Par alone won't cut it with aim-for-pin format

Phil Jackson

August 16, 1991|By Phil Jackson

The TV Repairman: The golf stop on CBS this weekend, the International, isn't your usual medal-play tournament, remember. Competitors get points for heroics (two for a birdie, five for an eagle), penalties for stumbles (minus one for a bogey, minus three for a double) with the top 72 qualifying after the first two rounds. The field for Sunday will be down to 24 golfers, starting from scratch. It's not as bad as it sounds, honest.

* Terry Norris (28-3) and Brett Lally (29-5) will be the guys duking it out on HBO tomorrow (10 p.m.) with the former's WBC super-welterweight title the prize. We should all be most thankful to Norris, because he's the guy who sent Sugar Ray Leonard into retirement this latest time.

* "The Champ," Sean O'Grady, had a big night Tuesdacommenting on the Larry Holmes-Eddie Gonzales snore on USA Network. "I'll say one thing," said Sean, "Eddie's got a lot of guts and most of them are hanging over his belt." The ex-fighter has an "Eagle vs. Turkey Theory," which states a good fighter taking on a lousy one always makes for a bad fight, but two stiffs opposing one another often makes for a good show. P.S. -- Holmes won all the rounds and performed capably except during a pre-fight interview.

* One of the feature bouts of SummerSlam on pay-per-view Aug. 26 is the matchup of Big Boss Man and The Mountie. The loser has agreed to spend a night in the New York City jail and if that isn't worth sending a camera along for, nothing is.

* CNN might do some business with its NFL Preview Show Sundays at 11:30 a.m. now that Buddy Ryan is taking over for Ken Stabler. "Snake" wasn't bad as a studio analyst, but irascible ol' Buddy figures as a definite step up with his ever-ready cheap shots. For instance, reviewing the quarterback situation of the Los Angeles Raiders, Buddy said the team should go with Steve Beuerlein "because [Jay] Schroeder can't play." Ryan rarely leaves you questioning where he stands.

* The Free TV Surcharge lobbyists in Washington are pushing for 20 percent to be added to your basic cable charge with the proceeds then being turned over to local commercial stations for the retransmission of their signal. In other words, a charge for free TV.

* Would somebody at NBC please arm Todd Christensen with a question when "Mr. Wonderful" (a self-description) goes forth to interview an athlete? "Three world records in one summer, can you top this?" he asked a somewhat bewildered sprinter Leroy Burrell.

* Speaking of bad interviews, what did WBAL have in mind dispatching Ken Levine to the field for a talk with no-hit Chicago pitcher Wilson Alvarez last Sunday? Clearly, Ken has problems trying to wrestle information out of his subjects.

* Hopefully, CBS plans to market a tape of John Madden doing a stroke analysis of John Daly's swing after the rookie won the PGA Championship last Sunday. It was one of the viewing delights of the summer, Madden, with telestrator, making fun of his golf colleagues and the way they preach a club should be swung.

* A worthy nominee for most stupid advertisement in televisiohistory is the Dominos Pizza epic where NFL quarterbacks keep bouncing footballs off the phone. Remember, kiddie see, kiddie do. Sue 'em, Ma Bell.

* Say what you want about ABC's college football studio duo of Roger Twibell and Bo Schembechler, but you can bet they won't miss a cliche, a hackneyed expression, bromide or otherwise dull and predictable utterance come Saturday afternoons.

* A Ken Venturism is golf's equivalent of a Jerry Colemanism and Ralph Kinerism in baseball. Entry No. 1: "This shot, unless you're down there, is really dictated by the lie."

* With the airwaves so cluttered with pro football this weekend, why don't they just halt all this exhibition foolishness and tee it up for real? After the Browns and Redskins tonight at 8 on Channel 5, there's the Bills and Packers tomorrow at 1 p.m. (CBS) and the Jets and Giants at 8 p.m. (ESPN). Sunday, it's the Cowboys and Oilers at 8 p.m. (TNT), then it's the Dolphins and Broncos at 8 p.m. Monday (ABC).

* Just eight more days until the baseball game of the month by LTC CBS: It will be the Reds at the Mets or Twins right out here on 33rd Street against the Orioles Aug. 24.

* Fred Edelstein told USA Today that St. Louis selling out a preseason game last weekend helped its chances of getting an NFL expansion franchise in 1994. Knowing Fred's credibility when it comes to predictions and exercising logic, the Mound City might as well toss in the towel.

* Years ago, Channel 2 sent a camerawoman out to shoot an Orioles game and, for three hours, she turned off the camera as soon as the pitcher threw the ball plateward. Almost as bad is the Channel 11 cameraperson who shot a softball tournament through a backstop fence last weekend. One of my eyes still hasn't uncrossed.

* Good line from Al Michaels regarding the less-than-successful steed Barraq he half owns: "If he doesn't run any better, he will be sent to the pony rides and the owners will be gelded."

* HBO is preparing a History of Sports Television show for November. Fortunately, it will be in two parts, so it doesn't figure to miss anything.

* ABC says a 3.3 rating for the Pan Am Games is just fine, which tests credulity considering beach volleyball did a 3.4 on NBC.

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