West Virginia squeaked past Villanova 76-75, found easier pickings in beating George Washington 93-66 to run winning streak to 28 and stand alone as nation's only unbeaten major college team after Georgia Tech upset Mississippi State 78-61. But week's loudest applause was drawn by Cincinnati's brilliant sophomore, Oscar Robertson ("He's merely wonderful"), who enthralled New Yorkers with record-breaking 56-point spree in team's 118-54 victory over Seton Hall (see page 22) at Madison Square Garden, added 35 more in 127-57 rout of North Texas State to boost per game average to 32.34 and overtake Kansas' ailing Wilt Chamberlain in race for scoring honors. North Carolina fell again, bowing to determined Maryland 74-61 before 15,100.
Syracuse's Dolph Schayes, his feather-touch shot clicking for 23 points in 135-109 victory over Detroit, lifted his NBA lifetime scoring total to 11,770 to break George Mikan's record, moved Nats within 4½ games of Boston Celtics, who missed ailing Bill Russell badly enough to drop three out of four. In West, St. Louis Hawks rolled merrily along with 8½-game lead, losing only to Philadelphia in four games, but kept watchful eye cocked on second-place Cincinnati Royals, who won four out of five.
January 20, 1958
North blocked punt by Auburn's Billy Atkins for second-period safety, took advantage of his three out-of-bounds kickoffs to start winning touchdown drive, held breath briefly while Atkins missed field goal in closing seconds to edge South 15-13 in pro showcase Senior Bowl at Mobile.
NCAA Football Rules Committee, meeting at Fort Lauderdale, Fla., adopted first revolutionary scoring change in 52 years, voted unanimously to set ball back to 3-yard line after touchdown, award two points for conversion scored on run or pass, one point if scored on kick. Said Chairman Fritz Crisler of Michigan: "It will add drama to what has been the dullest, most stupid play in the game."
West turned loose Baltimore's Alan Ameche on 66-yard run to set up 9-yard field goal by Bert Rechichar in second quarter, added two more touchdowns and another field goal in last half to defeat East 26-7 in Pro Bowl at Los Angeles.
NFL second-division dwellers continued policy of blaming it on coach, sent two more packing. Green Bay, last in West, replaced Lisle (Liz) Blackbourn with his No. 1 aide, Ray (Scooter) McLean; Philadelphia, next-to-last in East, fired old Notre Darner Hugh Devore "in the best interests of the Eagles." Chicago Cards, who did their coach-dumping act week earlier, named Frank Ivy, onetime protégé of Oklahoma's Bud Wilkinson and last year leader of Edmonton Eskimos, to succeed Ray Richards.
Sugar Hart, lanky Philadelphia welterweight, had trouble unloading his combinations on crowding Larry Baker but found range in late rounds to punch out 10-round decision at Chicago. Loser Baker, queried on power in Hart's right hand, realistically reported: "Maybe he hit me with some good rights, but I don't remember. Maybe I've just got a hard head like my Mora always said I had."
NBA Executive Committee, meeting in Philadelphia, began to push harder for Zora Folley-Eddie Machen heavyweight bout, may soon be rewarded with news that they will meet in San Francisco. Other NBA moves: accepted Massachusetts' resignation from NBA; gave Massachusetts' recognized champion, Virgil Akins, shove to rear by endorsing Pennsylvania Commission proposal for top-ranked Isaac Logart to meet winner of Vince Martinez-Gil Turner fight for vacant welterweight title; brought joy to wily old Jack Kearns with ultimatum to Lightweight Champion Joe Brown to defend against Kearns' No. 1-ranked tiger, Kenny Lane, by April 15 or lose crown.
College soccer coaches, their autumn sport long upstaged by football, were all but leaping with joy at annual meeting in New York after they received encouraging boost from NCAA, which agreed to sanction national championship tournament in 1958. This year's top teams, as selected by Intercollegiate Soccer Football Association: CCNY and Springfield.
Round Table, off on lonesome jaunt from start, ran away and hid from other 4-year-olds, striding home by four lengths over The Searcher under eased-up stretch ride by Willie Shoemaker in $27,300 San Fernando Stakes at Santa Anita to raise lifetime earnings to $689,334, eighth highest in racing history.
