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TROUBLE AT THE SUMMIT
Heavyweight Champion Floyd Patterson's announcement that he intends to fight Sonny Liston this summer was made before his advisers had won consent to what they regard as a most important clause. Patterson's negotiators are insisting on a firm return-bout guarantee if he should lose—the kind of agreement that enabled him to win back. the title from Ingemar Johansson. They want Liston to put $150,000 (which he doesn't have) in escrow before the signing and they want an additional healthy sum tied up from Liston's purse at the signing.
In addition, Liston is going through the throes of corporate reorganization intended to erase the stain of Gangster Blinky Palermo's participation in his career. A new manager is being readied. When this manager is approved by the Pennsylvania boxing commission, plans are to cut up Sonny this way: Liston is to get 50% of his purses less expenses; Jack Nilon (new manager) 33?; Lawyer Mort Witkin (also Blinky's lawyer on occasion) 10%; and Trainer Willie Reddish 6?%. As for Georgie Katz, the original all-is-aboveboard manager, to whom Liston no longer speaks, his 10% is to come off the top until his contract expires.
When the financial finagling is finished it will be a pleasure to contemplate the fight, the most attractive heavyweight title match since the days of Joe Louis. The only thing we don't like about it is a persistent suspicion that Blinky Palermo, now at large on $100,000 bail from his federal conspiracy conviction, will somehow manage to profit from it.
UCLA Football Coach Bill Barnes is junking the single wing and will go exclusively with the T formation next season, thus ending the long reign of the "glory system" inaugurated by the late Red Sanders 14 years ago. Lack of good tailbacks, the key to the successful single wing, is the reason offered by Barnes for the switch. "We have passers and we have runners," Assistant Coach Dan Peterson said, "but damn few who can do both."
Barnes is merely following a pattern. One by one, the good teams have dropped the old-fashioned single-wing offense for the slicker T. Old-fashioned or no, we're sorry to see it go, especially from a team that produced such as Kenny Washington and Jackie Robinson. And we're going to miss those games between teams using entirely different offenses. At least the single wing still survives at Tennessee, where General Neyland popularized it and would, presumably, defend it with his life.
THAT'S ALL THERE IS
Some of the football prestige of the University of Maryland came from the feats of the brothers Modzelewski, known as Big Mo and Little Mo. Big Mo (Ed) was an All-America fullback and Little Mo (Dick) made All-America as a tackle, then went on to the New York Giants.
Now there is another Modzelewski brother in football, though not at Maryland. This one, Eugene Daniel Modzelewski, chose New Mexico State University because, as he put it: "If I went to Maryland I'd be following two All-America brothers. At New Mexico State I'm just another guy and I'll be making it on my own."