Clipped From Redlands Daily Facts
Gilliam, Beathard ink Chicago Winds pacts CHICAGO (UPI) - Wide receiver John Gilliam, who helped carry the Minnesota Vikings to the Super Bowl in each of the last two seasons, was under contract today with the fledgling Chicago Winds World Football League franchise. And so were two other offensive stars, perhaps the first indication that the winds of fortune are blowing in the right direction for the new club. The Winds announced at a news conference Wednesday that along with Gilliam, they had signed veteran NFL quarterback Pete Beathard, who played with the Portland Storm of the WFL at the end of last season, and fullback Mark Kellar, a leading rusher last year for Chicago's former WFL franchise, the Fire. The multi-million dollar Sports DAILY FACTS, Redlands, Calif. Thursday, June 19,1975- 8 Fivesome fires 15-under round to win at RCC Pro Dave Cink led his fivesome to a 15-under par win in the fourth annual Pro Scramble golf tournament at Redlands Country Club yesterday. A representative of the Lynx company, Cink was a member of the winning team which included RCC members Tom Alongi, Vernon Lee, Frank Goodie, and Bob French. Led by a hole-in-one by Julian Blakeley, a team of pro Norman Bernard of RCC, Larry Rice, Larry Thomas, Doug Cook and Blakeley finished second with a 14-under move gave the Winds 75 players on the roster heading into training camp, including about 10 former NFL players and about 20 former members of the Fire. It also gave the team the signs of a potent offensive attack— which has been notably absent in Chicago in recent years. Club President Gene Pullano, with the three players at his side at a news conference, described Gilliam as "one of the finest wide receivers ever to play football." The 29-year-old speedster set a club record for the Vikings in 1972 with 1,035 yards gained in 47 pass receptions. Last year, he played in 14 games and caught 26 passes for 578 yards although he often was double- covered and played the last few games with a cast on his broken wrist. "I'm in this game for money," Gilliam said of his jump to the WFL. He signed last year with the Hawaii franchise for the 1975 season and said "they met their obligations." But, he said, "I wanted to come back to the mainland, so they let me come to Chicago." He said his contract was for three years, but did not disclose the terms. He said the Vikings never made him a contract offer after he issued his demands. Gilliam was a teammate of Beathard's at St. Louis in the 1970-71 season and he praised the former Southern California star as "a great quarterback." Beathard, 33, spent 10 seasons in the AFL and NFL, including four years with Kansas City, before jumping to Portland last year. The Storm had won just one of its first 10 games when he joined the team, but he guided the club to seven wins in its last 10 games. He has completed 690-of-l,518 passes for 49 TDs in his career. Kellar, a former Northern Illinois star, averaged 4.1 yards in 189 carries for the Fire last year before he was injured.