After their first meeting, Bob Hope, the publicist for the Atlanta Braves, sensed that 20-year-old Bob Horner would generate some excitement. On June 6 the Braves, who had first pick in the free-agent draft, chose Horner, a slugging junior infielder from Arizona State, and 10 days later—a week after Horner made the final out against victorious USC in the College World Series—Horner was to play third base for Atlanta in a game against Pittsburgh. So Hope met Horner in a corner of the Braves' clubhouse "to find out some of the little quirks about him."
"How long have you wanted to be a big league ballplayer?" asked Hope.
"Since I was four."
"What do you like to watch on television?"
"I don't watch TV. Only baseball games."
"How about books? What's your favorite?"
"I don't really read many books."
"Movies? Who's your favorite movie star?"
"Oh, I don't know. Maybe John Wayne."
That was all Hope could take. " John Wayne!" he recalled later with horror on his face. "Can you believe that? I expected him to say John Travolta, Woody Allen, anybody. He's got to be the only 20-year-old in America who likes John Wayne. You know what that kid is? He's a baseball player. And that's it."