The IHSA was unmoved, despite evidence that several other schools used jayvee wrestlers in a fifth tournament. So Mount Carmel went to court. In a decision subsequently upheld by two higher tribunals, circuit court judge Margaret McBride found the IHSA guilty of "arbitrary and capricious" conduct and ordered it to include Mount Carmel in the state tournament.
The IHSA's reaction? It suspended, and ultimately canceled, the tournament rather than let Mount Carmel participate. Wrestlers who had trained and competed all season were left singleted up with no place to go. Teams arrived at regional sites to find notes on gym doors announcing the event had been called off; officials at one site, unaware of the ruling, went ahead with matches that won't count.
A circuit court ruling, an appellate decision and a state supreme court judgment makes a three count, and in our book that's a pin. But the IHSA has chosen to flout the referee's call. As Father Joseph Atcher, the principal at Mount Carmel, says, "[The IHSA] placed hundreds of hardworking young men in a state of limbo because the highest court in Illinois said [its] actions were wrong."
Just seconds before post time for the sixth race at Laurel Park on Feb. 20, a track patron placed a $72 bet with a pari-mutuel clerk—only to have it canceled when the clerk inadvertently punched out a ticket worth $738 that the bettor didn't want to pay for. Unable to correct his error in time, the clerk, under track rules, had to assume the obligation for the ticket, a triple box combination that included a 40-1 nag named Nun Bee Wiser.
Nun Bee Luckier is more like it. When Nun Bee Wiser won the race, and the other horses in the triple finished second and third, the once beleaguered clerk found himself with a ticket worth $22,238.40. "After winning he quietly went back to his window and worked through the rest of his shift," says Mary Zambreny, an assistant pari-mutuel manager at Laurel. "I guess he figured he could afford any future mistakes."
Chucking the J
In our recent report on the resurgence of Pac-10 basketball (Jan. 16), we attributed the invention of the jump shot to Hank Luisetti, the Hall of Famer and former Stanford great. Luisetti's great contribution to the game was a leaping, one-hander—also known as the Stab—that he brought east with his much celebrated visit to Madison Square Garden in 1936. But basketball historians still debate who deserves credit for first shooting the jump shot as we know it today, that is, leaping off both feet at the same time, squaring one's shoulders to the basket and letting fly from over the head. Many credit Kenny Sailors, the guard who played at Wyoming between '41-43 and '45-46. Sailors developed his J in his backyard, out of necessity, while playing against an older, taller brother. At roughly the same time, others tinkered with similar shots: Murray State's Joe Fulks and North Georgia's Garland Pinholster, to name two.
To that list we add someone even the most pebble-grained hoophead probably hasn't heard of before. Early in his senior season at Penn in 1938, Chuck Diven Jr., an erstwhile set-shooter, began jumping before releasing. At 5'8", Diven developed this technique for the same reason Sailors did. Yet Diven's contribution went largely unnoticed until last year when two grandchildren came across an old clipping from The Daily Pennsylvanian reading, "The Quicker had discovered a new shot for his repertoire, a leaping, two-handed overhead try...."
Today Diven, 78 and living in Melbourne, Fla., confines his shot-taking to the golf course—with both feet firmly on the ground, he assures us. "I've never made any claim to being the inventor of the jump shot," he says. "Nor do I intend to. Because, to tell you the truth, I don't recall ever making one."