DOUBLE SUB TROUBLE
By midseason it has become apparent that this year's NCAA football substitution rules, so confusing that neither coaches nor officials can understand or enforce them, are being pretty much disregarded in some areas. Still, it was a shocker the other night when Cliff Shaw, No 1 football referee of the Southwest Conference, blandly told a television audience: "A few ineligible players aren't going to hurt, anyone. At least they shouldn't change the outcome of a game."
The rules, said another Southwest official, are being "grossly violated. We are told in our pregame conferences that we are not to let the sub rules keep us from working a good football game."
Shaw said the trouble comes on fourth down and when the ball changes hands, occasions when only two substitutes are permitted.
"These are the busiest downs for the officials," he explained. "We can't risk a mistake on marking the ball and carrying out other duties by keeping a constant watch on the benches. I doubt that there has been one game played in our league in which there hasn't been at least one violation."
There will be more. Officials are resistant to proposals that, for the rest of the season, substitutes be required to report and be recorded on two-man substitution downs. Like the coaches, they are playing out the string—and pining for the free-substitution amendment that is likely to come in 1964.
POOL HALL IN THE SKY
In thoughtful concern for the city man's physical fitness we have sometimes pondered the feasibility of converting the rooftops of our space-starved cities into playing fields by sodding and lime-lining them. With the question still unresolved, we have put it aside to consider another puzzler, one that has to do not so much with space problems in recreation as recreation problems in space. In the weightlessness of out there, chin ups would have no effect. So what to do for those men soon expected to inhabit space stations circling the earth?
The solution is to use weightlessness instead of fighting it. As a recent Scientific American points out, the game of pool would adapt splendidly to three-dimensional play. Set up a rectangular room. Cover walls, ceiling and floor with green felt and have cushions run around the edges where floor meets wall and wall meets ceiling. Have your pockets in each of the eight corners. The balls, numbered from 1 to 35, would be racked in a tetrahedron (a four-sided pyramid) instead of a triangle. What with all the bending that is required in pool and climbing those walls and walking on the ceiling, the spacemen would get plenty of exercise.
CHALLENGE FOR THE CHAMP
If we owned an Offenhauser racing car we would be extremely nervous about two occurrences of last week.
First, the Ford Motor Company and British Designer Colin Chapman, collaborators on the Lotus-Fords which in last May's Indianapolis "500" made the dominant Offies look pretty vincible, disclosed an alarming new model at Indy. Instead of the original carbureted pushrod V-8 of 350 horsepower, it uses a four-overhead-camshaft, fuel-injected engine—again in lightweight aluminum and again burning gasoline rather than racing alcohol. Horsepower estimates range up to 450. The chassis is basically the old one, but Chapman has promised an improved design for 1964. With Jim Clark and Dan Gurney driving, and the engine developing typical new-engine bugs, the test car yet managed a very fast 149 mph. If it is that fast when sick, what wonders will the car perform when the engine is healthy?
The other threat to the Offy faithful came from Sherwood Egbert, president of Studebaker. "We will run at Indianapolis," he announced, "and we intend to win." Egbert, a fan of the hairy Novi supercharged engines that have long excited "500" fans but have never been in a winning car, plans to bestow them upon three different chassis: a four-wheel-drive Ferguson from England, a California-built job of unspecified design and a 1963 Indy model.
The brilliance of the 1963 Los Angeles Dodgers, goats of the 1962 pennant race, was explained last week by their manager, Walter Alston. "Last year," he told a Columbus audience, "we scored 202 runs more than this year.... Last year we had a guy [Wills] steal 104 bases and this year he only stole 40...and last year we won 102 games and this year we won only 99."
A LONG LINE
Fish stories from Texas are, naturally, fishier than any others. Like this one. A fisherman we shall call Joe hooked into a fat catfish just off the Gulf shore. But the canny catfish hung in an old car body, one of many heaps dumped into the Gulf to provide a haven for marine life. Joe was determined to reel in his catch, so he called on a skin diver armed with a spear gun to go down and dislodge the catfish. Skin diver obliged. He returned empty-handed. "Couldn't hit him?" Joe asked. "No," replied the diver. "Every time I started to get a bead on him, he'd roll the window up."
