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But Rumic was suddenly confused. Why was Lopez running the ball back? Interceptions on conversions are blown dead. Ever the considerate coach, Rumic corralled Lopez at the Rincon 40 and dragged him off the field. It was only then that someone told Rumic he had prevented one of his players from scoring. Everyone felt bad for Rumic, even the officials, who didn't bother penalizing him.
After the game, won 26-12 by Rincon, Rumic was embarrassed but not tongue-tied. "I told my wife I made the tackle to prevent us from running up the score," he said.
According to the L.A. grapevine, celebrated ladies' man Jerry Buss and frequent companion Karen Demel could be announcing their engagement any day now. But while Buss may be taking himself out of circulation, he seems to have no such plans for his money. The man who paid Jack Kent Cooke $67.5 million in 1979 for the Los Angeles Lakers and Kings, The Forum and a 13,000-acre cattle ranch, recently laid out $5.4 million for Pickfair, the fabled estate of Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks. He also acknowledges that he'd like to help launch a pro tennis league along the lines of World Team Tennis, which he was virtually bankrolling before it went under in 1978.
Buss emphasizes that a new team-tennis circuit would be formed only if other investors were willing to join him in the venture. One report says that in addition to salaries and prize money for team performances, the new circuit would pay prize money for individual performances, something not offered by WTT. The league Buss has in mind would be confined at first to Western cities and would be called National Team Tennis. This name supposedly was chosen when it was realized that leagues whose names contain the word "world" have a way of folding ( World Team Tennis, World Football League, World Hockey Association), while those with "national" in their names ( National League, NFL, NBA, NHL) survive.
As though all this weren't enough, the freewheeling Buss has also given Marcel Dionne a contract providing the Kings' star with $600,000 a year over six years, making him the highest-paid player in NHL history. Far from flinching at such gaudy salaries, Buss recently told the Los Angeles Stock Exchange Club, "Athletes are entertainers, so if a rock star makes $5 million, who's to say athletes shouldn't make more?" Although his fellow owners probably wish he'd hush up on the subject, Buss believes that salaries of sports superstars may well rise to the $5 million range, with teams still turning a profit. Pay TV would help make this possible. For example, by putting games on pay TV and charging, say, 20� a TV set, the Lakers could net $70,000 a game, which is about half of what they take in from an average gate.
Downright heretical is Buss' suggestion that skyrocketing salaries won't necessarily result in higher ticket prices. Because of pay TV, he says, just the opposite will happen. "I think stadiums will eventually become TV studios," says Buss. "Spectators may get in for $1 or so."
Alydar became a legend—and a big favorite of the fans—by finishing second in each leg of the 1978 Triple Crown. Well, when it comes to being a runner-up, a 3-year-old thoroughbred named Full Quid has outdone the legend by coming in second in his last 10 races.
Though some horseplayers might find it significant that Full Quid's best buddy and stablemate is a goat, most railbirds have taken to him. "The public has grown to love Full Quid," says the horse's trainer, William (Red) Terrill. "Instead of booing him, they holler things like 'Right on, Full Quid, you're doing your thing.' " And his thing, to be sure, is a thing of joy to his backers. Any bettor prescient enough to have made a $2 place wager on the first of Full Quid's 10 races and to have parlayed the winnings would now be nearly $1,800 ahead.