Jones went morosely to work in the morning, there on his desk was the envelope with the tickets. The cabbie had found the envelope, which had Jones's name on it, remembered where he had picked him up, went back to the building, asked the maintenance people if they knew where Bill Jones's office was and left the envelope on his desk.
THEY SAID IT
•A New Hampshire basketball fan after Davidson College routed his team 115-54: "Our biggest trouble is that we had a real poor season last year and most of our players returned."
•Y. A. Tittle, bald New York Giant, on slender, 175-pound Del Shofner: "If Del Shofner can tell how to build a body 12 ways in a bread commercial, I'm going to hire out to a hair tonic."
•Frank Gifford, on Green Bay Coach Vince Lombardi's devoted study of football films: "Why, he has 16-millimeter eyeballs."
•Alabama Coach Paul Bryant, after being called a "whip-cracking, narrow-minded tyrant" by a Miami newspaper when he arrived in that city for the Orange Bowl game: "These last two years at Alabama should have been my happiest. But if this is the price of success, I don't know whether it's worth it."