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"And so we argue and we compromise,
and realize that nothing's ever changed.
For all our mutual experience,
our separate conclusions are the same.
Now we are forced to recognize our
Our reason co-exists with out insanity.
And though we choose between reality
and madness . . .
It's either sadness or euphoria."
If there's one thing that I've learned in
the last four years, it's that it's a very
self-destructive notion for any of us to
think we can change the world. The last
thing anyone needs is a chronic case of
Each of us has a very small circle of
responsibility. If you can't handle your
own life and relate to the relatively
small number of people around you, you
might as well run off to a deserted island
and talk to the seagulls all day.
Sometimes I think journalists suffer
those grand illusions more than anyone
else. Our place, theoretically, is halfway
between the newsmakers and the
readers. Powerful? Perhaps. Respon
sible? Definitely. But in the grand
scheme of things, not any more earth
shattering than anyone else's way of life.
In my most productive moments, I felt
I wrote some significant things that
people would not have know about
otherwise, and provided just a little
insight about this ambiguous world. In
my most cynical moments, of which
there have been more than I'd like to
admit, I think journalists are an ad
vanced form of parasite. We .live our
lives from other people's actions. We
can't write about anything until someone
goes out and does something. And we too
often find ourselves three paces behind
the newsmakers trying to get them to
tell us what we want to hear. But that's
an attitude saved for the very worst of
times. And without the rough spots,
there would be no challenges in this
business of daily newspapers.
Somewhere after the tragedies of the
front page and the frivolities of the
comics lie the sports page with tragedies
and frivolities all its own.
Between the scores, play-by-play
drama, analysis and opinion lies a
definitive statement about our culture.
Sports reporting has gone far beyond
what ABC's Wide World of Sports has so
eloquently called "the thrill of victory
and the agony of defeat the human
drama of athletic competition." That in
itself is not news to anyone. The games
people play are big business from high
school to the pros. The difference bet
ween a professional contract and a
collegiate scholarship is a thin gray line.
It's all a matter of buying and selling.
And the product on the market is talent
a purely human balance of ability and
What role does the sports reporter
play? I'm constantly amused by the
prejudcies and misconceptions about us,
both in and out of the business. We are
not the toy department, the zoo, or the
dumping ground for reporters who could
not make it anywhere else on the paper.
We are not cigar-chewing Oscar
Madison types with pizza sauce jam
ming the typewriter keys. Although a
few really are over-the-hill athletes
trying to capitalize on their former
success, only those with a respectable
amount of talent last. And sports staffs
are not a menangerie of scrawny,.
weekend athletes who have a secret
passion to be coaches and players.
Although I'm convinced the novelty
has worn off, some people still insist on
making a fuss about women sport
swriters. Obviously, those miscon
ceptions bother me more than the other
ones. But if I didn't learn years ago how
to laugh them off, I would have given up
and gone to the society page to write'
about who had who over for Tuesday
Lady sportswriters, at least this one,
are not the end products of deprived
childhoods in which no one would let
them play catch with the boys. Nor do I
expect to meet scores of charming young
men by hanging around the lockerroom.
Just to set the record straight, I've
never tried to storm Joe Paterno's
lockerroom. Although the court may say
I have a right to be there, it will be a few
years before we can talk to someone who
has a tougher time dealing with our
presence than our questions.
Being the first lady sports editor of
The Daily Collegian may be considered a
step forward for feminism, but I never
felt the need to be part of the movement
and I hope I never have to.
We tend to get philosophical at
graduation, reminisce about the good
times and talk about the great ex
pectations of the future. But that's all
sentimental mental exercise to make
saying goodbye just a little bit easier.
Paul Simon and the men's gymnastics team will be out to avenge last year's
216.10-214,00 loss to injury -ridden but always tough Southern Illinois, when the
Lions host the Salukis at 7:30 tomorrow night in Rec Hall.
Lady gymnasts cautiously predict
a victory over Southern Illinois
By DARLENE HROBAK
Daily Collegian Sports Writer
If indications are correct, the Southern Illinois Salukis
should pose a challenge to the women's gymnastics team in
tomorrow's 7:30 p.m. Rec Hall meet but not too much of a
Penn State, 6-0 and ranked No. 2, is coming off last Satur
day's meet against Louisville in which it posted a nation-high
score of 142.15. The Salukis, who have scored a 136.2, own the
highest score of any team the Lady Lions have met this season.
"I don't think they will beat us, but they're the one team we
have met this year that has a chance to beat us," Penn State
head coach Judi Avener said. "If they could hit, they might be
a 140 team."
