24 Hours of Le Mans
If you can drive 24 consecutive hours without having someone ask, "Are we there yet?" or passing a Stuckey's, God bless you. (Even just sitting through the 10 hours of the race that will be telecast today and tomorrow will display uncommon perseverance—or inertia.) The most intriguing entry in this year's Vingt-Quatre Heures du Mans is 57-year-old Mario Andretti, who has won the Daytona 500 (1967), the Indianapolis 500 ('69) and the Formula One world championship (78). At Le Mans, Andretti will be driving a Porsche Courage C36 as he seeks to become the first man to complete the sport's unofficial Grand Slam.
SPEED VISION, 9:30 AM; SUNDAY 7 AM
The last time the U.S. Open finished on a par-3 18th hole, as it will on the Blue Course at Congressional in Bethesda, Md., was in 1909 at the now defunct Englewood ( N.J.) Golf Club. That was 66-plus years before Masters champion and this year's pre-Open favorite, Tiger Woods (left), was born. What will the leaders see before them as they approach the 190-yard 18th during today's third and tomorrow's final round? A steep bank fronting the green that has been "bikini waxed" to a precarious half inch and descending to a scenic pond (also known as a water hazard)—and a gallery of 20,000 fans. In other words, a one-shot opportunity to test one's Congressional mettle.
NBC, SATURDAY AND SUNDAY, 12:30 PM
Oscar De La Hoya vs. David Kamau
Two questions loom as De La Hoya (left) prepares to defend his unblemished (24-0) pro record and WBC welterweight title against the Kenyan-born Kamau inside the Alamodome. One, does the Golden Boy's recent hiring of trainer Emanuel Steward, the former cornerman for Thomas (Hit Man) Hearns, augur a more aggressive approach for De La La Hoya than he look in his decision over Pernell Whitaker in April? Yes. Two—and Larry Merchant, you know the answer—is there a good mariachi band to be found in San Antonio? �S�! The slick Kamau, whose only loss in 29 fights was to Mexican folk hero Julio C�sar Ch�vez, may find himself in the Davy Crockett role. Proposed rematch slogan: Remember the Alamodome!
HBO, 9:30 PM
Cubs at White Sox; Mets at Yankees
What does this de facto interleague doubleheader represent to the fans in Chicago and New York? The El and Subway Series, respectively, for which they've longed. What does it mean to the players of the visiting Cubs and Mets? Traffic. The Mets' team bus had better be equipped with an E-Z Pass tag should it attempt to cross the Triborough Bridge at rush hour. At week's end the record of the faceless Mets was only one game worse than that of wunderkind shortstop Derek Jeter (below) and the World Series champs. Meanwhile, the Cubs, who last played the White Sox in the 1906 Fall Classic (and lost), had rebounded from their 0-14 start to stand at 24-37—within five games of the more celebrated South Side sluggers.
WGN, 4 PM;FX, 7:30 PM
If amoral superagent Arliss Michaels had worked at the same agency that canned Jerry Maguire, he would have schemed to leverage the goldfish from Maguire while negotiating a merger with Maguire's ex-girlfriend. As portrayed by Robert Wuhl, the show's creator, Arliss is the ultimate "How can you help me? player rep. In this sophomore-season premiere, marital and player-agent fidelity are compromised after a baseball client (Brad Henke) confides—while receiving a lap dance at a strip club—that he believes his wife is unfaithful. Real-life athletes, such as the Oakland Raiders' Desmond Howard (above, left, with Wuhl), show up to lend verisimilitude.
HBO, 11 PM