NFL murmurings abound in state government circles

September 02, 1994|By JOHN STEADMAN

NOTEworthy Day:

From high places in state government we hear two things are pending -- an effort by Mike Miller, senate president, to rescind the legislation for a football stadium in Baltimore and also a possible antitrust suit against Jack Kent Cooke and the Washington Redskins if it can be proven they're blocking the city from getting an NFL franchise.

* Good news for golfers is that Police Commissioner Thomas Frazier has increased security at public courses, where hoodlums pulled two holdups that set off an epidemic of three-putt greens. . . . Western Maryland College's gift to the first Colts' team, center Mike Phillips, died in Richmond, Va. . . . Jim Speros asked Jeff Rimer to continue announcing CFL games on HTS, even after he makes the move to Miami.

* For the next month, Frank Cashen, retired Orioles and Mets general manager, will be vacationing at Bethany Beach and, naturally, perfecting his sand shots. . . . Add the name Stan White to the list of possible Towson State athletic directors. . . . If there's a better steamed crab in all of Baltimore than what Frank Sliwka, who heads the annual Tops in Sports banquet, serves at Renee's, we haven't tasted it. . . . Friends of Charley Eckman and Paul Hoffman are boosting both for the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass.

* Check the sidelines of the Shreveport Pirates, when they're playing the Baltimore CFLs, and you'll see the familiar face of Francis "Cotton" Davidson, once a Colts first-round draft choice and a QB with a rifle for an arm, who is an assistant coach. . . . Of the rock bands we've heard, our vote for name originality goes to "Buck Naked and the Bare Bottoms," an outfit that used to work out of St. Louis.

* More evidence of the kind of thoughtful man Don Larsen (he of perfect game fame) is came on his last visit to Baltimore when he made a special trip to the Jessup produce facility to finally meet Justin Vitrano, a man he didn't know but talked to on the phone for more than 20 years, when he was working for a California packaging company.

* Baltimorean Tommy Byrne, the ex-Yankee, and Eddie Robinson, an Orioles player and then a coach, will be playing in next month's Mickey Mantle golf tournament in Oklahoma. . . . We secretly hoped WBAL would stay in-house and persuade Gerry Sandusky to leave the TV side for talk radio because of his vast knowledge of the games, excellent articulation and sense of humor -- which is not taking anything away from Jeff Rimer's replacement, Josh Lewin, who deserves the chance to get off to a good start.

* Fifty years ago, the Legion Gaels were the best American Legion baseball team in the city, state and Middle Atlantic area (they bowed out in Brockton, Mass.) and within the last few months two of the players, Roger Burns and Charley Maggio, died suddenly.

* Now it's being said Babe Ruth would have had another 50 home runs if the old rule of a ball leaving the park and turning foul, which meant it didn't count, had not been in vogue during 10 years of his career. . . . The Orioles failed to have a representative at the funeral of trainer Eddie Weidner, who gave the team devoted service for 52 years; the only baseball representatives present were former PR director Bob Brown and pitcher Lou Sleater.

* The death of Bernie James, former major-league infielder, brings to mind the most punch-filled baseball fight we ever witnessed, in old Oriole Park, when Cliff Melton exchanged blows with the Rochester Red Wings, bringing out a sizable detachment of police to quiet the uprising. . . . If Larry Lucchino is able to buy the San Diego Padres, it gives Washington/Northern Virginia a well-deserved chance in the years ahead to get a National League team, via transfer. . . . Jack Mildren, running in Oklahoma, may become the second ex-Colt (Ed King of Massachusetts was the first) to become governor of a state. . . Jim Palmer and Tom Matte have charity golf tournaments scheduled Sept. 8 at Turf Valley and Sept. 12 at Chestnut Ridge.

* See where John Elway mentioned exhibition games are a waste of time, which is what two former coaches, Vince Lombardi and Joe Schmidt, likewise insisted. . . . Because of the bad-taste comments of Gary McCord on CBS at the Masters tournament, the host Augusta National Club is to be applauded for putting his name on the cut list. . . . Frank Gifford continues to say fellow Hall of Famer Lenny Moore, with football in hand, was one of the most dangerous players he ever saw -- which brings a chorus of "amen" from the Baltimore constituency.

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