HOTEL FOR HACKERS
A chubby, cheerful little Canadian, Douglas Henderson, who recently opened a heated golf driving range in London, is a fellow of unlimited imagination. At Southport in Lancashire, where the British Open and Ryder Cup matches will be played in 1965, Henderson plans to build a 112-room hotel alongside a driving range, a swimming pool and a nine-hole par-3 golf course. Each bedroom will be carpeted with stuff that forms in effect a miniature putting green. There will be a hole installed at one end of the room and putting irons will be part of each room's furnishings. But that is by no means all. The lower a golfer's handicap, the less he'll have to pay for his room.
MATCH OF THE CENTURY
Only a few times in American history have Congressmen resorted to bare knuckles instead of full-blown platitudes, and rarely have actual blows been struck. Recently two Texans came close, one in Republican trunks, the other in Democratic.
Ed Foreman (Rep.), of Odessa, 29, 5 feet 11, weighing 215, took on Henry Gonzalez (Dem.), of San Antonio, 47, 5 feet 10, weighing 175. Foreman had played football for eight years in high school and college; Gonzalez did some college boxing.
Foreman was quoted as saying Gonzalez was soft on Communism. Gonzalez threatened to pistol-whip Foreman, who invited him to step outside. Gonzalez says that when they got outside Foreman put on his eyeglasses and refused to take them off. "He's a sissy," Gonzalez charged. Foreman denied the eyeglass claim, and said Gonzalez took a poke at him. Gonzalez said if he had, there would have been plenty of evidence on Foreman's face, which there was not
"I'd be perfectly happy to meet him in Madison Square Garden," said Gonzalez. "The ticket money could go to the parties' national committees, and the first man down loses."
The Garden matchmaker, Teddy Brenner, could do worse, and has.
Orville Baker, a Salt Lake City pheasant hunter, bought a $25 Idaho nonresident license and headed for Cache Valley, rich, rolling uplands that bestride the Idaho-Utah border. But he never fired a shot. Instead of pheasants he encountered a beady-eyed Idahoan toting a holstered six-gun in militant Old West style.
"No Utah folks allowed to hunt here," said the pistoleer.
"But I paid my $25 fee," protested Baker.
"No Utahns allowed," the man repeated, and this time Baker got the message. Hightailing it back across the state line, he raised the first alarm in a border war that now has the two states involved right up to their governors.
Utah law requires state registration—and accompanying taxes—of all vehicles operating within the state. This means that Idaho sugar beet farmers who transport their harvests to a mill only two miles inside Utah must register their trucks in Utah—in addition to paying for their own Idaho registration, of course. Others who work or study in Utah but live in Idaho are similarly affected. All would be well if Utah would change the law, but so far Utah won't. So, in reprisal, Idaho is letting Utah hunters buy nonresident licenses but not letting them hunt. Both states, from sheriff to governor, are now conducting conferences on how to effect a truce. There will be a grand final summit meeting on Nov. 12. Meanwhile, Idaho hunters are shooting pheasants and Idaho haulers are trucking on down.
It is Christmas catalog time and this year the gift listings are better reading than ever. At Saks Fifth Avenue, New York, there are buffalo coats for women. A few blocks away, at Brooks Brothers, there are buffalo busbys for men. (Busbys are those tall fur hats worn by hussars.) Saks also has a putter equipped with klaxon horn to annoy one's opponent at crucial moments, an electric light for late hole-outs, a tape measure, a level on the blade—and a compass. An irresistible combination, it goes for $25.
THEY SAID IT
•Warren LeTarte, representative of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues, on the minors: "We sat for too many years calling ourselves the great American game, playing the national anthem and thinking baseball was part of the Constitution. We must recognize that baseball is just another entertainment medium among many."
•Lord Mancroft on cricket: "The British have never been a spiritually minded people, so they invented cricket to give them some notion of eternity."
•Gerry Musial, 18-year-old daughter of Stan Musial, in a wire to her father at a testimonial dinner in his honor: "Dear Daddy, although you're retired, you still swing."