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Names In The Game

July 10, 1993

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) _ Baseball fans donning replicas of the wool flannel uniforms worn by Negro League players are resurrecting the memories of the league and its greats like Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson and Cool Papa Bell.

Bo Jackson, Spike Lee, and former Sex Pistols frontman Johnny Lydon have been seen wearing the uniforms, featuring teams such as the Chicago American Giants and the Birmingham Black Barons.

Some aficionados say the $150 jerseys trivialize the struggle of black baseball players, while others think the league’s surging popularity is an opportunity to educate.

″I hate it ’cause it’s come too late,″ said Elwood Parsons, 82, who scouted black players for major league teams. ″If we’d have had that when we were struggling ... If we would have had something like that in the ’40s, it would have been a godsend.″

Rap Hankins, owner of Hankins Cultural Connections, said he hopes people gain a more complete understanding of the national pastime as they flip through the jerseys and hats he sells.

When the majors began taking black players, Parsons said, an entire subculture died.

″It killed me,″ Parsons said. ″I had thought I had it made. See, it hurt a lot of black businesses. The hotels and motels we had that were decent, they had to quit. With integration we advanced and we retreated.″


TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - A basketball referee who has officiated Pacific-10 Conference games for two decades has lost his job, apparently over comments he made to the Tucson Citizen.

The newspaper said Tom Harrington was fired.

Pac-10 commissioner Tom Hansen confirmed that Harrington’s contract wasn’t renewed. Hansen said ″there were several reasons″ but wouldn’t cite any of them.

Harrington, who officiated in the last two NCAA championship games, still can work games in other conferences.

The Citizen said Harrington received a letter of reprimand in May from the Pac-10 supervisor of officials, Booker Turner, saying he had violated a conference rule barring game officials from commenting to the media on officials or officiating of a conference game.

The Citizen in a story profilinfg Harrington in March quoted him as saying the conference was bringing in new officials and that ″there are a lot of other guys that should be weeded out.″

″Some of our guys think they are so damned important because they are officials. If that’s the deal, they’ve lost sight of why they’re there,″ he was quoted as saying.

Harrington said, ″It really hurts that after 20 years in the Pac-10 I’m being treated like this,″ he said.


PHOENIX (AP) - Jimmy Connors and Bjorn Borg were opponents again.

Only this time, it was a 41-year-old Connors against a 37-year old Borg - and it was all Connors.

Connors beat Borg 6-1 in singles in a World Team Tennis competition on Friday night in which the Phoenix Smash beat the Los Angeles Strings 27-18.

The biggest crowd ever to see the Smash at home, 7,693, turned out.

Borg, in the third year of a comeback bid after spending nine years away from the sport, held serve in the opening game but quickly fell victim to a quick-footed and animated opponent.

Connors closed out the match with a forehand that kissed off the net and grazed Borg’s forehead as it flew by.

The 22-minute set was the shortest of the night but was obviously the one the big crowd had come to see.


BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) - Soccer star Diego Maradona says a movie is being made about his life in which he will reveal ″the whole truth″ about his use of illegal drugs.

In a TV interview late Friday, Maradona said the film ″will tell the whole truth about the time I was jailed for using drugs, who threw me to the lions, who threw me to the dogs, the truth that everybody is hiding.″

Maradona was arrested with two friends in a Buenos Aires apartment in April, 1991. Police said the three were drugged.

He was released on bail and sentenced to undergo treatment for drug abuse under court supervision. He is still under treatment.

The film will be directed by his friend, Fito Paez, a rock singer and songwriter.

Maradona said ″the film will probably create problems for me because it will tell about others who used and continue to use drugs. I’ll tell the whole truth about me to the Argentines.″

He did not reveal any further details about the film.

Maradona returned to Argentina last June after a season playing in Spain.


BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Kim Shasby wasn’t worried about the heat wave in Buffalo. She was too busy trying to avoid the floods in Iowa.

Shasby, a member of the U.S. tennis team at the World University Games, nearly didn’t make it to the competition because of the raging floods back home. She tried to leave her North Liberty, Iowa, home during the week, only to find the family driveway underwater.

So Shasby put on waders, slung her equipment bag over her shoulders and hiked 2 1/2 miles through a cornfield and down a dirt road. A friend was waiting for her at one of the state’s only open highways to drive her to the airport.

She missed her original flight but, after changing into dry clothes, made a later flight and a connection to Buffalo. Shasby, who attends Stanford, is scheduled to play in mixed doubles.

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