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Rams Pledge Support for Ethiopia

March 20, 1985|RICH ROBERTS | Times Staff Writer

Eric Dickerson presented commemorative rings Tuesday to the dozen Ram blockers who helped him set a National Football League rushing record of 2,105 yards last season.

But Dickerson, who gave them Rolex watches a year ago after he had gained 1,808 yards as a rookie, warned them: "I'm not gonna play Santa Claus every year."

The linemen had a better idea, anyway.

"We're each going to give a dollar for every yard Eric makes next season to feed the kids in Ethiopia," guard Dennis Harrah said. "And we would like to make that a challenge to everybody in the NFL."

Harrah said that the Ethiopian fund was center Doug Smith's idea. Dickerson's yards last season would have raised $25,260 from the Rams.

The rings, bearing the numerals 2105, are in 14-karat gold settings with, Dickerson said, "24 or 25 diamonds, I can't remember." Each individual's name or nickname is engraved inside the band.

Dickerson presented the rings to Harrah, Smith, Bill Bain, David Hill, Mike Guman, Mike Barber, Russ Bolinger, James McDonald, Joe Shearin, Irv Pankey, Jackie Slater and Kent Hill.

"They don't get much credit," Dickerson said. "We didn't go to the Super Bowl and didn't do very well in the playoffs, so I wanted to do something nice for them.

"Guman plays running back but nobody knows that."

When Bain accepted his ring, he told Dickerson: "We couldn't have done it without you."

Later, Bain told reporters: "I'm gonna have it appraised before I thank him."

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