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April 05, 1965
FANS ARE FOR FLEECING
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April 05, 1965

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FANS ARE FOR FLEECING

Fans of the Chicago Black Hawks have a low regard for Owners Arthur Wirtz and Jim Norris. They call them the Chicken Hawks. Ticket-sellers at Chicago stadium have been arrested for scalping—right at the box office. A newspaper photographer had his seat sold right out from under him. Last week there was a new outburst of wrath against the Chicken Hawks. The crowds came to the final home game of the regular season chanting, " Norris is a fink," and passed out leaflets urging a boycott. In an 18-minute barrage they showered the rink with overshoes, hats, flasks, pieces of seating and toilet paper, and cheered the visiting New York Rangers to victory. Rowdyism is never defensible, but in this case the provocation was extreme.

Wirtz and Norris had just announced price lists for Stanley Cup playoff tickets. Tops would be $9 (against $6 at Montreal and Toronto and $6.50 at Detroit)—but that was just a light blow compared to the next: instead of free home TV for the road games, there would be closed-circuit telecasts at the stadium ($4 tops). In order to get their regular seats for both home games and televised games in the second series of the playoffs, season-ticket holders would have to buy both live and TV tickets for the first series. And if they try to buy only home-game or only TV tickets for the second series, they will discover they must also buy tickets to the first series.

Naturally, the Chicken Hawks will get away with it, because the league does not control admission prices and the team is in great enough demand to keep the suckers fast to the ticket lines. Since one cannot be sure the Hawks will ever be a loser again—and until some other reprisal is available—Owners Wirtz and Norris deserve the fans' wrath.

FRANK AND TOM MEET AT THE I

Frank Howard, Clemson's football coach, announced the other day that he would use the I formation this fall. What makes this an attention-grabber is that Tom Nugent of Maryland invented—or claims to have invented—the I formation when he was coaching at VMI in 1950 and has been using it ever since. And what makes that pertinent is that Howard and Nugent never miss a chance to tell the world how little they respect one another.

Howard, for instance, is all the time saying how he's going to dot Nugent's I. That is one of the kinder things he is all the time saying. But in the six games they have met, Nugent's Maryland team has won four times, last year by 34-0, and when he heard Howard was going to try the I, Nugent was ecstatic. "The I formation," he said, when he had gotten down to a clinical mood, "is so good even Howard can't spoil it."

Replied Howard in his studied back-country drawl: " Nugent has no copyright on that fo'mation. I 'spect he's copied some, too."

Would Howard admit that he borrowed the formation from Nugent?

"Hail no. I copied thet from Jim Hickey ovah at No'f Cahlina. I jest copy offa good coaches."

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