Watson charges bias, resigns from golf club
Golfer Tom Watson resigned from the Kansas City (Mo.) Country Club after businessman Henry Bloch was reportedly denied admission to the club because he is Jewish, it was reported yesterday.
"They put a prominent Jewish person up for membership, and his application was withdrawn," Watson said. "It's something I can't personally live with because my family is Jewish."
Watson is not Jewish, but his wife, Linda, and their two children are.
The five-time winner of the British Open and two-time winner of the U.S. Open became a junior member of the club when he was 21 and has been a full-time member for the past six years.
Bloch, chairman and co-founder of H&R Bloch Inc., was turned down for application despite being sponsored at the club by three of the city's leading civic and business leaders, including Donald Hall, chairman of Hallmark Cards Inc. All three belong to the club's membership committee.
A federal grand jury returned a superseding indictment charging Howard Spira with making threats to extort money from former New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner and others. The original indictment was handed up last March in Tampa, Fla., where Steinbrenner is chief executive officer of American Shipbuilding Co. Inc. According to the 11-count superseding document, Spira allegedly used the telephone and mail to threaten and extort money from Steinbrenner and Earle Lilly, a Houston attorney. Spira, if convicted on all counts, could face up to 34 years in prison and $2 million in fines.
* Charles Bronfman, majority owner of the Montreal Expos, said he has a tentative deal to sell the club to a group of Canadian investors who will keep the team in Montreal. Bronfman, who put the team up for sale nearly a year ago, would not disclose the price or buyers, but he said the group -- headed by Expos president Claude Brochu -- included only Canadian and Quebec investors. The team is estimated to be worth $85 million in U.S. money.
* San Francisco Giants shortstop Jose Uribe was free on bail after he was charged with assaulting two Mexican women with a baseball bat in the Dominican Republic. Uribe was released after posting $26,000 bail. He has denied the charges.
Track and field
Ben Johnson is set to race against archrival Carl Lewis and Leroy Burrell, the fastest man in the world this year, in a 100-meters showdown among the world's top three sprinters Aug. 5 in Malmo, Sweden, meet director Bengt Bendeus said. Bendeus said Johnson has signed and world-record holder Lewis and Burrell had agreed to participate.
United States Boxing Association super flyweight champion Johnny Tapia (21-0-1) tested positive for cocaine nearly three weeks after his Oct. 26 title fight but was not tested as required immediately after the bout, according to the International Boxing Federation, the USBA's parent organization. The IBF has asked the three-member New Mexico Athletic Commission for a report on the circumstances after the Albuquerque fight against Santiago Caballero.
* Tyron Trice of Atlanta stopped Rafael Williams of Panama at 2 minutes, 40 seconds of the sixth round of their scheduled 12-rounder in New York to win the junior middleweight title of the newly formed International Boxing Conference.
East Carolina University chancellor Richard Eakin called the action of Mike Steele "reprehensible" after the basketball coach's arrest on a charge of driving while impaired. Eakin said he has left any disciplinary action against Steele to the discretion athletic director Dave Hart. Steele's blood-alcohol level registered .15; a person is considered legally drunk in North Carolina at .10.
Contrary to earlier reports, Chicago Bears center Jay Hilgenberg, a five-time Pro Bowl selection, won't have to undergo season-ending right elbow surgery. Hilgenberg practiced yesterday, and his status was upgraded from doubtful to probable for Sunday's home game against the Detroit Lions.
* Montgomery College-Rockville (10-0), ranked No. 2 among National Junior College Athletic Association football teams, will play No. 1 Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College (11-0) in the Mid-American Bowl Sunday at 1 p.m. in Tulsa, Okla., for the NJCAA championship.
Bits and pieces
Tickets are available for a testimonial honoring Nick "Coach" Wischuck today at the Knights of Columbus Hall on Eilers Road in Dundalk from 6-9 p.m. Call 284-4929 or 284-4028. . . . Overlea won the under-10 Baltimore County soccer championship by defeating Edreco, 6-0, in the semifinals and Gray Charles, 2-0, in the championship game. Mike Lynch and Rob Callinan scored in the title game. . . . A charity basketball game between P.J.'s All-Stars (featuring Eric Smith, formerly of Georgetown, and Wayne Wilson, formerly of the New Orleans Saints) and a team from Channel 11, will be played tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. at Howard Community College. Tickets for the game, which benefits the HCC endowment fund, cost $2 for adults and $1 for children.