Happy Salley Tailback Robert Smith, saying he questioned...


August 31, 1991

Happy Salley Tailback Robert Smith, saying he questioned the importance of playing football, ended a week of speculation yesterday by making final his decision to quit the Ohio State team.

Coach John Cooper, who did not attend the news conference, said he considered the matter finished.

Smith, who broke Archie Griffin's Ohio State freshman rushing record last year with 1,126 yards, quit the team Aug. 23, saying the coaching staff disregarded academics and player safety. He asked for the removal of Cooper and of assistant head coach and offensive coordinator Elliot Uzelac, formerly the Navy coach, saying that Uzelac told him on two occasions to miss class in order to attend practice.

Uzelac was admitted to a hospital with chest pains Friday and underwent an angioplasty for the second time in three months. He was released yesterday. Smith, who wants to attend medical school, apologized to Uzelac's family for the manner in which his comments were handled.


Mike Tyson went one round before a special grand jury investigating an accusation that the former heavyweight champion raped a beauty pageant contestant last month. Tyson had no comment either before or after his 3 1/2 -hour appearance in front of the the Marion County jury in Indianapolis.

Prosecutor Jeffrey Modisett said Tyson's appearance has suggested the need to call more witnesses, creating the likelihood the investigation will continue at least into next week.

* Larry Holmes has sued the promoters of his first comeback bout, saying they reneged on their agreement and have tried to interfere in his boxing career since.

* Jesse Benavides of Corpus Christi, Texas, successfully defended his World Boxing Organization junior featherweight title with a fifth-round technical knockout of Mexican challenger Fernando Ramos.

Pro basketball

Knorr Bologna of the Italian league dropped Micheal Ray Richardson, saying the former NBA all-star had breached his contract. Richardson, a 35-year-old guard banned from the NBA for repeated substance abuse, signed a contract extension with Knorr recently and was to begin his fourth season in Italy.


Bob Uecker, radio voice of the Brewers since 1971, returned nTC to the broadcasting booth for Milwaukee's game against the California Angels. Uecker, 56, underwent life-threatening surgery on an aneurysm of the abdominal aorta on July 19.


The University of Maryland Baltimore County will open the state's collegiate volleyball season today (10 a.m.) with a five-team round-robin program at the UMBC Fieldhouse. Joining the Retrievers for the two-day event will be East Tennessee State, George Mason, Liberty and West Virginia. UMBC returns five starters from a 23-15 team that won 16 of its past 21 matches.

* Virginia, with seven starters and 13 lettermen returning, is the preseason favorite to win the 1991 ACC men's soccer title, according to a poll of the leagues' seven head coaches.

The Cavaliers, an NCAA tournament quarterfinalist, received five first-place ballots. Clemson earned second place, followed by N.C. State, Duke, North Carolina, Wake Forest and Maryland.


A state district judge has refused to turn over Dallas Times Herald telephone records to former Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer in a libel lawsuit filed by former Times Herald reporter Jack Taylor. State District Judge Gary Hall ruled the records were privileged and not relevant.

In Switzer's book, "Bootlegger's Boy," Taylor is mentioned in a scheme to plant drugs on an Oklahoma football player, identified only as Big Red, after the 1988 Orange Bowl.


Sheila Dagucon of Gaithersburg posted an 80 to lead three qualifiers for the U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur championship at Willow Oaks Country Club in Richmond, Va. Connie Pifer of Hunt Valley Golf Club posted an 85 and became first alternate for the championship, scheduled for Scottsdale, Ariz., Sept. 21-26.

* Randy Mason of Hampton, Va., registered 76-11-65, and won the eighth Du Pont World Amateur handicap championship by two strokes at the Dunes Golf & Beach Club in Myrtle Beach, S.C. Kathy Barksdale of Tunkhannock, Pa., finished second, 81-14-67, and her 5-under-par net score was the lowest ever recorded by a woman in the championship round. Jack Roberts of Bowie wound up 85-10-75, and tied for 19th in the 41-player field of flight winners from the 72-hole tournament, which ended Thursday.

Horse racing

Jack DeFee, a prominent national and Louisiana figure in horse racing, died of an apparent heart attack after a heated meeting involving track officials, owners, trainers and jockeys at Louisiana Downs. He was 82.

DeFee collapsed after a meeting at which Pat Pope, racing director at the Bossier City track, announced that a 10 percent across-the-board purse reduction would go into effect for non-stakes races after Labor Day.

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