Reading time, two minutes: Must be something in the water down in College Park that causes all those Maryland coaches to have problems with rule books.Joe Krivak's admitted bad decision at a critical point in Saturday's 18-17 loss to Clemson here is just one of a series of coaching gaffes
* During last night's Orioles-Blue Jays game on the telly, Cal Ripken's average (.249) popped up on the screen and broadcasters Jon Miller and Joe Morgan got into a discussion about the shortstop's consecutive games streak affecting his performance. Miller said, "Cal says, 'No,'" to which Morgan replied, "What he's telling me then is he's a .250 hitter."
* Teams in the NFL are averaging less than 60 running and passing plays a game as a result of the new rules designed to chip several minutes off the running time of games. Meanwhile, college teams like Army, Pitt, Oklahoma, Brigham Young and Washington State were in the 80s this past weekend. So the pros should seriously consider a drop in their ticket prices, right?
* New York's finest just might have to write out a ticket or two at the Mercedes Mile down Fifth Avenue Saturday. Peter Elliot prepped for the event by turning in the fastest 1,500 meters ever run on English soil yesterday (3:32.7) and Steve Cram was a half stride behind. Also entered in the TV extravaganza are Said Aouita, Moses Kiptanui, Jim Spivey and Steve Scott.
* College football polls aren't as harmless as many insist when Texas A&M, Virginia, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Miami run up scores of anywhere from 52 to 63 points to maintain or better their positions in the weekly consensus.
* One thing about the seemingly endless game that saw Notre Dame beat Michigan, 28-24, Saturday night: A shower and shave and it was time for early mass.
* Not to panic, soccer buffs. If the Superdome in New Orleans lands World Cup games in 1994 as is expected, they won't be played on artificial turf. Regular grass can be sustained for about two weeks indoors.
* Springfield (Mass.) College kicked off its centennial season last week with a 39-16 win over Slippery Rock. The man who organized the first squad was legendary coach Amos Alonzo Stagg and it played Yale in the first indoor game ever at Madison Square Garden in New York. A halfback on the team was James Naismith, who, a year later, invented a game using a peach basket and a round ball.
* Tennis spats remind you of pro rassling sometimes. Several months ago, Andre Agassi was on and off the U.S. Davis Cup team in a matter of hours when captain Tom Gorman indicated the child star's huge entourage wasn't part of the deal. Andre said, "Gorman's not a leader. He wants to live in the glory of it all for a week and claim to be everyone's coach." Starting Friday, however, Agassi, Michael Chang and Co. are slight favorites to beat Austria in Vienna and advance to the cup final, and all is well in the locker room. "I just don't take any of these things personally," explained the coach.
* There are five Americans pitching in Japanese baseball and none of them has a winning record.
* The reason Tommy Hearns got rid of his astute manager Emanuel Steward wasn't only the money, but the latter's constant pleading with him to quit the ring. Hearns, a nice guy, is very thick of tongue these days and now he's hooking on with the promotional equivalent of Sodom and Gomorrah, Harold Smith and Dennis Rappoport.
* The last time the Atlanta Braves enjoyed a sellout was April 8, 1974, the night the man whose name appears first in the Baseball Encyclopedia swatted the home run, No. 715, that made everybody forget the guy who held the record previously.
* You can bet Georgia Tech hoops coach Bobby Cremins, who does an exceptional job mining New York talent, isn't overjoyed to see Florida State come into the Atlantic Coast Conference. Seminoles coach Pat Kennedy coached at Iona previously and knows every gym and playground from New Haven to Camden, N.J.
* Heck, forget about her coaching the U.S. women's basketball team in the '92 Olympics; I'd like to see Theresa Grentz of Rutgers handle the men's team.
* It turns out that Kareem Abdul-Jabbar commanded the top fee ($24) for his autograph at a big collector's show recently, beating out Jose Canseco by $2. Meanwhile, the once worthwhile kids' pastime is completely shot with J.C. Penney signing up 21 guys to sign baseballs it'll dispense through mail order at $40 per.
* The cities that lay claim to the two franchises the National League is handing out at a cost of $95 million could do far worse than giving Fidel Castro a blank check for use of the Cuban National team.
* And, thanks to Wayne Levi, Pat Fletcher's mark is safe for another year. Pat's the last Canadian to win the Canadian Open, and the year was 1954.