Where the Boys Are
Augusta National has dug in its heels and opened its wallet in a
battle to keep women out of the club. Can the Masters go on as
For many golf fans, watching the Masters on TV is like dreaming
in green. Next April it will only be better. Instead of four
minutes of commercials per hour, there will be no ads at all.
The first major of the year will still be on CBS, just as it has
been since 1956. It will just seem like PBS. Or heaven.
There is nothing serene, however, about what's going on behind
the sponsor-free Masters, though matters started out genteelly
enough in June. That's when Hootie Johnson, chairman of the
Augusta National Golf Club, received a brief, polite letter from
Martha Burk, head of the National Council of Women's
Organizations. Burk asked Johnson to "review your policies and
practices ... and open your membership to women now, so that this
is not an issue when the tournament is staged next year."
Women seem to have a powerful effect on the 71-year-old retired
South Carolina banker who runs Augusta National. Burk's measured
request got Hootie all hot and haughty. Perhaps it brought him
back to the highly annoying year of 1990, when public pressure
forced the club to admit its first black member. In his mind it
also raised the possibility of boycotts of the tournament's
sponsors and picketers at his gates. Johnson went public,
issuing a statement saying that change at his club will not come
"at the point of a bayonet." Last Friday he cut loose the three
sponsors of the Masters broadcast--Coca-Cola, Citigroup and
IBM--rather than force them to face the wrath of the feminists
whom he intends to fight till....
Wait a minute: How does Hootie think this is going to turn out,
anyway? On his side he has the dwindling herd of club folk, who
like to point out that they have the legal right to exclude
anyone they want. The viewing public may still tune in the
tournament (see poll), but not because they actively support
Hootie's position. They just want to see one of the finest
tournaments in golf, famous golfers and all those lovely azaleas.
Arrayed against Johnson are Burk, her millions of constituents
and, despite the lack of open animosity, CBS. A network
spokesman told SI on Monday, "CBS will broadcast the Masters
next April" and declined further comment. Even though Augusta
will pay millions that the sponsors were set to shell out,
Johnson is putting the network in an embarrassing position. Rest
assured, CBS will not go on indefinitely presenting a two-day,
7 1/2-hour infomercial for the Good Ol' Boy Way.
Hootie also could come under pressure from his own influential
pals--for example, Warren Buffett, a board member of Coca-Cola,
and Sandy Weill, chairman of Citigroup, are Augusta members.
These men are not the type to sit quietly by while Hootie turns
a golfer's paradise into a hotbed of controversy. The view from
here is that this problem won't last much longer; it's too easy
to solve. Simply let that first woman slip on a green jacket. It
won't be a great moment in fashion, but it will be a fine day
Poll: Has Augusta Gone Too Far?
Should the PGA allow a major to be played at a club that excludes
Yes 79% No 21%
Should CBS continue to broadcast the Masters?
Yes 85% No 15%
Will Augusta's move affect your decision to tune in next April?
I will still watch 82% I no longer plan to watch 7% Other 11%
Based on an online poll at cnnsi.com
A Man in Full
When Neil Parry said he'd be back on the football field, he meant
If San Jose State junior reserve safety Neil Parry fulfills his
vow to line up on the Spartans' kickoff team this season,
opposing return men and blockers had best beware. Parry may well
Consider his life since Oct. 14, 2000, the day he suffered a
gruesome injury at Spartan Stadium when a teammate rolled onto
Parry's right leg during a kickoff against Texas-El Paso. Parry
broke two bones and suffered artery and nerve damage; a
subsequent infection forced doctors to amputate the limb three
inches below the knee. Since then Parry has endured 20
additional surgeries, a dangerous blood clot, bone spurs that
developed from his leg's rubbing against his prosthesis and
months of painful rehabilitation--all without giving up his
dream of rejoining his team. Then last week, as he was starting
to believe his goal was within his grasp, Mutual of Omaha, which
covers much of his medical care through the NCAA, informed him
that his insurance would be canceled if he ever played football
again. "When the insurance thing came up," Parry says, "I really
thought that might be the end of the comeback."
