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MORNING BRIEFING

These Courses Keep the Ivy on the Walls

April 04, 1992|GARY KLEIN

Now that March Madness has descended upon Minneapolis, the local media are supplying college basketball fans with all kinds of information about Duke, Michigan, Cincinnati and Indiana.

The St. Paul Pioneer Press, for example, published a "Campus Crib Sheet" that gave readers the lowdown on university classes it dubbed "Easy A's."

Duke--Any course with a title that includes the words " . . . and Society," such as "Advertising and Society," "Mass Media and Society" or even "Phlebotomy and Society."

Michigan--Science mini-courses such as "Waves and Beaches" and "Geology, Fossils and Human Evolution."

Cincinnati--"Urban Lobbying" and "Music History," described as "cattle-herd classes of 500 to 600 students."

Indiana--"Freshmen Geology" (nicknamed Rocks for Jocks) and "Introduction to Weather and Climate."

Familiar ring: On the road to its national championship in 1989, Michigan won two NCAA tournament games at the Omni in Atlanta and two games at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Ky. The Wolverines advanced to the Final Four this year with regional victories at the same sites.

"One thing I'm hoping for is that the final result will be the same in this last site," Michigan Coach Steve Fisher said. "But I'll be honest, I'm not a superstitious guy."

Michigan won its 1989 national title at the Seattle Kingdome. This year's Final Four is at the Metrodome.

Trivia time: Besides UCLA and Duke, what other school made five consecutive appearances in the Final Four?

Cable me up: The NHL strike means the temporary end of "Hockey Night in Canada," a Saturday night television ritual.

Steve Hall, manager of the Sports Cafe in Toronto, says that is bad news for everyone.

"When you take away Hockey Night in Canada, it's like cereal without milk," he said. "It's a dry feeling. Baseball season starts Monday, but we are 162 games from anything exciting."

Feeling at home: Owners such as Joe Robbie of the Miami Dolphins build stadiums and name them after themselves. Then there's broadcaster Tim McCarver, who might be the first owner to buy into a team that plays in a stadium already bearing his name.

McCarver, who grew up in Memphis and played minor league ball there before moving on to a 21-year major league career, recently purchased part of the double-A Memphis Chicks.

In 1978, the Memphis baseball stadium formerly known as Fairgrounds No. 3 was renamed Tim McCarver Stadium.

Pick-up game: Utah Coach Rick Majerus was not ashamed that his team played in the National Invitation Tournament rather than the NCAA tournament.

"It's not important which dance you go to, it's just important you go to a dance," Majerus told the Chicago Sun-Times. "I always tell my guys, 'You've got to know what you are and who you are.' I'm fat and bald and not very good looking. I'm looking to date a five. I could get a six--late at night, dark bar, she's drunk."

Cool idea: Soccer legend Pele is intrigued by the selection of the Pontiac Silverdome as one of the sites for the 1994 World Cup.

"You never are supposed to have a stadium with 70,000 people and air-conditioning. This is fantastic and could only be in America."

Trivia answer: Cincinnati, from 1959-63.

Quotebook: Cincinnati forward Terry Nelson on the volatility of Coach Bob Huggins: "If caring for a person is based on yelling and screaming, then he loves us very much."

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