Remember the grueling eight-event Iron Man competition that the Vikings' commander in chief, Les Steckel, held at the beginning of Minnesota's training camp? The top five finishers were awarded prizes—cars, TV sets, gift certificates for sporting goods.
Well, commissioner Rozelle has now informed Viking general manager Mike Lynn that Minnesota's Iron Man stuff may have violated league rules. The question is whether the prizes are considered incentives; if so, they must be written into a player's contract.
In Sunday's 23-20 win over Minnesota, the Raiders were penalized five times for unnecessary roughness. "We could've ended up with 20 personal-foul penalties, but Coach Flores made a stupendous halftime speech," said cornerback Lester Hayes, who was flagged twice—once for punching Viking receiver Leo Lewis in the head. "Normally, your jam point is the receiver's numbers," explained Hayes, who's 6 feet. "But Lewis is an ultra-Smurf. He's only 5'3" [actually 5'8"], and his numbers are where a normal receiver's knees would be."
Sources on the 49ers are saying that if San Francisco, now 6-1, wins the Super Bowl this January, Bill Walsh will quit as coach to devote all his energies to his job as the Niners' president.
Walsh offers only a halfhearted denial. "The job I have now is all-inclusive," says Walsh, 52, in his sixth year as 49er head coach and his 30th year of coaching. "I am el presidents and I do have a lot of administrative duties. Sometimes, that's really expecting too much of myself.
"I'd like to take a year off, but as coach, I can't. With double duties, I can't even take the off-season off. Right now I'm at work two or three nights a week. I travel every other weekend, and it seems like we're always on the East Coast, so I'm away from home two days each week. We might be a better organization if I only worried about the duties as president. I'm not thinking about quitting. I still think there are challenges ahead in coaching. But I am tired."
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