But Southern Illinois hasn't been a 140 team. It's been
burdened with about as many injury problems as Penn State
has. Notably the Salukis top gymnast, All-American Linda
Nelson, sustained a pre-season knee injury which ended her
"Southern Illinois is traditionally a strong team and
traditionally an exciting team because they pull a lot of big
tricks and they usually have a lot of talent," Judi Avener said.
"If they hit, they'll be a team to reckon with."
Penn State, however, has been a team to reckon with all
season. And according to Judi Avener the Lady Lions are "on
the mend." Pat Spisak's cast finally came off her wrist,
Margie Foster is off her crutches, Lynn Samuels may get the
go-ahead to compete this weekend and Ann Carr's sprained
ankle is slowly improving.
A definite line-up has not yet been decided for tomorrow's
meet except for Debbie Alston, Jan Anthony and Marcy Levine
in the all-around. If Samuels competes she'll do floor exercise,
if she doesn't, Lisa Ingebretsen will go all-around. Joanne
Beck is questionable for the vault and floor exercise because
her back has been troubling her. Carr decides today whether
Playoff system could be the answer to No. 1
By RICK WEBER
Daily Collegian Sports Writer
When the wire service polls disagreed
in their choice of college football's
national champion last month, it became
more apparent than ever that a
championship playoff system might be
the answer to the yearly controversy.
At least that's how the National
Collegiate Athletic Association feels.
The NCAA's seven-man Extra Events
Committee has proposed a four-team
championship playoff and recom
mended that it be adopted at next
January's NCAA convention by the 139
major football colleges that constitute
Division 1-A. To reach the 1980 con
vention floor, the plan must either be
approved by the 18-man NCAA council in
April or be placed before the convention
by a union of six major football colleges.
According to Frank Broyles, a member
of the Extra Events Committee, it is
certain to reach the floor since "all
seven members of the committee who
approved this plan will join to advance it
if the council rejects it."
If a majority of the members of
Division 1-A approve the plan next year,
the NCAA will stage_ the first cham
pionship playoff during the two weeks
after the Jan. 1 bowl games in 1981. Even
if the plan is not approved, this
represents the most progress that has
ever been made toward a playoff
system. In the past, a formal recom
mendation was never placed before the
membership to be voted on because a
feasibility committee felt there were too
many problems to be resolved. Now, the
Extra Events Committee feels it has
come up with a reasonable plan.
Under the proposed plan, all 28 teams
that participate in the 14 major college
bowls would be eligible for the playoff, A
special NCAA committee would choose
four of them after the last of the 14 bowls
had been played. A semifinal round
would be played at two neutral sites,
which would also be determined by this
committee. The title game would be
played on a neutral field the weekend
before the Super Bowl.
Broyles feels this plan will work
because it won't disrupt the bowls.
Teams would be selected by the
respective bowl committees just like
they are now. The contracts that bind
certain conference champions to a bowl
(for example, the Southeastern Con
ference champ to the Sugar Bowl) would
not be changed.
The reactions to the playoff proposal
are as mixed and varied as might be
expected on a controversial issue like
The strongest reaction was voiced by
the bowl people, who fear that the im
portance of their games would be
diminished. Although the bowl officials
aren't involved in the decision-making
process they can only lobby against
the playoff the NCAA plans to listen to
their objections. The bowls gave college
football a lot of exposure when it wasn't
the spectacle it is today, and the NCAA
"We will be meeting with the
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"Without our big tricksters Foster, Spisak and Carr
they have probably got more difficulty than we have in some
events," Avener said. "In the floor ex and vaulting, they'll
probably pull bigger tricks than we do."
However Southern Illinois coach Herb Vogel, who was one of
the pioneers of women's gymnastics, said the Salukis won't
beat Penn State. Besides the injury factor, he said the meet
against the Lady Lions will be Southern Illinois' third in five
days. It faces Ohio State today.
"What I think we can do, if we come in healthy, is not em
barrass them," he said. "Right now if we had our team at full
strength, we would probably place third or fou'rth in nationals.
We just don't have the depth of a Penn State."
The Salukis, due to internal problems, may also not have
their top gymnast, All American Cindy Moran. Vogel said with
Moran, Southern Illinois should score from 137-139, but without
her that scoring range isn't possible.
Avener, however, said her squad is a "consistent 140 team."
The Lady Lions have only scored under 140 once in its last five
,"We have moved into the phase of the season where we try to
perfect what we are doing," she added. "We're concerned with
all the little details of our routines now."
