At age 75 of undisclosed causes, former Packers and Lions tight end Ron Kramer (above), whose blocking on the vaunted Green Bay power sweep of the 1960s (SI, Sept. 6) was compared by coach Vince Lombardi to "having a 12th man." Raised in Detroit, Kramer made his mark at Michigan as a three-sport star. In football he was twice an All-America and had his number 87 jersey retired for his work at offensive and defensive end, running back, quarterback, kicker and receiver. As a senior captain on the basketball team he scored a then record 1,124 points. And on the track team he catapulted his 230-pound frame in the high jump and put the shot. The No. 4 overall draft pick by the Packers in '57, he caught two touchdowns in Green Bay's 37--0 rout of the Giants in the '61 NFL Championship Game. Kramer amassed 229 catches for 3,272 yards and 16 touchdowns over 10 seasons (including two All-Pro years, in '62 and '63), the last three spent with his hometown Lions.
Roughly 2,300 feet underground to the 33 miners who have been trapped in a collapsed mine shaft below Chile's Atacama Desert since Aug. 5, an international soccer friendly between Chile and Ukraine. On Sept. 7 authorities involved in the rescue effort (which is expected to take at least another month) used a miniature fiber-optic projector, snaked down the same shaft used to deliver food and medications, to air a 2--1 Chilean loss across a 50-inch section of rock wall. Among the miners is one former Chilean national-team player, 53-year-old Franklin Lobos, who was said to have provided running commentary.
September 19, 2010
For two games after he flipped his middle finger at opposing fans during a nationally televised high school football game, 17-year-old Nick O'Leary, grandson of golf legend Jack Nicklaus. O'Leary, who plays for reigning Florida 4A state champion Dwyer High, and whom Rivals.com ranks as the nation's top tight end, last week was at Ohio Stadium (on the campus of Ohio State, Nicklaus's alma mater) for the Kirk Herbstreit National Kickoff Classic against Glenville (Ohio) High. O'Leary racked up a touchdown and 156 yards on nine catches, the final two coming on a last-ditch drive into Glenville territory, at which point the Panthers were stymied by two controversial officiating calls. After Glenville won 26--22, O'Leary, who was said to have been jeered by players and fans, made the gesture, which was caught by ESPN's cameras. Herbstreit, a former Buckeyes quarterback, weighed in on the officiating, saying, "I'd feel like O'Leary, too."
Of spending more than $700,000 in business loan funds on personal purchases, former Michigan star and NBA player Rumeal Robinson. On Sept. 8, at a federal hearing in Des Moines, Iowa, Robinson (who lifted the Wolverines to a national title by hitting two free throws with three seconds left against Seton Hall in the 1989 NCAA final) was found guilty on 11 counts, including bank bribery, wire fraud and conspiracy to commit bank fraud. Those charges stemmed from a series of loans—arranged by a loan officer, Brian Williams, who was also found guilty of conspiracy to commit bank fraud—that Robinson had taken out under the guise of pursuing a development deal in Jamaica. Instead, Robinson allocated the funds to himself: He spent $44,000 on new or leased vehicles, including three Mercedes, two BMWs and five motorcycles; $3,000 on strip-club tabs; and $1,000 on a new dog. Robinson faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in jail and $1 million in fines for each of his charges.
Following nearly 11 years as goalkeeper for the U.S. women's soccer team that won Olympic gold in 1996 and 2004 as well as the World Cup in 1999, Briana Scurry. The Minneapolis native had her first senior national cap in '94 and logged 173 more appearances in net, an American record. Most indelible among Scurry's 133 wins was the victory resulting from her stop (above) of a shootout penalty kick by China's Liu Ying in the '99 Cup final. Less memorable was Scurry's 2007 Cup effort, in which she was shelled 4--0 in a semifinal loss to Brazil. Afterward, backup Hope Solo was kicked off the team for calling Scurry's start "the wrong decision."
And charged with felony grand larceny in connection with a domestic disturbance and the alleged theft of a cellphone belonging to his former girlfriend, WBC welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. According to a report filed by Josie Harris, with whom Mayweather fathered three children, the boxer allegedly roughed up Harris last Thursday and threatened the lives of her and her new boyfriend. Harris's lawyer explained that his client was later unable to find her iPhone, which is valued near $500, prompting the theft charges. A representative for Mayweather, who was jailed briefly on Friday without entering a plea, has denied the charges. The latest incident comes two weeks after Mayweather took to cyberspace to launch a racist rant against WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines, his only rival as pound-for-pound king. "As soon as we come off vacation, we're going to cook that little yellow chump," said Mayweather. The National Federation of Filipino American Associations condemned that attack, and HBO Sports president Ross Greenburg, whose network has shown many of Mayweather's bouts, suggested that the fighter might need an intervention.
Consecutive games of at least five innings pitched by the Padres' Mat Latos without allowing more than two runs; the streak, a modern-day first, was snapped when he gave up five runs in a 6--1 loss to the Giants on Sunday.
Positions played for the Double A West Tenn Diamond Jaxx by Leury Bonilla on Sept. 6, starting at centerfield and ending at pitcher, where he fanned a batter and allowed one hit in an 8--0 win.
Major league games last Saturday in which the lone runs came on solo homers, a historical first.
Grand slams hit by rookie Red Sox centerfielder Ryan Kalish since his July 31 MLB debut, his most recent coming against the Rays on Sept. 6. Only two other players (the Red Sox' Faye Throneberry in 1952 and Ellis Burks in '87) have hit slams in their first six weeks in the majors.
Straight seasons in which the Yankees' Nick Swisher has hit his 26th home run on Sept. 8, both walk-off dingers that beat the Rays (in 2009) and the Orioles ('10).
THEY SAID IT
New England's gun-toting human mascot, responding to a tweet by the Bengals' Chad Ochocinco earlier in the week in which the receiver said he would fire one of the minutemen's muskets if he scored in last Sunday's contest in Foxborough:
"Let him try to pry this gun from my cold, meaningful hands. We're Patriots. We don't give up our weapons."