Parry couldn't afford to risk losing his coverage: His medical
costs following the injury could reach $1.5 million, including
$15,000 every two years for a new prosthesis. But Parry was
determined and instantly knew, he says, that he was going to
fight the decision. What surprised him was the flurry of media
coverage and support he received. Last Thursday, a day after
Parry met with Mutual of Omaha and the NCAA to make his case,
the insurance company reversed itself and said it would continue
Parry's coverage, even if he returns to the field. "There was an
understanding that this was the right thing to do," NCAA
spokesman Wally Renfro said.
With the insurance issue resolved, Parry can now concentrate on
becoming the first nonkicker to play major college football with
a prosthetic leg. Each day he grows more accustomed to a
specially designed fiberglass and graphite foot that allows him
to sprint remarkably quickly and smoothly. (He runs the 40 in
4.8 seconds.) Parry knows he still has a long road ahead of him.
He has been practicing with the team since summer workouts began
and wants to improve his conditioning. Parry and coach Fitz Hill
have set no date for the return, although the Sept. 28 home
opener would be fitting--the opponent will be Texas-El Paso.
"Right now, I'm not ready, but I will be," Parry says. Given all
he's been through, who can doubt him? --Phil Taylor
$29,000 Price of the nine-carat Harry Winston diamond bracelet
Serena Williams wore during her matches at the U.S. Open.
5 Different quarterbacks in the last five seasons to start the
regular-season NFL opener for the Cincinnati Bengals.
43 Pounds Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen has lost since April.
Two Terrapins boosters are giving the school a total of $1,000
for every pound the now 312-pound Friedgen loses, to raise money
for renovating Maryland's field house.
47,784 Fans in attendance at Edmonton's Commonwealth Stadium for
the U.S.'s 1-0 win over Canada in the inaugural women's under-19
world soccer championship.
30,000 Fans that preregistered for tickets for the 2004 PGA
Championship at Whistling Straights in Sheboygan, Wis.
4 Women named Martina (Hingis, Muller, Navratilova, Sucha)
playing at the 2002 U.S. Open.
63,183 Brian Urlacher jerseys purchased from March to May
according to Reebok, making the Chicago Bears' linebacker the
league leader in jersey sales.
When Tyler Money went out for the Edinburgh (Ind.) High freshman
football team last month, he was told he couldn't play because
of his size--his hat size. At age 14 he's 6'1", 285 pounds, but
his head measures 26 inches around (a size 8-plus), and the
school had no helmet that large. In two weeks, though, equipment
maker Riddell is coming out with a new line of extra-large
helmets, which are expected to fit him. Here now, is a nod to
some of sport's enormous noggins.
Rangers rookie outfielder Kevin Mench, whose nickname is Shrek,
wears the biggest cap (size 8) in the majors.
Though some hockey players are huskier, the Maple Leafs' Tie
Domi, barely 5'10", has a head in the size-8 range.
Bears defensive tackle Ted Washington straps perhaps the biggest
helmet in the NFL on to his 25 7/8-inch (8-plus) skull.
Shoot, the turns at Bristol are tighter than the ones around
NASCAR driver Jimmy Spencer's head (7 5/8).
Who's deciding which sports will be dropped from the Olympics?
It took nearly three decades for the International Olympic
Committee to recognize softball as a medal event, but it may
take just three months for the sport to lose that status. A
report released on Aug. 28 by the IOC's program commission
recommended the exclusion of softball, as well as baseball,
modern pentathlon and several individual disciplines, from the
2008 Summer Games in Beijing. The next day the committee's
executive board postponed any action until it meets again in
November, leaving the threatened sports to twist in the wind.
"It makes me angry," says Lisa Fernandez, the star pitcher who
helped the U.S. win softball's first two gold medals, in 1996
and 2000. "We've worked so hard to become an Olympic sport."
