"That was one of the biggest crowds ever to see a collegiate wrestling meet," says Nichols. "I knew if Chris went out and finished Washek in the first period there would be a lot of disenchanted fans. So he tried out some holds and carried the match into the third period."
The crowd's reaction pleased Taylor, who doubts that he will try for a gold in the 1976 Olympics. "Verne Gagne, the pro wrestling promoter, has been waving $60,000 and $70,000 offers under my nose," he says. "With that kind of money possible, I don't think I can afford to stay poor to compete in an Olympics that is more than three years away."
THE WHOLE THING
The Soviet Union's national hockey team, which knocked off American teams one after the other during its recent tour of the U.S., awed those who came in close contact with it—and not just for the strength and precision with which the Russians played.
"The one thing they can do as well as they play hockey is eat," said Mike Radakovich, the U.S. official who escorted the Russians on their tour. A typical lunch for 20 people, this one ordered in San Diego, consisted of three huge trays of oranges, apples, bananas, strawberries, grapes and other fruits; three more trays of cucumbers, tomatoes, radishes, olives, pickles and other vegetables: tomato soup, filet mignon, potatoes, onion rings, bread, honey and ice cream. A bottle of catsup was provided for every two players. Each had a pitcher of orange juice, milk or tea, as well as a quart bottle of Coca-Cola, which the players apparently love.
"They eat five hours before a game," Radakovich reported, "and they polish off everything."
A MATTER OF METERS
The Marin Golf Club near San Francisco, looking ahead to the metric age, is installing supplemental markers at each tee to show the distance to the green in meters. "When the U.S. finally converts to meters," says pro Wayne Wallick, "we plan to delete the yardage figures."
That's all very well, but Wallick and the Marin Club should not sit back thinking the job is done. There are other conversion problems to be solved. After all, saying "I have trouble with 1.22-meter putts" does not have quite the ring of "I still can't sink those damned four-footers."