SI Vault
Edited by Jack McCallum
April 11, 1994
Who's Minding the Net?
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April 11, 1994


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Yeah, right, like heat waves off the hoods of a few thousand official Olympic vehicles stuck in Hub traffic.

"The summer Olympics in Boston would be like no others," continues the study.

Now, that we agree with.

It's Not Miller Time—I

Until last weekend the media spotlight had no trouble finding Cheryl Miller, the former Southern Cal basketball star who's currently coaching the Women of Troy. But Miller, the 1983 and '84 Final Four MVP who this season guided USC to the regional finals after stepping in for Marianne Stanley last fall, was nowhere to be found at the Women's Basketball Coaches Association convention at the women's Final Four in Richmond. Though she would have been expected to present the Player of the Year award to USC center Lisa Leslie, Miller stayed away, recovering from what she said was a case of walking pneumonia. It's not certain, however, that illness was the whole story.

After taking a job that several other coaches had turned down as a show of support for Stanley, whose contract had not been renewed when she demanded a salary commensurate with that of men's coach George Raveling, Miller has had a bumpy first season on the bench. Some USC players, including Leslie, who dedicated her Player of the Year award to Stanley, remained upset by the firing. According to associate head coach Fred Williams, no coach sent scouting videos to Southern Cal, a common courtesy among college coaches. And reportedly only Leon Barmore, the coach of NCAA runner-up Louisiana Tech, sent a congratulatory note when Miller got the job.

Is Miller also being snubbed because she retains much of the cockiness that turned off some coaches when she was a player? After the Women of Troy lost to Stanford by 30 points in February, Miller announced that Southern Cal "would not lose again." Then, after USC lost to Barmore's Lady Techsters in the Mideast regional final, she said she would have to "wait and see" about going to Richmond to mingle with her colleagues because she had "a lot of yard work to do." Obviously, tact still isn't Miller's strong point.

There are those who see gender inequity in the collective cold shoulder Miller is getting from coaches, including those who are women. Would people be so put off by Miller if she were a man? "Just look at Reggie," said Miller recently, referring to her Indiana Pacer brother, one of the NBA's premier trash talkers. "He's a millionaire for being a jerk."

It's Not Miller Time—II

"Baseball and beer," said Dennis O'Malley, the president of Halo Distributing in San Antonio, a couple of weeks ago as he dangled $1 million of Miller Brewing Company money in front of the local citizenry. "You pretty much can't say one without the other."

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