ABC obtains TV rights to '91 Pan Am GamesABC Sports has...

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December 04, 1990

ABC obtains TV rights to '91 Pan Am Games

ABC Sports has struck a deal with the U.S. Treasury Department, allowing the network to obtain exclusive rights to televise the 1991 Pan American Games from Havana to the United States.

The deal, announced yesterday by ABC, settles a six-month-old lawsuit in which a federal judge in New York upheld the Treasury Department's right to block the network from paying Cuba any rights fee for the games. At the time, ABC indicated it would appeal.

Originally, ABC was estimated to have offered the Cubans anywhere from $6.5 million to $8.7 million for U.S. rights to the Aug. 2-18 games.

ABC and the Cuban government reached an accord on a rights deal last year, but Treasury refused to license the broadcast, citing federal laws that restrict business between U.S. companies and Cuba. Last June 29, U.S. District Judge John Sprizzo upheld the government's right to do so.

* The U.S. Olympic Committee is urging that drug tests of athletes participating in the Pan American Games not be performed in Cuba.

The committee warned that the United States might not participate in the games because Cuba lacks a laboratory, equipment and trained technicians necessary to perform the tests.

College football

Gerry DiNardo, who is credited with developing top-ranked Colorado's I-Bone offense, was given a five-year contract yesterday as head football coach at Vanderbilt University.

DiNardo was introduced to the news media less than 18 hours after an emotional meeting between former head coach Watson Brown (10-45) and his players, who signed a petition denouncing Brown's dismissal. Brown was reassigned to a fund-raising post within the university. DiNardo, the offensive coordinator at Colorado, will not be at the team's Orange Bowl game against Notre Dame.

Boxing

The Maryland State Athletic Commission has rejected promoter Don Elbaum's bid to stage a 15-round super flyweight title fight between Louis Curtis of Washington and Mike Phelps of Beaumont, Texas, at the Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza in Rockville, Dec. 11. Championship bouts are limited to 12 rounds.

Elbaum will now top his boxing card with a 10-round cruiserweight rematch pitting Jerry Rash (7-4-1), of Elkton and Phil Gilberti (11-5), of Rockville. Rash stopped Gilberti in their first match last October.

Baltimore welterweight Eddie Van Kirk (21-6-1) will box Kato Wilson (12-11-2), of New York, in an eight-round bout. Tickets are

$50 and $25.

Golf

Webb Heintzelman of Bethesda failed to retain his PGA Tour player's card when he shot a closing-round 76 for a six-round total of 431, and finished tied for 71st in the final qualifying school at La Quinta, Calif. With the first 45 and ties earning cards for 1991, it took a score of 428 to make it. The others will be exempt players for the Hogan Tour. Duffy Waldorf led the qualifiers with a final 69 for 413, 19 under par. Among the qualifiers was University of Maryland graduate George Burns, 74-225, tied for 26th.

Drug testing

The German track and field federation will meet tomorrow in an emergency session to discuss growing allegations that athletes from both East and West Germany for years took performance-enhancing drugs.

Meanwhile, Raik Hannemann, a swimmer from East Germany who won a silver medal in the 200-meter medley at the 1989 European Championships, admitted yesterday that he took performance-enhancing drugs.

"We all took them [anabolic steroids]," Hannemann wrote in a bylined article in a Berlin newspaper.

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