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Before we all adjourn for intersession, I thought this would be an opportune moment to fill you in on some fastbreaking news items that have crossed this desk in the past few days. Some of you probably aren't getting your Times delivered anyway so this hot copy might have passed you by.
News Item: Jimmy Carter sworn in as President.
After eight years of a Republican administration, golf is no longer the sport of the chief executive. Carter has already declared his devoted attachment to that pastoral pastime, fishing.
President Ford has a handicap estimated at 16 and is often known to play a Sunday breakfast round with other politicos at Washington's all-male Burning Tree golf club. Ford belted a drive further than Arnold Palmer at the opening ceremonies of the World Gold Hall of Fame and teamed with Jack Nicklaus in the Jackie Geason pro-am. Former presidents Nixon and Eisenhower were also avid golfers while in the oval office. The switch from gold to fishing in the White House signals a deep-rooted transition in the national temperament. The country is already heading in more new directions than were perceived by political forecasters, who missed this noteworthy occurrence in the symbolic sphere of government.
Carter, however, is an affectionado of Putt-Putt golf, a souped-up version of miniature golf popular down South. David Lloyd, president of Putt-Putt Golf Courses of America, was recently quoted as saying, "Mr. Carter is a great friend of Putt-Putt. It will be a wonderful boost to have our game played by the President of the United States."
The sport that should soon be sweeping the nation is played on artifical green carpeting and par is two strokes a hole. The Professional Putters Association sponsors a U.S. tour with 600 certified members. There are 60 tour events and $300,000 in prize money is dispensed annually.
You Must Be Kidding
The all-time low round for an 18 hole Putt-Putt course is an 18, carried by a Florida steakhouse proprietor.
News Item: Frisbee golf craze in Southern California.
While we're on the subject of golf, the latest spin-off since the day when King James I ruled Scotland is frisbee golf. In brief, the players try to toss frisbees into baskets fastened to poles while avoiding the natural hazards that strew the course. Three free courses are enjoying heavy traffic in Loss Angeles Country. The one in Pasadena attracts 5000 players a week. The 18-hole low score is a 42.
News Item: Bob Zuffelato steps down as head basketball coach of B.C.
Zuffelato replaced Chuck Daly as coach of the Eagles in 1971. Last year's highly-touted quintet went 9-17 after it had ranked 19th in the nation in Sports Illustrated's pre-season poll. Apparently, Zuffelato saw the writing on the wall when his team began to flounder once again midway through the season.
Zuffelato was a top-notch recruiter, the kind of coach decked out in three-piece suits from "Beau Brummel" who recruited in cars supplied gratis by local dealers. Zuffelato landed Boston schoolboy stars Bob Carrington, who was drafted by the Detroit Pistons, and Will Morrison.
News Item: Alton Byrd on way to setting assist record.
Columbia's 5 ft. 8 in. sophomore guard already has 69 assists after seven games, and is well on the way to eclipsing the Lion assist record of 140 set by Elliot Wolfe. In the Lions' first five games of the season he had 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, and 9 assists in that order.
News Item: Ron Cerrudo wins Golf Digest Magazine's "Hypnotic Trance Trophy."
Cerrudo finished number 100 in 1976 tour winnings after taking a series of hypnosis lessons to increase his concentration. Cerrudo earned $21,436 after placing 130th on the money list in 1975 with $9363.
News Item: Beanpot Basketball Tournament cancelled. The Basketball counterpart of college hockey's Beanpot tourney has died a quiet death. Harvard nabbed the tourney crown last season after beating B.C., but the four-team event was never a crowd pleaser or a winning proposition financially.
That about exhausts the current stockpile of information. For those of you journeying to New York City over intersession, be sure to catch the Harvard-Columbia basketball game on February 5 at 116th Street and Broadway. For those of you staying in Cambridge, tune into the hockey-basketball doubleheader on WHRB, as Jay Pearlman and yours truly will be on the airwaves for the donnybrook at Columbia.
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