BASKETBALL—The American Basketball Association continued its raids on the NBA, picking off DAVE BING and four referees, and signing LUCIOUS JACKSON (page 30). Bing, the NBA's leading scorer two years ago, will join the Washington Caps in 1971-72, but Jackson later decided his NBA contract was still valid and agreed to a new three-year deal with Philadelphia.
BOATING—The Royal Canadian Yacht Club's MAN-ITOU successfully defended the Canada's Cup on Lake Ontario by winning three consecutive races in its series with the U.S. challenger, Niagara, of the Cleveland Yacht Club.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL—College football's centennial season got off to a flying start in Dallas as AIR FORCE ran up a 23-0 halftime lead over Southern Methodist and then withstood a second-half passing onslaught by the Mustangs' Chuck Hixson to win 26-22 (page 101). Things were no calmer at North Carolina State, where soph Quarterback Larry Russell of WAKE FOREST directed his team to a touchdown with five seconds left and then passed for two points and a 22-21 upset victory for first-year Coach Cal Stoll. UCLA's JC-transfer quarterback, Dennis Dummit, threw a 60-yard TD pass on the game's fourth play, and the Bruins proceeded to stomp Oregon State 37-0.
FOOTBALL—AFL: While the NFL tuned up in its final exhibition games, the AFL opened its 10th regular season and its champion team beat a jinx. The NEW YORK Jets defeated scrappy Buffalo 33-19, their first victory in War Memorial Stadium since they changed their name from the Titans. The Bills rallied from a 19-3 deficit to tie the game 19-19 as rookies Bill Enyart and O. J. Simpson scored touchdowns, but Matt Snell went over from 11 yards out and Paul Crane intercepted a Jack Kemp pass and returned it 23 yards for a TD to clinch the victory. Broadway Joe Namath had a less than mediocre day (seven completions in 19 attempts, three interceptions). Quarterback Greg Cook led CINCINNATI to a 27-21 win over Miami, throwing a pair of early touchdown passes to Eric Crab-tree. A spectacular 105-yard kickoff return by Miami rookie Eugene (Mercury) Morris did not prevent Bengals Coach Paul Brown from enjoying his 300th victory in 35 years. Second-round draft choice Jerry Levias of Houston scared OAKLAND with a 15-yard touchdown catch that momentarily gave the Oilers a 17-14 lead late in the fourth quarter. But the Raiders went ahead to stay 21-17 when Quarterback Daryle Lamonica hit Warren Wells on a 64-yard touchdown pass play. Levias still could have pulled the game out if he had not dropped a long pass in the closing minutes. KANSAS CITY carried its winning habit into the regular season with a 27-9 win at San Diego. Wide Receiver Otis Taylor caught two TD passes from Len Dawson. Charger Quarterback John Hadl threw four interceptions and fumbled once. DENVER Quarterback Steve Tensi had his most enjoyable day as a pro. throwing three touchdown passes as the Broncos breezed by Boston 35-7.
September 21, 1969
NFL: Meanwhile, back in the older league, ST. LOUIS Quarterback Charley Johnson threw three scoring passes and substitute Jim Hart threw a fourth as the Cardinals edged Chicago 37-31. Gale Sayers had a 70-yard run from scrimmage for the Bears. DETROIT's defense held New Orleans to eight first downs while the youthful Lion offense rolled up 21 of its own and routed the Saints 42-7. PITTSBURGH gave the New York Giants their fifth straight defeat 17-13 before 8,000 shivering fans in Montreal. GREEN BAY beat Atlanta 38-24 as Bart Starr clicked on 15 of 18 passes and Travis Williams scored twice. MINNESOTA defeated Cleveland 23-16 when Joe Kapp and Bill Brown broke the game's third tie with a 70-yard pass play. LOS ANGELES, with Clancy Williams starting the scoring on an 86-yard interception return, built up a big lead and almost blew it before beating San Francisco 31-28. PHILADELPHIA scored 12 points in the third quarter on a touchdown, conversion, field goal and safety to beat Washington 26-17. Former Heisman Trophy winner Roger Staubach of Dallas drew most of the applause for his exciting scrambles, but BALTIMORE picked off four of his passes and won 23-7.
HARNESS RACING—Hambletonian winner LINDY'S PRIDE ($2.80) scored a 1¾-length victory over The Prophet at Liberty Bell Park in the $101,670 Colonial Trot, Pennsylvania's richest horse race.
TRACK a FIELD—Kenya's KIPCHOGE KEINO ran the second-fastest 1,500 meters of the year (3:37.3) at the Indian Summer Games at South Lake Tahoe, Calif. His time was the equivalent of a 3:54.3 mile. LEE EVANS missed a world record by .2 with a 44.9 in the 440. JOHN CARLOS equaled the world mark in the 100-meter dash (9.9) but he was aided by a 7.1-mph wind, and so the record will be disallowed. BOB SEAGREN and DICK RAILSBACK vaulted 17'8¾", but both missed at 18'. It was the first time two men had gone so high in one meet.
MILEPOSTS—HIRED: To replace the much-criticized Allie Sherman as head coach of the New York Giants, ALEX WEBSTER, former Giant fullback who was one of Allie's assistants. Sherman, a onetime lefty quarterback for Brooklyn College and the Philadelphia Eagles, was NFL Coach of the Year twice, and his teams won three Eastern Division titles. His eight-year record was 57-51-4.
HIRED: To replace retired Coach Bill Russell of the Boston Celtics, TOMMY HEINSOHN, former Holy Cross All-America and Celtic forward for nine years.
UNRETIRED: GEORGE SEALS, Chicago Bear offensive guard, after settling a contract dispute with Owner George Halas that had caused him to quit pro football. However, the one-month holdout cost Seals $7,400 in fines.
RETIRED: Flanker BOBBY MITCHELL, 34, of the Washington Redskins, to a front-office personnel job. Mitchell was an All-America running back at Illinois before joining Jimmy Brown in Cleveland's Mr. Outside-Mr. Inside backfield. He was traded to the Redskins in 1961 and promptly led the NFL in pass receiving. In his 11-year career as a pro, Mitchell accounted for almost exactly eight miles (14,078 yards) rushing, catching passes and returning kicks, second only to Brown in league history, and also ranks second to Ray Berry of Baltimore with 521 pass receptions for 7,954 yards.
DIED: HELEN SOBEL SMITH, 59, who as Helen Sobel played the best bridge of any woman in the world for 35 years and was Charles Goren's favorite partner, of cancer, in Detroit (page 96).
DIED: HEC KILREA, 61, member of the 1936 and 1937 Stanley Cup-winning Detroit Red Wings. He played in the National Hockey League from 1927 through 1939 with Ottawa, Toronto and Detroit. A naturalized American, he won the Distinguished Service Cross and Croix de Guerre in World War II.
DIED: FRANK BUNCOM, 29, Cincinnati Bengal linebacker, of a heart attack in his hotel room Sunday morning before the team's regular-season home opener. Buncom, a former USC tackle and San Diego's sixth-round draft choice in 1961, was All-AFL for the Chargers in 1967 and was drafted by Cincy in 1968. He left a wife and son.
DIED: JOHN BENINGTON, 47, basketball coach at Michigan State and father of nine children, from his second heart attack in five months, in the coaches' locker room in MSU's Jenison Gymnasium. Benington played football and basketball at the University of San Francisco and was captain of the 1949 USF basketball team that won the National Invitation Tournament. He began his career as a head coach at Drake in 1956 and later moved to St. Louis, where his Billikens earned five NIT berths and a 118-71 record. His record at Michigan State was 56-38, and the Spartans tied for the Big Ten title in 1967.