SI View The Week in TV Sports

October 03, 1999

DON'T MISS

Tuesday 10/5

Baseball Divisional Playoffs
TUESDAY ESPN 1 PM AND 4 PM, NBC 8 PM; WEDNESDAY ESPN 1 PM AND 4
PM, FOX 8 PM; THURSDAY ESPN 4 PM, FOX 8 PM; FRIDAY ESPN 4 PM,
NBC 8 PM
Maybe they should be called the Latin American League Playoffs.
Assuming that the Red Sox (the leaders in the wild-card race
through Sunday) join the Indians, the Rangers and the Yankees in
the American League competition, 16 of the 36 nonpitchers in the
likely starting lineups will be of Latino heritage. That
includes MVP candidates Roberto Alomar (right) and Manny Ramirez
of Cleveland, Nomar Garciaparra of Boston, and Rafael Palmeiro
and Ivan Rodriguez of Texas. Moreover, the pivotal pitchers
could be Pedro Martinez, the Sox's Cy Young shoo-in, and Yankees
closer Mariano Rivera, who was unscored upon in his last 26 2/3
innings. ¬°Vivan los Latinos!

HIGHLIGHTS

Saturday 10/2

Oklahoma at Notre Dame
NBC 2:30 PM
Tradition holds that in Tornado Alley you're more likely to see
airborne pigs than airborne pigskin. Under new head coach Bob
Stoops, however, the Sooners are throwing the ball. In each of
his first three starts Oklahoma's junior quarterback Josh Heupel
broke school single-game records for passing yardage. In the
land of stiff winds the Sooners have breezed to three victories
by a combined score of 132-31. Meanwhile, Notre Dame seeks
relief in the wake of a 1-3 start, a dismissed reserve
quarterback and looming NCAA sanctions. Only Frank McCourt
authors more depressing Irish sagas.

Monday 10/4

Bills at Dolphins
ABC 9 PM
Miami wideout Tony Martin, recently acquitted in a felony
money-laundering case, might understandably be shaken by the
question, "Do you expect these outstanding Bills to pose a
problem?" Since rejoining the fin de siecle Fins, Martin has
been money in the bank, averaging a team-high 22.2 yards per
catch. The Dolphins (2-0) have the longest conference
championship game drought--six seasons--of any team in the AFC
East. With Martin, who has played in Super Bowls with the '94
Chargers and the '98 Falcons, the Dolphins' claim to a title
gains currency.

Red Files: Soviet Sports Wars
PBS 9 PM (check local listings)
From the 1950s, when athletes such as gymnast Larissa Latynina
were vaulting to Olympic gold, through the '80s, when Sergei
Bubka was vaulting to world records, the Soviet Union's athletic
power was as imposing as its political might. This solid one-hour
documentary shows how, during the cold war, Soviet athletes were
prisoners of their physical gifts. The best segment explores the
friendship between long jumpers Ralph Boston of the U.S. and Igor
Ter-Ovanesyan of the U.S.S.R. (Ralph and Igor, soon to be a CBS
sitcom). "We had some great times together," recalls Boston.
"Some of them I can't tell you about."

Tuesday 10/5

Sports Night
ABC 9:30 PM
With apologies to my next-page neighbor (SI, Sept. 20), this
lively sitcom about a sports-highlights show resembles a M*A*S*H
unit. Managing editor Isaac (Robert Guillaume) is Colonel
Potter; wisecracking anchors Casey (Peter Krause) and Dan (Josh
Charles) are Hawkeye and B.J.; and nebbish savant Jeremy (Joshua
Malina) is Radar. The second season premiere has Hot Lips--er,
executive producer Dana (Felicity Huffman)--stoking the romantic
coals with Casey.

ALL TIMES EASTERN. SCHEDULES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE. SOURCE:
NIELSEN SPORTS MARKETING SERVICE.

COLOR PHOTO: V.J. LOVERO

THE RATING

6.3

NBC's preliminary rating for Sunday's Ryder Cup telecast--the
best final-day rating ever, up 43% from the previous high (4.4
in 1995).

THE ZAPPER

If you thought baseball beat writers were fashion-challenged,
fast-food-fueled, sleep-deprived hacks, think again. Buster
Olney, who covers the Yankees for The New York Times and whose
job is illuminatingly examined this week on PBS's journalism
series Media Matters (check local listings), is no hack. Says a
colleague, "He gets here first, leaves last and writes the
best." The shots of reporters working a locker room will remind
you of an African watering hole scene from a Wild Kingdom
episode--only with more scavengers.

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)