The report singled out softball and baseball for not being
popular enough outside of Asia and the Americas, but some feel
there may be more to it than that. While the IOC is a global
organization, almost half of its 127 members--and seven of the
eight men who have served as president, including current chief
Jacques Rogge--come from Europe, where neither game has caught
on. If the executive board endorses the recommendations, the
decision would become final with a simple majority vote of IOC
members in November in Mexico City. (The board will also discuss
adding sports, including golf and seven-man rugby.) "I don't
want to say that Europe runs everything, but the fact is that
they do," says Don Porter, president of the International
Softball Federation. "I'm not sure what figures they used in
While an Olympic banishment wouldn't be fatal to softball in the
United States, it would be a serious blow to the game's
worldwide growth. The sport is currently played in 124
countries. "We've had so many countries grow and improve," says
Fernandez, "and the Olympics are a big part of that." --Mark Beech
With two counts of stalking tennis player Serena Williams,
Albrecht Stromeyer, a 34-year-old Frankfurt native who was taken
into custody last Saturday in Queens, N.Y., after a police
officer spotted him watching the tennis star through a
chain-link fence at the National Tennis Center. Authorities said
Stromeyer has followed Williams around the world since June 2001.
Minnesota football player Brandon Hall. The 19-year-old redshirt
freshman was fatally shot following an altercation outside a
Minneapolis bar early Sunday morning. Hours earlier Hall, a 6'5"
270-pound defensive lineman from Detroit, made one tackle in his
first collegiate game, a 42-0 win over Southwest Texas State. As
of Monday police had made three arrests, but no charges had been
The Wisconsin-UNLV game with the Badgers leading 27-7 with 7:41
left after an equipment failure at a power riser, knocking out
power in the Rebels' Sam Boyd Stadium. Though it was an official
game by the NCAA's standards, all bets in Nevada were considered
void because the state's sports books stipulate that a game must
go at least 55 minutes to be official.
From Louisiana Tech University, women's basketball coach Leon
Barmore. In his 20 years as head coach, Barmore, 58, had a
576-87 record; his .869 winning percentage ranks No. 1 alltime
among Division I coaches (men or women). Barmore's Lady
Techsters made it to the Final Four nine times and played in
five NCAA championship games, winning the national title in
1988. He previously retired in March 2000 but returned 26 days
After choosing a product name linked to the Nazi death camps,
British sportswear manufacturer Umbro. The company has promised
to be "more careful" in the future after calling one of its
sneakers Zyklon. During World War II, Zyklon B gas was used to
kill millions in concentration camps.
Why you should know her name
Iso, 31, the Pittsburgh Steelers' new assistant trainer, is the
NFL's first full-time female trainer. The Tokyo native interned
with the Steelers during training camp in 2000 and '01.
Why she tapes up 300-pound men for a living
After tearing her left ACL playing high school basketball in
Tokyo, Iso realized her chances of becoming an elite athlete
were slim and became interested in athletic training. She came
to the U.S. in 1989 to attend Oregon State, where she learned
about football as a student trainer. After getting her M.S. in
sports medicine from San Jose State in 1995, she was the
football trainer at Portland State for five years.
Why you don't want her knocking on your door at 6 a.m.
While working 16-hour days during the Steelers' training camp in
Latrobe, Pa., Iso often woke up players early for random drug
tests or scheduled rehab. Her normal duties also include
stretching and taping players, keeping medical records and
packing equipment for road trips.
THE WEEK IN TELEVISION
SATURDAY 9/7 > CBS 5 PM > Miami at Florida
If you thought the Gore-Bush fight was contentious, just wait
until the Hurricanes visit the Swamp in the first regular-season
meeting between the teams since 1987.
SUNDAY 9/8 > NBC 4 PM > World Basketball Championships Final
This won't be a layup for the U.S., especially if the opponent
is Yugoslavia. The defending champs have five NBA players on the
roster, including Vlade Divac and Peja Stojakovic.
SUNDAY 9/8 > ESPN 8:30 PM > Cowboys at Texans
The last battle in Texas that meant this much was contested at
the Alamo by General Santa Anna and Jim Bowie.
MONDAY 9/9 > ABC 9 PM > Steelers at Patriots
Can John Madden help stem seven years of declining ratings on
Monday Night Football? We begin to find out tonight.
