Parlay of figure skating, boxing keeps surging Fox on a roll

Media Watch

February 23, 1996|By Milton Kent

Slowly but surely, like the little engine that could -- with a bin full of Rupert Murdoch's cash to stoke the fire -- Fox Sports continues to make its presence felt.

The first and biggest splash, of course, was grabbing the NFL away from CBS, but Fox, through hockey, and later this season, baseball, appears to be spreading its nets all about the athletic ocean, looking for good places to cast.

The network selects two solid, if seemingly incompatible sports, figure skating and boxing, for a prime time-late night doubleheader tomorrow night.

In the opener, Fox (Channel 45) presents the taped conclusion of its Skate International Champions competition from Paris (8 p.m.), as American skaters Michelle Kwan and Todd Eldredge compete against a group of international skaters for nearly $2 million in prize money.

The nightcap is a boxing card from the peculiar alliance Fox has formed with promoter Don King for Saturday night matches that have done fairly well in the ratings.

Tomorrow's bout pits "Terrible" Terry Norris, who holds belts from both the International Boxing Federation and the World Boxing Council, against Baltimore's Vincent Pettway from the Richmond (Va.) Coliseum at 11 p.m.

Olympic gold

NBC, the Olympic network, in case you hadn't heard, continues the long gear-up to Atlanta with a couple of Olympic-related shows tomorrow.

The first is the Mobil Indoor Invitational track meet from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. (Channel 11, 2 p.m.) with Gwen Torrance and Gail Devers among the American Olympic hopefuls expected to attend. Announcers Tom Hammond, Craig Masback, Dwight Stones and Carol Lewis, named this week as NBC's Olympic track telecast team, will do the honors tomorrow.

Immediately following the track meet (Channel 11, 3 p.m.) is "Stride to Glory," a one-hour special with host Greg Gumbel that examines the Olympic contributions of African-American athletes from George Poage, the first to win an Olympic medal in 1908, to Gaithersburg's Dominique Dawes, who is seeking a gymnastics gold medal.

Hardwood roundup

There are a number of intriguing matchups on the college and professional basketball fronts this weekend.

At noon tomorrow, Maryland tips off against Clemson in Death Valley (Channel 54), and unbeaten Massachusetts gets a stern test against George Washington (ESPN), which beat the Minutemen twice last season.

On Sunday, you'll be able to get in a half of Villanova-Connecticut (Channel 13, noon), before you have to decide whether to stay and watch a battle that could help determine NCAA tournament seedings or check out the Orlando-Chicago dust-up (Channel 11, 1 p.m.) on NBC.

Last season's area Player of the Year Chanel Wright (Western) leads her North Carolina team into a must-win game against Duke tonight (ESPN2, 7:30), and Kisha Ford, Player of the Year three seasons ago at Bryn Mawr, takes Georgia Tech into Clemson for a Sunday meeting (Home Team Sports, noon).

Spinning the dial

Art Modell, owner of the Team Formerly Known As the Browns, sits down with Josh Lewin of WBAL (1090) for a chat tonight at 6.

At 10 p.m., Maryland football coach Mark Duffner talks with Spiro Morekas and Mark Mussina on WWLG (1360 AM), on the topic of scholarship signees, not strategies for on-campus parking.

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