BACK FLIPS If Carr doesn't go all-around tomorrow she
won't meet the requirement that states she must compete in
four all-arounds to be eligible for national all-around com
petition. If Carr doesn't compete, her national scores could
still 'count toward the final team total. If she won the all
around, however, she Would not be able to accept the individal
medal. The Aveners have submitted a special petition asking
to exempt Carr from that requirement rule . . . Marshall
Avener said an "outstanding" performance tomorrow would
be one in which Penn State had three breaks. It had three
breaks last week . . . Cal State-Fullerton scored a 138.00 last
week, performing without some of its top gymnasts.
representatives of the bowls in a few
months to discuss the matter," Ralph
McFillen of the NCAA says. "At that
time, the bowls will be giving their
reactions and input to the playoff idea."
NCAA representatives will not be
singing sweet tunes when they hear the
bowl officials articulate • their disap
proval. The bowls are almost unanimous
in their opposition.
"We're not going to lobby against it or
get into verbal, malicious warfare with
the people who might support it," Jim
Brock, executive vice president of the
Cotton Bowl says. "But judging from the
reactions of all the bowl officials at a
meeting we had in San Francisco, I don't
think any of them would favor the plan.
"In fact, I haven't seen anyone besides
the NCAA Extra Events Committee, and'
Frank Broyles, who is in favor of it. I
think there is going to be such a negative
reaction that the NCAA is gonna wish
they never brought it'up. The climate is
not right for it now."
Dan McNamara, executive director of
the Orange Bowl, feels the bowls would
lose much of the lustre they have now.
"I think a playoff would probably be
the demise of the bowl games as we
know them today," he says. "The bowls
By CHUCK RUSS •
Daily Collegian Sports Writer
Two of the top gym teams in the
country, the men's gymnastics team and
Southern Illinois, compete at 7:30
tomorrow night in Rec Hall.
Both squads, however, have been
plagued with injuries this season. The
Lions will be without top all-arounder
Bob Desiderio, and floor and vault
specialist Tom Gray. Desiderio is out
with muscle cramps of the lower back,
an injury he suffered while warming up
for last week's meet at Ohio State. Gray,
also injured during the same warm-ups,
is out with an achilles tendon injury.
The Salukis will be without their
number three all-arounder, Kevin
Muenz, who is out for the entire season
with a back injury. Rick Adams, their
top all-arounder who finished fifth in the
nationals last year, can compete in only
the horse and parallel bars because of a
The 7-3 Salukis have more of a
problem because of their lack of depth.
Because of their injuries, they will have
only five competitors on three events
and only four competitors on the high
bar. Still, the 11th-ranked Salukis are
something the fifth-ranked Lions must
Illustration by Della Hoke
watch out for. They do have talent.
The AA's are led by Muenz's younger
brother Dan. Dan Muenz won the AA
title with a 54.80 when the two teams met
last year, beating Adams by .1 and Paul
Simon by .6. This year Muenz has a high
AA score of 54.95. He will team with
fellow AA's Scott Mcßroom and Brian
Babcock to form a trio that have all
surpassed the 53-point mark. Babcock,
in fact, may be the best of the bunch, at
least according to Southern Illinois'
coach Bill Meade.
"He will probably be the best gymnast
we have at the end of the year," Meade
said. "He hag more moves and can do
more tricks than any gymnast I've ever
had. He's only a freshmen, but we're
counting on him."
Meade has had a hex over Penn State
coach Karl Schwenzfeier throughout
their careers. The SIU coach has never
lost to a Schwenzfeier coached team and
he doesn't intend to start now.
"I'm very competitive and I like to
win, especially at my alma mater,"
Meade said. "We get really psyched up
to play Penn State. It should be a fun
"They always give us a dog fight,"
Schwenzfeier said. "They have an ex
drought with win
By TOM VERDUCCI
and WILL PAKUTKA
Daily Collegian Sports Writers
For the first time this year, Lion
wrestling coach Rich Lorenzo sat on
the South side of the team's bench.
And for the first time this year, the'
Lions won a dual match.
"I figured that I had sat in the same
place for too long," Lorenzo said.
"About 11 matches too long."
It Was the outstanding efforts in the
first three matches that paved the
way for the 29-11 victory over Lock
Jack Chidester picked up his first
fall of the season as he pinned Lock
Haven's Keith Dixon with only 1:25
gone in the' bout. Bob Bury then
followed with a 19-11 superior
decision in the 126-pound match.
After Bury's win, the scoreboards
went out, and after a ten minute
delay, it seemed that the early
momentum that the Lions' had
gained was lost. Jim Earl then took
over and took a 9-2 decision over
Vince Testa in a 134-pound bout
giving the Lions' a 13-0 lead.
The Lions had the victory locked up
by the time the heavyweight match
came along but not too many people
left before the end of that bout.
would become preliminary games, not
the college football showcases they are
today. In essence, they would become
stepping stones to a national title game.