WEDNESDAY 9/11 > ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN News and ESPN Classic 8:46 AM
A moment of silence to honor those who lost their lives last
THURSDAY 9/12 > ESPN 7:30 PM > Marshall at Virginia Tech
If Thundering Herd quarterback Byron Leftwich hopes to keep his
Heisman hopes alive, he'll need to shine in this rare national
television appearance, set in a hostile environment.
SATURDAY 9/7 > CBS 11 AM and 8:30 PM
It's called Super Saturday for a reason: the men's semifinals,
followed by the women's (a.k.a. Williamses') final in prime
time. If top-ranked Serena Williams takes the title, she'll
become the first woman in five years to win three majors in the
same season. But older sister Venus might have something to say
--Tennis Channel, Anyone?
--Really Big Screen TV
Are enough people fanatical about tennis to support a 24-hour
network? We'll see when the Tennis Channel launches in December,
but the initial steps made by the network have been impressive.
Founders Steve Bellamy and David Meister have already lined up a
total of 14 WTA and ATP tour events. They plan to air
instructional programs hosted by Pete Sampras, Brad Gilbert and
possibly Andre Agassi (Sampras and Agassi are investors in the
channel), and a behind-the-scenes show called No Strings, which
will take viewers to places like Sampras's private jet as he
heads to a tournament.
It won't challenge Signs at the box office, but this weekend's
Colorado State-UCLA football game will be available in three
movie theaters in Denver and one in L.A. The live
high-definition telecast will cost fans between $6 and $10 and
is a joint effort of Mark Cuban's HDNet TV network, Fox Sports
Net, DIRECTV and a subsidiary of the Regal Entertainment Group,
the largest theater operator in the U.S. If enough tickets are
sold, the companies hope to team up later this year for other
sporting events at moviehouses across the country.
Interviewing a subject through an interpreter is never easy, but
ESPN's David Aldridge scored last week in SportsCenter's "Sunday
Conversation with Yao Ming." During a four-minute interview
Aldridge got Yao, who will play for the Houston Rockets this
season, to comment on how China emphasizes the team game more
than the NBA, how he will deal with American stardom ("That's a
real big headache for me," Yao says) and which NBA stars he most
looks forward to playing. To the last question Yao immediately
answered, "Shaq." --John O'Keefe
Legends of the Fall
The start of the NFL season marks the first time since 1982 that
offensive lineman Bruce Matthews won't be suiting up. A
seven-time All-Pro, Matthews retired this summer having played
296 games in 19 seasons for the team that started as the Houston
Oilers and in 1997 became the Tennessee Titans. Who is the only
lineman to play longer than Matthews for a single franchise?
a. Dan Dierdorf, Cardinals
b. Jim Marshall, Vikings
c. Jackie Slater, Rams
d. Jeff Van Note, Falcons
Wideout Cris Carter retired in May after catching 1,093 passes
for 13,833 yards during a 15-year career with the Eagles and the
Vikings. He made the first of his 1,004 receptions for Minnesota
on Sept. 30, 1990. What quarterback delivered that pass?
This Week's Matchup Match the NFL great with his last team.
1. Greg Lloyd a. Carolina Panthers
2. Art Monk b. Miami Dolphins
3. Andre Reed c. Philadelphia Eagles
4. Thurman Thomas d. Washington Redskins
On the Run
Put these scrambling NFL quarterbacks, including the recently
retired Randall Cunningham, in order of most career rushing yards.
a. Randall Cunningham c. Fran Tarkenton
b. John Elway d. Steve Young
MARATHON MAN: c. Offensive lineman Jackie Slater played for 20
seasons, all with the Rams. He was with Los Angeles from 1976 to
'94 before moving with the team to St. Louis for the '95 season.
SPECIAL DELIVERY: Cris Carter's first Minnesota reception--a
nine-yard catch against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers--was delivered
by Rich Gannon, now with the Oakland Raiders.
THIS WEEK'S MATCHUP: 1. a; 2. c; 3. d; 4. b
ON THE RUN: Cunningham (4,928 rushing yards), Young (4,239
yards), Tarkenton (3,674 yards), Elway (3,407 yards)
bone spurs." --A MAN IN FULL, PAGE 22