At age 86, Lynn Chandnois (above), whose combination of size, speed and shiftiness with the Steelers in the 1950s made him one of the most dangerous kick returners in NFL history. Chandnois spent two years in the Naval Air Corps during World War II before enrolling in '46 at age 21 at Michigan State, where he set school records that still stand of 20 career interceptions for 384 yards. Selected eighth overall in the '50 draft, the 6'2", 198-pound running back, safety and return man would spend seven seasons in Pittsburgh, averaging 29.6 yards on kickoff returns—a career mark exceeded only by Gale Sayers's 30.6—before retiring following the '56 season.
To a group of NFL players on Monday by U.S. District Judge Susan Nelson, a motion for a preliminary injunction in the ongoing labor dispute that could lift, temporarily, the lockout the owners instituted on March 11. The ruling followed a request on April 6 by a collection of players (including Tom Brady and Peyton Manning) that the lockout be halted, as well as court-mandated mediation before a federal magistrate. Nelson cited the plaintiffs' "strong showing that [the lockout] is ... inflicting ... irreparable harm upon [players]." The NFL promised to seek a stay until they can file an appeal. If denied, the league will have to reopen its doors to players and decide whether to resort to its previous collective bargaining agreement.
At age 81 of cancer, Jess Jackson, who broke new ground as a vintner and thoroughbred racehorse owner. A successful lawyer in the 1970s, Jackson purchased an 80-acre pear and walnut farm in Lakeport, Calif., which he developed into one of the nation's most successful wineries—Kendall-Jackson Estates. Beginning in 2003, Jackson began pouring his assets into thoroughbred racing, breaking through with his purchase in '07 of the controlling interest in Curlin, who would go on to win that year's Preakness Stakes and Breeders' Cup Classic, and the '08 Dubai World Cup. In '09, Jackson bought Rachel Alexandra, who later that year would become the first filly to win the Preakness in 84 years. Between the two, Curlin and Rachel Alexandra represent the Horse of the Year winners from '07 to '09; and Curlin is North America's alltime leading earner, with $10,501,800 to his credit.
At age 57 of cancer, Grete Waitz of Norway, who set the women's marathon world record four times and established credibility for women in long-distance running through her commanding performances. Originally a middle-distance runner who had set two world records in the 3,000 meters, Waitz was invited in 1978 to the New York City Marathon as a rabbit intended to set an aggressive pace for the favorites. At that point Waitz had never competed in a race longer than 10 miles. Nonetheless, she crushed the field of nearly 1,000 women (and cruised past 7,900 men, ending up 105th overall) to set a women's world record of 2:32:30, more than two minutes faster than the previous mark. That win, the first of nine in New York (including '83, above), kicked off a marathon career that would include a gold medal in the '83 world championships and an Olympic silver in '84.
By the NCAA of being dishonest in withholding information during an investigation into several of his players' activities, Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel, who was alerted on Monday that he may have committed major violations. The eight-page notice of allegations, which addresses Tressel's attempts to cover up his knowledge of benefits players received from selling memorabilia, casts a cloud over the future of both the coach, who won a BCS title with OSU in '02, and his program. In the indictment, Tressel is alleged to have failed to act with honesty and integrity during the investigation, allowed ineligible players to participate in games, and lied on a compliance form stating that he had no knowledge of NCAA violations. The details of the indictment were revealed last month after a school investigation, but the NCAA's latest action made clear that punishment could be severe and come quickly. The school goes before the infractions committee on Aug. 12.