In a Moscow hospital after an extended illness, Valery Brumel, 60, the last Olympic high jumping champion to use the straddle style (above). After winning a surprise silver at the 1960 Rome Olympics at age 18, the Siberian-born Brumel dominated his event for the next four years. He won gold in Tokyo in '64 and raised the outdoor world record six times; his 7'�" stood for eight years. On Oct. 4, 1965, Brumel shattered his right shin and ankle in a motorcycle accident. He spent three years in a cast, underwent more than 25 operations and never returned to international competition. After retiring from track he published a novel and wrote a play and an opera libretto, all based on his life.
For 10 days by Major League Baseball, umpire Bruce Froemming, for calling umpiring administrator Cathy Davis a "stupid Jew bitch." Froemming, 63, a 32-year veteran who in a 1995 SI poll of pitchers, catchers and managers was voted the National League ump they'd least like to see behind the plate in a crucial postseason game, was to call the two-game season-opening series between the A's and the Mariners in Tokyo on March 25-26. Froemming apologized for the remark, which he left on Davis's voice mail after he became upset about his travel arrangements to Tokyo. He will be replaced in Japan by Steve Rippley.
By Miller Lite, a coupon for a free six-pack to every fan of legal drinking age in attendance at the Feb. 16 Daytona 500 if Rusty Wallace, who drives a Miller Lite car, wins the race. Daytona seats 168,000. Wallace has 54 career Winston Cup victories but has not won the Daytona 500 in 20 starts. "The fans will be behind me," Wallace says. "Who wouldn't want to receive free Miller Lite?"
By Jeremy Bloom, a gold medal in the dual moguls event at the World Freestyle Championships in Deer Valley, Utah. Bloom, the Colorado wide receiver and punt returner who is skiing without sponsorship in order to keep his NCAA eligibility intact, also won silver in the individual moguls event. Bloom wore a gold helmet with his school's buffalo logo over each ear and earned his first world title despite breaking a ski during the first round of the dual moguls. "I got back into the starting area with 10 minutes until the next run and I realized my ski was just about broken in half," Bloom told SI. U.S. coaches rushed a replacement to him from the bottom of the hill, and he strapped it on with one minute to go before his next run.
From the Lincoln Journal Star, Nebraska's second-largest newspaper, certain Native American nicknames and symbols in sports. The Washington Redskins will be called simply Washington, and alternative graphics will replace caricatures such as Chief Wahoo of the Indians. The move came after a plea by the Native American Journalists Association. Several papers, including Minnesota's Star Tribune and The Kansas City Star, have also stopped using such names and symbols.