"The big bowl games would lose their
prestige. Under this proposal, you're
talking about reaching out and saying all
the bowls are equal because you don't
know where the playoff teams will come
from. The big bowls wouldn't be that
much more important than the others."
Brock isn't sure that the playoff would
achieve its purpose to determine an
undisputed national champion.
"I can see why people would want a
plan to determine a true champion," he
says. "But will it settle all the
arguments? I don't think so. I'm sitting
here in the heart of Dallas Cowboys'
territory and the people here still aren't
convinced that" the Steelers are World
Probably the main objection the bowl
officials have to the proposal is that the
bowl matchups could conceivably
become less attractive, and the result,
they fear, would be reduced payoffs
from the networks that telecast them.
"The top teams would be jockeying for
a position in the bowls rather than facing
each other head on," Brock says. "They
would want to face a team that they felt
they could beat. They certainly wouldn't
be chosen for a playoff if they lost their
bowl game. You simply would not have a
national championship matchup like we
had this year.
"Our main consideration then is the
impact a playoff would have on TV
revenue. There could be problems in
negotiating new contracts. They might
take the position that the New Year's
Day bowls aren't quite as lucrative as
they would be. I don't know, but why
CBS, which televises the Cotton Bowl,
has just signed a new three-year con
Friday, Feb. 16, 1979-10
tremely good program and they are
always nationally ranked."
Both coaches are approaching this
meet very cautiously because they know
that any more serious injuries could ruin
their teams' chances of making
"We want to be very protective of our
gymnasts now," Schwenzfeier , said.
"It's that time of the year where the
wear and tear of a season really shows
on a team. We have to be very careful."
RINGERS: This will be SlU's second
opportunity to visit Penn State this year.
The first time, for the Penn State In
vitational, the Salukis couldn't come
because of a snow storm that kept them
at home in Carbondale . . . Last year
Penn State lost to Southern Illinois
216.10-214.00 . . . SIU features one of the
top pommel horse specialists in the
country in David Schieble . . . There is a
possibility that Lion gymnast Joe
Stallone could see his first action of the
season Saturday . . . The Lions score of
221.15 against Indiana State ranks
second in the nation to Oklahoma's 223.3
. . . The Salukis have lost to Oklahoma,
Northern Illinois and lowa State, but
Meade hopes that his team will still
' The Lions' Jim Sleeper, who had
compiled a less than impressive
record of 1-16 was the heavy un
derdog against Lock Haven's 11-3
Gregg Koontz. But after 11
depressing dual meet losses, Sleeper
woke up to stun Koontz and everyone
in attendance with a 5-2 victory.
"Sleeper did an excellent job,"
Lorenzo said. "That was one of the
better heavyweights he's wrestled
this year. I hope it takes . some of the
pressure off him."
Last night's crowd of less than 600
was the smallest for any Lion match
this season but don't tell
. that to
Sleeper. When he rolled Koontz on his
back in the third period, Rec Hall was
filled by a thunderous roar and the
sounds of clapping hands and kicked
bleachers lasted until the final
seconds were counted down.
"I think my major problem this
year has been dumb mistakes.
Tonight I just concentrated on not
making them," Sleeper said. "I hope
tonight was a start in the right
But with the ice finally broken for
the Lions, and tournament comep
tition just around the corner, Sleeper
isn't the only one with that on his
tract with the Cotton Bowl so the payoffs
will be stable regardless of a playoff.
CBS sports executive Beano Cook says
the payoffs wouldn't be lowered as long
as the Nielsen ratings were good. And
Cook feels the bowl games may take one
even greater significance for viewers if
a playoff was instituted.
"I think the playoff system would
enhance the importance of the bowl
games for the viewers," Cook says.
"They would realize that the winners It,
could go on to a championship game.
"The college ratings have gone down
two straight years now. I think we have
to offer something new to get them back
up. A playoff could do that."
Rex Lardner, associate producer of
NBC Sports, doesn't agree with Cook.
"Even if the No. 1 and No. 2 team
played, it would be comparable to Pitt
sburgh and Dallas meeting in a pre
season game," Lardner says. "I don't
think the bowl games would be as
meaningful. Right now, they're the end
all. They're the final games of the year."
Lardner thinks the viewers might
think of the holiday season, and Jan. 1 in
particular, as a chance to spend more
time with each other, rather than in
front of the tube.
"If people have other things to do, they
might be inclined to do them rather than
watch the games," he says. "They would
know they could catch the playoffs and
the title game later."
ABC would love to see a playoff
system enacted. It would have the
telecast rights because it carries the
weekly college games. Cook estimates
that three playoff games would be worth
$43 million in TV money. Part of that
money would go to the teams involved in
the playoff. Joe Paterno, a longtime
advocate of a playoff, suggests that the
remaining "millions of dollars from
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