At the Amateur Athletic Union's 88th annual convention last week in New Orleans one of the priorities was to establish better conditions for the 1976 Trials, which will be in Eugene next June, and it is good to report that the AAU can do some things right. Thanks primarily to the efforts of Dr. Leroy Walker and Pat Rico, who head the men's and women's track and field committees respectively, the USOC has agreed to pay the athletes' transportation costs to the Trials. Living expenses at Eugene will come from gate receipts. Even so, there still may not be sufficient funds for all who meet the Olympic qualifying standards, but that apparently is not a deterrent. "We thought of limiting the fields in order to save money," Dr. Walker says, "but we felt it would not be fair. If we get 60 sprinters who qualify, we want all of them to go to Eugene. If we need more money, we'll just have to find more money." In events in which few, if any, American athletes are likely to meet the standards—as in the women's shot put—a minimum of 12 will be invited to compete.
Last chance to qualify will be in the 1976 AAU championships at UCLA a week before the Trials. For the first time the men's and women's championships will be conducted jointly, as will the Trials themselves. "The women need to be exposed to large crowds, to quality facilities and expertise," says Pat Rico. "In 1972 we had the women's Trials at a high school in Frederick, Md., and only a couple of thousand spectators came."
BIG RED LIVES
Remember Big Red, the mascot pig of the Cooper City ( Fla.) High School football team whose big moment was to come at the end of the season when she was to become the main course at the team's barbecue? There was such a protest over Red's intended fate (SCORE-CARD, Oct. 20) that school officials finally moved to spare the suddenly famous sow. Last week at the barbecue Big Red was there, alive, and two other pigs of lesser celebrity were the main course.
And the future? "The principal of Pompano Beach High has some boar hogs," says Cooper City High Principal Donald Linton, "and we're going to mate Big Red and produce some little Reds." Adds the principal, sighing, "I still can't believe a pig can get this much publicity."