St. Amour II, Shoe Manufacturer Frank C. Rand Jr.'s English-bred 5-year-old son of Palestine, churned up out of ruck, made rivals look like so many fence posts as he burst past field to win $64,100 Tropical Handicap by 2½ lengths at Tropical Park.
Kentucky Derby may seem to be off in distant future to some but to horseplayers, who measure time by charts, it is only 100 days or so to May 3. This week, John and Tony Alessio, custodians of Caliente Winter Book, agreed to come to aid of restless improvers of breed, told SPORTS ILLUSTRATED how they see Derby odds today: Nadir 4-1; Jewel's Reward and Old Pueblo 6-1; Misty Flight and Terra Firma 10-1; Strong Ruler 12-1; Kentucky Pride 15-1; Alhambra, Jester, Li'l Fella and Tim Tarn 20-1; Temple Hill 25-1 and Idun, unbeaten 2-year-old filly, 30-1.
Congressmen Emanuel Celler of New York and Patrick J. Hillings of California, two of most violent proponents of attempt to bring baseball under antitrust laws, took cue from New York's Congressman Kenneth B. Keating (SI, June 17), retreated to middle ground with statement they now favored legislation that would exempt all but "purely business aspects" of all pro sports from antitrust regulation.
Moscow Radio, pointing up intense Soviet campaign to popularize once bourgeois game of tennis among workers, let world know that Russia may send "young players aged 17 or under" to Wimbledon to take pot luck in junior division. News raised some eyebrows, caused wonder about how long it would be before Russians occupied center court at Wimbledon.
Pancho Gonzales and Lew Hoad continued to trade tennis world's most powerful smashes on even terms in Australia, splitting four more matches to bring pro tour score to 4-4.
U.S. Skiers were set for world championships at Lahti next month after trials at Ishpeming, Mich. and McCall, Idaho. Jumpers: Ansten Samuelstuen of Denver (see below); Art Tokle of Lake Telemark, N.J.; Dick Rahoi, Jim Houst of Iron Mountain, Mich.; Will Rasmussen, Rudy Maki of Ishpeming. Nordic: Alf Vincellette of Highland Falls, N.Y.; Frank Commack of Wenatchee, Wash. Cross-country: Mack Miller of McCall; Leo Massa of Matawan, N.J.: Sven Johannson of Anchorage; Tauno Pulkiinen of Brooklyn.
Montreal Canadiens, even without injured stars, played bang-bang hockey, routing Chicago 11-3, New York, 9-3 before losing to Black Hawks 7-1, but were so far ahead in NHL that rivals concentrated on fight for second. Detroit extended winning streak to four to oust Rangers from runner-up spot.
Walt Hansgen, nation's leading sports car driver last year (see page 64), got off and roaring in race for 1958 honors, pushing Briggs Cunningham's D Jag at 80.732 mph average to win 90-mile Orange Bowl test at Miami after Carroll Shelby, early leader, was forced out by leaky oil pump with 40 miles to go.
Bill Casper, as casual as though he were going to the neighborhood grocery for a can of beans, shot icy-calm, third-round 69 to tie early-leader Bob Rosburg, shrugged off pressure for last-round 71 and 277 total while Rosburg blew sky high with 81, to win Bing Crosby invitational at Pebble Beach, Calif.
MISSING—Harvey Conover, 65, Mamaroneck, N.Y. publisher (Aviation Age, Purchasing), sportsman, former commodore of Cruising Club of America, Larchmont Yacht Club and Swedish American Sailing Association; along with wife, Dorothy, 60; son Lawrence, 27, and his wife Laury, 25; William Fluegelman, 29, New York textile executive; aboard 45-foot yawl Revonoc in wind-lashed seas off southern coast of Florida (see-page 10).
DIED—Paul H. Pilgrim, 74, only man to win both 400-meter and 800-meter Olympic titles (1905), longtime NYAC manager of athletics; of heart attack, at White Plains, N.Y.