One of sport's premier events, the World Cup, would be held every two years, rather than four, if a proposal by the president of soccer's world governing body is accepted.
FIFA President Sepp Blatter said his far-reaching plan would heighten the status of national teams, which he said was threatened by proposals for a new Super League of European clubs.
"I am demanding a clear statement: Do we want national teams or do we only want club football?" Blatter told the Zurich, Switzerland, weekly publication SonntagsBlick.
Blatter said his plan would call for the competition in even-numbered years, with qualification for the finals in odd-numbered years when national teams would take part in continental tournaments.
"The existing four-yearly tournament is out of date," Blatter said. "It dates from the 1930s when teams chugged from one continent to another on ships."
Under the FIFA president's plan, the existing system of qualification, in which teams play international matches in groups over the course of the years leading up to the finals, would be dropped.
Blatter, elected FIFA president last June, said his proposals were a reaction to European media tycoons pressing for a European super league of top club teams.
He said he feared that, under a super league, clubs would be unwilling to release their international stars and that the next World Cup--in Japan and South Korea in 2002--would be a competition among reserve teams.
Blatter said he has already proposed the plan to the FIFA executive committee, which is studying it. Changes could not come into effect before 2006.
A coalition of community activists has repeated its call for the resignations of top Salt Lake Organizing Committee officials if probes into bribery in Salt Lake's bid find wrongdoing.
The Salt Lake Impact 2002 and Beyond Coalition asked that SLOC President Frank Joklik, senior vice president Dave Johnson and legal counsel Kelly Flint not conduct Olympic business until the four investigations are complete and it is decided if they should resign.
The group also wants SLOC to open its documents and meetings to the public and abolish all consultants' pay.
To some Olympic athletes, the most surprising thing about the scandal surrounding Salt Lake's bid for the 2002 Winter Games is the apparent naivete of the U.S. public.
Several current and former athletes were interviewed by the Ogden, Utah, Standard-Examiner about the scandal that has prompted investigations into accusations that local bid officials bribed International Olympic Committee members for their votes.
The athletes told the newspaper they weren't at all surprised by the news reports that IOC members and their relatives received favors from Salt Lake officials.
John Bower, a 1968 Olympic competitor in Nordic skiing, wonders why some people appear so surprised that money and politics dominate the Olympic site-selection process.
"The IOC probably takes it to a little higher level, but if I'd been in one of those key positions with SLOC, I'd probably have done the same thing," he said.
Catcher Terry Steinbach has reached an agreement with the Minnesota Twins on a one-year contract worth about $1 million, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported. Steinbach batted .242 with 14 home runs and 54 runs batted in last season.
Sweden's Pernilla Wiberg made a stunning comeback to win the women's World Cup slalom at Maribor, Slovenia. Ninth after the first run, Wiberg powered down the foggy and chopped-up course in 57.55 seconds--the fastest second run.
She finished with a combined time of 1 minute 54.88 seconds. Germany's Hilde Gerg, finished second, just 0.29 seconds off Wiberg's pace. Kristina Koznick was the top American, finishing ninth.
American record holder Casey FitzRandolph and Christine Witty again won the men's and women's 500-meter races on the last day of the two-day U.S. Sprint Championships at Roseville, Minn.
FitzRandolph won in 37.96 seconds. Witty won in 41.52.
Skipper Jean-Pierre Mouligne won Division II of the Around Alone yacht race and sailed into the history books by competing against--and beating--the larger Class I yachts to finish fourth overall. Mouligne arrived at Auckland, New Zealand, more than 700 miles ahead of his closest division competitor and ahead of three Class I yachts.