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Morning Briefing

Just Like Rockne, Holtz Pulls 'Gipper'

October 20, 1987

When Notre Dame's football team took the field Saturday before its game against Air Force, Coach Lou Holtz stopped for a second to talk to a big fan of the Irish, a 30-year-old New York police officer.

What's so unusual about that? Well, the policeman, Steven McDonald, is paralyzed from the neck down, the result of his having been shot in the neck by a 15-year-old robbery suspect. Watching Notre Dame play a game was his lifelong dream.

McDonald is unable to breathe for extended periods of time without a respirator, but he used a portable one and saw the game from his wheelchair on the sidelines. But first, he received a Notre Dame blanket, cap and shirt.

Holtz, who praised McDonald for his courage in their short pregame chat, also promised him that the Irish would win.

"I was afraid I wrote a check the team had to cash," Holtz said.

But Notre Dame did win, 35-14, and McDonald got a game ball.

Quick, get Cal Worthington on the phone. For weeks, a Minneapolis man unsuccessfully tried to sell his car.

But when the Minnesota Twins won a spot in the World Series, Bob Distad got an idea--he offered his four Series tickets to anyone who would buy the car.

He put up a sign in his front yard offering his four tickets--and his 1983 Chrysler--for $3,850. Within hours, Distad had sold his tickets and the car.

Trivia time: How old was current heavyweight champion Mike Tyson when Larry Holmes, his next opponent, won the World Boxing Council heavyweight title? (Answer below.)

Add Holmes: You might want to remember this quote from the 37-year-old former champion, who is stepping out of retirement to fight Tyson Jan. 23.

"I don't need the money," Holmes said.

Uh huh. But even if he's doing it just for fun, Holmes will still get a reported $3.1 million for mixing it up with Tyson.

Bulletin: This just in, on page 50 of the Clippers' 1987-88 media guide, the result of the championship final between Boston and the Lakers:

"Celtics won series, 4-2."

Huh?

Trivia answer: Tyson was 11. Holmes won the WBC title June 9, 1978.

Are those crazy Minnesota fans loud or what?

Well, hear this: When the Twins' Dan Gladden hit his grand slam in Game 1 of the World Series, the sellout gathering of 55,171 in the Metrodome, the first World Series crowd in Minnesota in 22 years, got downright boisterous.

According to a sound meter supplied by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, the fans were recorded at 118 decibels, which is just short of the sound of a jet plane leaving the ground.

The thudding sound the Cardinals are making has not been measured.

Quotebook

From Wilt Chamberlain, inducted into the San Pedro Sport swalk at age 51, after emcee Ed Arnold suggested Wilt could still make mincemeat of some current National Basketball Assn. centers: "They are mincemeat."

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