College football fans get their fill tomorrow

Phil Jackman

September 13, 1991|By Phil Jackman

The TV repairman:

The true fan can slip into a 14-hour college football coma tomorrow with Rutgers and Duke starting it off at noon on Channel 45 and a tape of the Maryland-Syracuse debacle running on Home Team Sports until about 2 a.m. Sunday. The network-cable mix includes Louisville-Ohio State, UCLA-Tennessee, Notre Dame-Michigan, Alabama-Florida and Penn State-Southern Cal. Don't forget to fill the dog's water bowl at some point.

Actually, it's a very versatile day tubeside with (1) CBS sending along the only meaningful game in baseball -- Braves vs. Dodgers at 3 p.m., (2) ABC going prime time (8 p.m.) with the World Gymnastics Championships, (3) Pan Pacific swimming on TBS (10:20 p.m.), (4) a Julio Cesar Chavez fight on Showtime (10 p.m.) -- his record is 75-0, and (5) NBC with a tape of the World Cycling Championships (3 p.m.)

* Fight fodder: TVKO's monthly presentation tonight (10) is a tripleheader with Meldrick Taylor vs. Ernie Chavez, Mark Breland vs. Jorge Vaca and a rematch of a tremendous bout (a draw) in March, Tony Lopez vs. Brian Mitchell over 12 rounds for the IBF junior-lightweight title.

Tomorrow night (10), Showtime has Chavez taking on LonniSmith and Julian Jackson trading bombs with Dennis Milton. Smith's a big underdog against Chavez, but says, "It'll be guerrilla warfare. I'll knock Chavez out because he's not taking me seriously." Chavez's counter: "Smith is a good promoter, not a good fighter. Let's hope he comes to fight and not be a coward and run away." Typical snappy pre-fight patter.

Mike Tyson is listed as one of the commentators, but he's been known to miss an appointment or two.

* Similar to the sudden socialization of Jimmy Connors, expect John McEnroe to become potty trained and join polite society as he no longer can beat a good player and scurries to stay in the limelight with a TV tennis job.

* Thumbs up to ESPN's new information guy on the "NFL GameDay" show, Chris Mortenson . . . to Mary Carillo (CBS) and her explanations why things are happening in a tennis match . . . to Will McDonough and Bob Costas and the way they extracted useful information from Bill Parcells on NBC's "NFL Live." . . .

To New Orleans place-kicker Morten Andersen for bootlegging the telecast of blacked-out Saints games for his Crescent City restaurant . . . to the pre-game "Manager's Report" on WBAL Radio. John Oates provides interesting talk without aid of a questionto get him going . . . to the NFL Films' feature on the unrequited San Francisco University football team (9-0) in 1951 . . . to USA Network, which deserved the 55 percent boost in Open tennis ratings.

* Now to the good stuff: Thumbs down to CBS for figuring it needed a typically-vacuous interview with Jim McMahon on its "NFL Live" show . . . to Michigan, which runs a $23 million athletic operation, for not taking its cheerleaders to the road opener in Boston . . . to NBC dialing up its old buddy and employee Bobby Beathard and droning on about the pluses and minuses of the San Diego Chargers. Who cares? . . . to John Madden for constantly reminding us what a heckuva guy and coach his boyhood pal John Robinson of the Rams is . . .

To Ken Levine and all those oft-told tales about his boyhood dream to announce baseball and his other career as a comedy writer in Hollywood . . . to Tony "See No Evil" Trabert (CBS) for saying things like, "This is just an observation, not a criticism" as he over-explains an obvious point of tennis.

To Joe Namath who, somehow, gets worse as a game analyst as the years roll by. Goodness gracious, Joe? . . . to Joe Walter of the Cincinnati Bengals: Hey, kid, don't you know that only Jimmy Connors can get away with obscene gestures? . . . to "The Today Show" for bypassing champion Stefan Edberg and having Connors as a guest the morning after the Open . . . to all the pro football pre-game shows that regard the condition of Joe Montana's throwing elbow with the sense of urgency reserved for a president suffering a heart attack . . . to the QVC Shopping Network for acting as if $40 for an autographed baseball isn't a first-class ripoff.

* Run, don't walk, to the nearest video store with a $20 bill in your hand and plunk it down for "Silver Celebration," a tape highlighting NFL Films' masterful coverage of pro football over the last quarter-century. It's a collector's treasure, as they say in the ads.

* Preliminary report on Aziz Abdur-Ra'oof, Maryland footbalcolorman on radio: Try about 15,000 cc's of adrenalin before going on.

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