Names In The Game
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ A national championship and Big East titles are not the only things Connecticut coaches Geno Auriemma and Jim Calhoun have to show for their work.
Hefty pay raises are also on the way.
The university’s Board of Trustees on Friday approved a four-year contract for Auriemma, coach of the national champion women’s team, that will increase his overall compensation from $96,236 to $170,000 annually.
The new four-year deal for Calhoun, the men’s head basketball coach, calls for a hike in pay from $301,864 to $335,978 per year.
That is nearly five times the salary paid to Gov. John G. Rowland and $170,000 more than university President Harry Hartley receives.
In a statement released after their vote, trustees called the pay raises justified based on the coaches’ ``high quality of achievement and accomplishment.″
The women’s basketball team finished the season undefeated at 35-0, beating Tennessee for the NCAA championship.
The men’s team finished the season 32-4. They won their second consecutive Big East regular-season title and advanced to the regional finals of the NCAA basketball tournament.
Auriemma said the 77 percent pay hike is not out of line.
``To me, if I was a professor at the University of Connecticut, and I had been here for 10 years, and had done what we have done ... that would probably be the range I would be in anyway,″ Auriemma told Hartford television station WFSB.
National player of the year Rebecca Lobo said her former coach is getting what he deserves.
``It probably is a lot of money to spend on a coach,″ Lobo said. ``But I think the way (fans) felt after we won the national championship, I don’t know if you can put a dollar value on that. He made a lot of people feel pretty good about themselves.″
Tennessee head coach Pat Summitt, who heads one of the nation’s most successful women’s programs, said Auriemma has built a program at Connecticut that has helped women’s basketball gain respect.
``There is no question that they brought tremendous recognition to the whole state, and it’s good to see,″ Summitt said. ``It’s good for women’s basketball.″
BELTON, Mo. (AP) _ Spectators for the first round of the VFW Seniors Championship did a double take Friday when they realized former baseball star George Brett was caddying for Larry Ziegler.
``I wish I could have played as well as he caddied,″ said Ziegler, an old friend of the Kansas City Royals’ three-time batting champion. Ziegler shot a 1-over 71 on the Loch Lloyd course and trailed early leader Buddy Allin by eight strokes.
``We had a deal,″ said Brett, who is now a vice president for the Royals. ``If he shot a 68 or better, I’d be back. It looks like I’ll just be a spectator for the next two days. But that’s OK. I don’t think my back could take it.″
Ziegler, a non-winner on the seniors tour this year, became friends with Brett in 1976.
``It was kind of funny watching the reaction of the gallery when they recognized who my caddy was,″ he said. ``But it was not a distraction. George is a good golfer. He knows what to do on a golf course″
Brett, a 5-handicapper, admitted the hot, muggy weather and the heavy bag taxed his 42-year-old body.
``He didn’t tell me he carried bowling balls in his golf bag,″ Brett said. ``I did OK on the front nine.″
``On the front nine, he stood tall,″ Ziegler said. ``On the back nine, he was bending over a little.″
PICKERING, Ontario (AP) _ Doug Gilmour wore the wrong socks, but he got the right girl.
The Toronto Maple Leafs’ captain and Amy Cable, a model and former Maple Leaf Gardens usherette, were married Friday afternoon in a ceremony at a golf club.
The bridegroom, 32, sported a charcoal-colored tuxedo and new haircut for the festivities.
``But somehow I got the wrong socks,″ he divulged during the reception, laughing and hoisting a pant leg to reveal a short blue sock.
Gilmour’s daughter from a previous marriage, Madison, was the flower girl.
David Gilmour stood up for his younger brother while the hockey star’s brother-in-law, Neil Belland, acted as the lone usher.
More than 200 guests endured muggy conditions inside the makeshift chapel.
``He looks sensational, don’t he,″ whispered late-arriving hockey commentator Don Cherry from the back of the wedding tent. ``And look at Sharon Stone there. That’s what I call her. Isn’t she something.″
Cherry’s gift was a picture of his dog Blue with a gold dog tag around the neck.
``That’s what I gave (Islanders center) Kirk Muller for his wedding present, so I’d better treat them the same,″ Cherry said.
Among those in attendance were NHL players Muller, Wendel Clark, Tie Domi, Dave Ellett, Bill Berg and Todd Gill, Leafs general manager Cliff Fletcher, and Toronto Argonauts running back Mike Clemons.