Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan on August 30, 1979 · Page 11
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Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan · Page 11

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Detroit, Michigan
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Thursday, August 30, 1979
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Page 11
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the j n scat- U. ) J I sVOis i. 1 " ------- I - SPORTS PEOPLE 2 ' HORSE RACING C j j j ENTERTAINMENT O-IO Ij j COMICS 11-13 Lx -.a ,- W i. - The case of the Red Wing draft choice who pleaded guilty to assault for fighting on the ice last season has been decided. The verdict appears on page 3 1 I It ! I 1 For the latest sports scores and results. J DETROIT FREE PRESS iat a relief! Miller plans Tiger return By BRIAN BRAGG Free Press Sport Writer John Hiller will be back in a Tiger uniform for spring training next year. The veteran lefthander, who will remain on the HtsnhiPd list for the rest of this season, confirmed Wednesday that he has already signed a contract for 1980. hiiw naid a final visit to the Tigers clubhouse to say goodbye to his teammates and gather his belong ings from the cumcie ne nas occupiea wi so many summers. He and hjs wife and their three children will leave for their home in Duluth on Thursday. Hiller's plans for the winter mciuae a program 01 weightlifting and swimming to rejuvenate the dam- him on Monday. He'll also work out indoors with some members of the University of Minnesota-Duluth baseball team, as he did last winter. "The status that I'm in right now is that I'm going to go to spring training and I've got to make the club," Hiller declared. "I'm not going to hold 'em to the contract if I can't make the club. "I told (general manager Jim Campbell) if I can't make this club In spring training I won't collect a , salary. I just wouldn't feel right sitting around the whole year and collecting a salary. "AND I WONT GO AROUND looking for a job with some other team, either. If I can't pitch for this team I wouldn't want to play for anyone else." Going to spring training and having to fight for a Hiller conceded. For many seasons he has been the mainstay of the Tigers' bullpen, and has been allowed to work himself into shape at his own pace, knowing he was sure of a spot on the 25-man roster when the regular season began. "The years that I've had good springs, though, have been the years that I played winter ball or worked out," he pointed out. "It's the years when I sat on my butt all winter that I haven't had good spring trainings." Hiller thinks he set the stage for his current shoulder trouble by "messing around trying to throw a screwball" in New York back in mid-May. The orthopedics specialist who examined him on Monday, Dr. Henry Sprague, thinks the veteran reliever may have bruised one of the delicate inner areas of the shoulder. "He thinks that three weeks to a month of rest should take care of it," said Hiller. "And he recommended getting on a swimming program to stretch those muscles out, so I plan to do that. "I'll probably start working out about November. The only time I ever messed with weights was after my heart attack (which caused Hiller to miss the 1971 season), and I've got a program of that I can do. "I'M JUST GOING TO GET myself in shape and go down there and try to make the club." Hiller's shoulder has bothered him for quite some time. Although he downplayed the pain that was associated with his injury, he found that his pitching ability was curtailed unless he had a long rest between outings. See HILLER, Page7D 1 ? 1 " John Hiller: "If I can't pitch for this team I wouldn't want to play for anyone else." a"" p i Gssiqo 1 1 Piiscas f wrrctwrusEME I urn fjmfljsoss,,, j Winning football is no big deal for card-players From time to time, It becomes necessary to put football In perspective, which is as follows ... When push comes to shove, an awful lot of sportsmen don't care from here to here how many games the Lions win this fall. Nice try, though, Gary. Or Michigan and Michigan State, either. It Is a terrible thought, I know, to lay upon anxious alumni who already have arranged their stadium picnics and winter bowl trips. And surely it is not the encouraging word expected in the households of Clark-Schembechler-Rogers, or even the padded dorms which house the weekend warriors. They do it for bettor or worse Football has two distinct groups of followers, each thriving and dying from week-to-week in its own way. Maybe you know that. All around now we see magazines and newspapers loaded with the latest football statistics, evaluations and casualties. You notice how the town has mourned all week over the untimely injury to the Lion quarterback, how Michigan and Michigan State still search for a quarterback. Hundreds of thousands could care less. I hate to tell you that, but it Is true. "If they win okay, if they lose, that's okay, too," says our ol' pal Dominic. "I'd rather see 'em win because they're our guys, but winning isn't everything no matter what Lombard! said. "The only thing that counts is how much they win by and how much they lose by. The point spread, man. The points is the thing." So now you know what the football season really means. During the weekends immediately ahead, we might have 265,000 live spectators at Ann Arbor, Lansing or Pontiac. But there will be millions more outside wringing their hands. We are headed into the biggest gambling period of the year. That's what football Is all about