AN OWNER'S OWNER
All owners in sports these days seem to have attended the same school, wherein they studied a form of three-button unctuousness and mealymouthed double-talk. No graduate may ever find anything wrong with sport, and if he does not adhere closely to the school's dictates, he must turn in his red-white-and-blue blazer to the dean.
One of the fundamental teachings of the school is that when an owner fires a coach or manager he must make the following statement: "It really isn't old Joe's fault that the team is losing, but we have agreed that at this time a change might be in the best interests of both of us."
Last week we marveled at the forthright statement of Bud Adams, the owner of the Houston Oilers of the American Football League, when he fired his coach, Lou Rymkus. Adams said, "Our decision is based on a conclusion that the material on hand has not been used to its fullest potential." In other words, Rymkus hasn't been doing a good job. Turn in your blazer, Adams.
THE INSIDE TRACK
?Major league officials have sent 216 baseballs (1961 models) to a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor for testing. Comparisons will be made with similar tests run in 1956.
?Fight fans planning to attend the December 4 heavyweight championship fight between Floyd Patterson and Tom McNeeley in Toronto will have trouble booking hotel rooms. Reason: December 2 is Grey Cup Day in Toronto, when the Canadian pro football championship is decided. Most hotels are already booked to capacity.
?New markings near the face-off circles in the National Hockey League are to stop skaters from moving in on opponents before the referee drops the puck. Cross marks make it mandatory for skaters to hold position, and insure a clean draw.
WINNER ON THE SIDELINES
The world champion sports car racer is in a peculiar position. He doesn't have a car to race. Phil Hill won the championship in a race marred by the death of fellow Ferrari teammate, Count Wolfgang von Trips, and 15 others at Monza last month. Since then, Hill has had to pass up all races because Ferrari has declined to race. "Their racing department is closed," Hill said. "The cars are in pieces. Why? Maybe it's because of the Von Trips thing, but I'm not sure. Anyway, they don't have to give me any reason for it."