Soviets expect to do well at OlympicsThe top Soviet...

Sports briefly

June 25, 1991

Soviets expect to do well at Olympics

The top Soviet Olympic official yesterday dismissed fears that the Soviet sports machine is bankrupt and losing athletes in a "brawn drain" to the West, and predicted his athletes would dominate the Winter and the Summer Games next year.

"I have no doubts that in both Albertville and Barcelona we will be the favorites to win the most Olympic medals," Vitaly Smirnov, president of the Soviet National Olympic Committee, said. "But the struggle will be tough."

The Winter Games will be held in Albertville, France. The Summer Games will be in Barcelona, Spain.

Smirnov said the economic and political upheaval in the country had created problems for coaches and athletes, reducing money for training, travel, medicine and even food.

"Unfortunately, we are living through a very painful transition period, when we are saying goodbye to all the old structures. . . . And we have not yet adopted the practices of a free society," he said.

Pro football

Herschel Walker agreed to a one-year contract with the Minnesota Vikings, ending months of sometimes acrimonious negotiations.

Vikings vice president Jeff Diamond, who negotiated the deal, would not say how much the former All-Pro running back will be paid. Neither Walker nor his Cleveland-based agent, Peter Johnson, could be reached for comment.

Walker was acquired from the Cowboys on Oct. 12, 1989, for eight high draft choices and five players. Because of the deal, the Vikings have had no first- or second-round draft picks in 1990 and 1991 and won't have picks in the first three rounds next year. They are 13-14 since the trade.

Basketball

Dikembe Mutombo, the 7-foot-2 Georgetown center, has roared into the Sacramento Kings' plans, as they prepare for the NBA college draft tomorrow. Player personnel director Jerry Reynolds said the team would consider drafting Mutombo rather than Syracuse forward Billy Owens if its first choice, Kenny Anderson, isn't available.

The Kings hold the No. 3 pick in the draft, after the Charlotte Hornets and New Jersey Nets. Charlotte is expected to take Nevada-Las Vegas forward Larry Johnson. The Nets are divided between Owens and Anderson, a sophomore point guard from Georgia Tech.

"The only thing that's changed from our standpoint is I think we've got to strongly consider Mutombo along with the other three," Reynolds said.

* Vlade Divac fueled an early second-half surge by Yugoslavia to lead the defending champions to a 76-67 victory over Spain in the first round of the European Basketball Championships in Rome.

Divac, who helped the Los Angeles Lakers to the NBA Finals, had eight points, three rebounds and two steals in the game and they all came in the first 10 minutes of the second half as Yugoslavia opened a 20-point lead.

In other opening-day games, Poland defeated Bulgaria, 83-75, France upended Czechoslovakia, 104-80, and Italy defeated Greece, 82-72.

Wrestling

A suburban Harrisburg, Pa., doctor acted as a drug dealer, not a physician, when he sold anabolic steroids and other controlled substances to professional wrestlers and weight lifters from around the country, a federal prosecutor said.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Theodore Smith III made the allegation as he outlined the government's case against Dr. George Zahorian III during opening arguments in a trial serving as a test case of a 1988 law passed by Congress that outlawed distributing steroids for non-medical reasons.

Autos

Porsche, which built engines that won three consecutivFormula One championships for the McLaren team in the 1980s, will be out of the sport until the fall to conduct further tests on its troubled motors.

"We are not pulling out of Formula One, but we are increasing our efforts to make the car as competitive as soon as possible," Manfred Jantke, spokesman for the German maker of luxury sports cars, said yesterday.

Colleges

Former University of Miami academic counselor Tony Russell, the focus of federal investigations of financial-aid fraud at UM, was declared indigent and had a lawyer appointed for him during a closed hearing in U.S. District Court in Miami.

Russell has admitted falsifying hundreds of financial-aid documents in order to get athletes -- at UM and elsewhere -- government grants to which they weren't entitled. He faces possible conspiracy and fraud charges.

Golf

Allen Doyle, who missed the 1989 Walker Cup because of bad back, will get another chance to play for the United States against Great Britain. Doyle will join 1990 U.S. Amateur champion Phil Mickelson and three other standout amateur golfers on the American team that will play in the 1991 Walker Cup in September near Dublin, Ireland.

Others named to the team along with Mickelson, a two-time NCAA champion and only one of three amateurs ever to win an event on the PGA Tour, and Doyle are David Duval, an All-American from Georgia Tech; two-time U.S. Amateur winner Jay Sigel; and David Eger, a PGA Tour official.

The rest of the 10-man team will be chosen after the 1991 U.S. Amateur, which will be played Aug. 20-25 at The Honors Course outside Chattanooga, Tenn.

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