to guys like Dominic. Until Charley Harrison cooked up the Michigan state lottery, no scheme dipped into as many pockets as the weekly football parlay cards - including the old policy r&cRct I've seen priests play the football cards, and a mother put one before her pre-schooler, hoping the darling would circle the right combination of numbers. The dandiest oddsmaker I've found was not Jimmy the Greek but a kid who made the line on the north suburb high school games during the incredible season out Birmingham way last fall. The kid had talent and maybe a great future in the game. - Several years ago we did a bit with a cop out of Detroit's vice squad. He had watched the football parlay card racket swell into a multi-million dollar industry during the last 30 years. t He knew there was no way to combat it. Early every fall he and his gonzos will knock over a basement printing press and haul in a half-dozen card hustlers, but it's only a gesture. - "What are you gonna do?" he said. "The biggest betting day In the country is the day the Super Bowl is played, but for months before that every office, bar, restaurant or factory has cards or knows the point spread on all the games." He had resolved that football gambling was not such an awful vice because the Legislature was considering issuing its own football parlay card as an offshoot of the lottery. Well, here we are with the first meaningful football games coming up this weekend and there is no parlay card in sight. That's why we sought out Dominic. He thinks the Oilers are slick If you recall.'he is the world's best player. Except for that, he might be typical. He does not know a huddle from the T-formation, nor does he want to be confused by vagaries. Knowing nothing, he still hits the cards hard and beats the breath out of any bookie who will handle him. I have no idea how he does it, but I do know he had the late Curly, who used to handle action for reporters and FBI agents downtown, begging Dominic to take his play to another store. "This week's card is not worth bothering," says Dominic. "The college season is still a week away, so the card can only offer the 14 pro games. They've filled in with baseball, but I never bet baseball." So his pals will know, his hot team for the coming season Is the Houston Oilers. Watch Houston, he says. Favorite or underdog, Houston will cover the spread because it has an Italian quarterback. I figured Houston would be tough because Earl Campbell is football's best runner, but then, Earl's mother didn't come from Salerno. Dan Pastorini's did, which is why he's a super quarterback. If you're anxious for action, there's this to remember: In pro football last season, nearly half the games were decided by seven points or less, nearly a quarter of them were decided by three points or less, visiting teams won 40 percent of the time and scoring averaged 36.7 points a Keep those numbers in mind and maybe you can get rich, too. Devine 's Irish eyes are smiling Notre Dame is rated by the experts as one of the top ten college football teams in the nation. Today, Free Press sports writer Charlie Vincent takes a look at the Fighting Irish as part of his college football preview. SOUTH BEND, Ind. Some things never change. There stood Dan Devine, pacing back and forth on the small stage in Notre Dame's Athletic and Convoca-, tion Center, trying to explain for the thousandth time that he is not being forced out of his job. "Everybody's asking me what I'm going to do . . . I'm going to follow these freshmen right through for the next four years," Devine said, attempting to resolve the issue for at least that length of time. "I'm all through making declarations. The nature of the Notre Dame job is that you can't say too much, but once in a while I say too much. The 1 979 team is more Important than Dan Devine ... I intend to follow this freshman class through Notre Dame and you can read into that whatever you want to. "I'm happy at Notre Dame, I've said that 1,000 times, I'm not going to say it again." DEVINE IS BEGINNING his fifth season as the Irish's head coach and during that time Notre Dame has won 34 of 44 regular-season games and three straight bowls. Nevertheless, the question of De-vine's Job security seems a never ending subject of conversation. And faced with the September schedule that has the Irish meeting Michigan and Purdue on the road before their home opener against Michigan State, Sept. 29, it seems fair to assume the wolves are already laying in wait. i'fJ Charlie Uinccnt ;f , college football Illustration by Free Press Art Director DICK MAYER Michigan, Purdue and MSU are all assigned pre-season spots among the top 10 collegiate teams in the nation. And Devine is convinced all three would rather beat his team than beat each other in the Big Ten race. "Despite what Michigan, Michigan State and Purdue say. . .I'd have my suspicions if beating each other is really more Important than beating Notre Dame," he Insists. With that belief firmly entrenched In his mind, Devine is fully aware that his team is going to have to improve on last season's start, when it lost to Missouri and Michigan before getting its first victory. "Last year we may have talked too much and not worked hard enough," See NOTRE DAME, Page 5D anson ties icard in state PGA By JACK SAYLOR Free Press Sports Writer DAVISON The weather returned to normal for the Michigan PGA championship Wednesday wet, that is but it didn't rain on Lynn Janson's parade. The 31-year-old pro from Green Ridge CC in Grand Rapids sat out an hour delay in his tee-off, fought off a case of nerves and a late rush by Jim Picard to complete a slam of Michigan's major golf titles by winning the PGA title with a 54-hole score of 205, 11 under par. Janson finished his three-day log of 67-69-69 over the soggy 6,863-yard Davison CC course, then claimed the trophy as Picard, the Classy Cajun from Lochmoor, three-putted the final hole for a 71 and 206. "I feel sorry for him," said Janson, who earned the first-place check of $2,200 out of the $17,000 kitty. "It's a tough way to lose. "But it's a very satisfying win for me. It's important for any PGA member. It's our section's premier tournament. I still think Randy Erskine is the best player in the state and it was satisfying for me to beat him nothing personal and, really, satisfying IU Will ill una zvuiu vi a . Ianei "I think Michigan is probably one of Lynn Janson the top three or four sections in the nation in quality of players so this is extra special." Erskine, whose rivalry with Janson dates back to their days at U-M and MSU, respectively, took nine strokes on the third hole, shot 77 for 225 and went home without any of the money. The finale was to be a five-horse race, but only Janson and Picard could make spectacular bids, as it developed. John Traub discovered the kind of day it would be as early as fifth hole when he hit a shot into the crotch of a tree, 10 feet off the ground and it stayed there. The Great Oaks pro shot 72 and tied for third with Oakland Hills veteran Al Mengert, whose hopes vanished with a front-nine 38. He rallied for a 71 finish. Buddy Whitten, also In the chase when the day started, played well, but never got a charge mounted. He finished with 73 for 211. JANSON'S VICTORY gave him a slam of the Michigan Amateur ('68), Michigan Open ('74) and PGA, a feat matched only by Erskine. The rain, and more wind than blew for the first 36 holes, made Davison play tougher Wednesday, but Janson overcame his nerves and Picard's one-shot lead with a front-nine 34. See PGA, Page 4D McEnroe's win quiets hecklers at U.S. Open NEW YORK - (UPI) - John McEnroe, fighting the crowd as well as his opponent, warmed up for a second-' round match against Hie Nastase by routing Pavel Slozil of Czechoslovakia, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4, Wednesday in the U.S. Open Tennis Championships. . Eddie Dibbs, the ninth seed, had to struggle before finally overcoming teen-ager Tim Wilkison, 4-6, 2-6, 7-5, 6-2, 6-3, in a sidecourt match delayed two hours because of rain. Dibbs was serving at 2-3, 40-15 when a sudden rain fell, then required only 12 minutes to win the last four games from Wilkison, who had upset Guillermo Vilas In the second round at Wimbledon. "Wilkison played very well, he's a real good player," Dibbs said. "I had the momentum when the rain came. I felt he was getting tired and the break might help him a lot. But it turned out It helped me more." Wilkison agreed, saying, "I'd been tired for a while. The third set took a lot out of me. I had to play real tough and then I lost. It was a big disappointment." MCENROE, WHO GREW up just a few miles from the National Tennis Center, repeatedly complained about the crowd noise and movement during points, indicating he will be in the proper temper for Nastase, the king of tantrums. About two dozen times the umpire asked the sparse crowd to stop moving around. "It's not the people's fault, It's the fault of the ushers," said the third-seeded McEnroe. "I don't think they know what an odd game is. They ought to get people who can control the movement of the fans." UPI Photo See U.S. OPEN, Page6D John McEnroe reaches to return Pavel Slozil's shot in their match Wednesday. McEnroe won. EvenBrooks is surprised to be starting for the Lions By CURT SYLVESTER Free Press Sports Writer . If there was one player you wouldn't have expected to find in the Lions' opening game lineup it would have been Jon Brooks. He wasn't a first or even a second round draft choice. He couldn't practice the first couple of weeks of training camp. And midway in the exhibition schedule, he was moved to a new position. Brooks can run through a list of reasons why he wouldn't even have expected to be a starter himself until just the last couple of weeks. "I got hurt before training camp even started and I had some doubts about even making the team," he said after practice Wednesday. "Plus the place they drafted me (fourth round), nobody expected me to be starting. "I think they had some doubts that I had the size to handle the job and, at Clemson the linebackers didn't have much pass coverage responsibility. My strength wasn't that good either," he said with a grin. "All I had, on paper, was a little speed and quickness." BUT WHEN the Lions' defense goes to work Saturday night in Tampa Bay, Brooks will be there the starting strong side linebacker. With no apologies from coach Monte Clark. "He deserves the credit," Clark said Wednesday. "It was not a gift. I think he'll do well. I think he'll continue to progress and be a good player for us." Brooks was the Lions second of two fourth-round draft choices, actually the fifth player they drafted last May. And, although they considered him a gifted athlete, they obviously weren't looking at him as a strong side starter. Otherwise he wouldn't have been slotted behind veteran Dave Washington and fellow rookie linebacker Ken Fantettl. But once Brooks got over his early hamstring injury, he developed so quickly and showed so much ability that he couldn't be ignored. He was moved to the strong side, See BROOKS, Page 8D i

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