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BARBARIANS AT THE GATE: COLUMNISTS BLAST RAIDER DAVIS

          On Tuesday, Raiders Senior Assistant Bruce Allen
     announced that the team had fired head coach Joe Bugel,
     their forth coach in five years.  The move prompted several
     columnists to weigh in on the state of the team and Owner Al
     Davis' administration.  In S.F., Ray Ratto wrote that
     Raiders fans "aren't buying tickets.  They aren't worrying
     about the week-to-week blackouts.  They aren't buying the
     shirts and hats and jackets, and most of all they aren't
     buying Bruce Allen's explanations of the company line.  They
     shouldn't have to.  They deserve to have Al Davis sitting
     before them, explaining why the hell it went so bad, and how
     it's going to get better" (S.F. EXAMINER, 1/7). In San Jose,
     Ann Killion: "We don't know what Davis is going to do. 
     Except one thing: He's not going to step aside.  And that,
     of course, appears to be the problem" (MERCURY NEWS, 1/7). 
     From Boston, Bob Ryan: "It is very, very difficult to go
     from unchallenged genius to pathetic buffoon, but Al Davis
     has managed to do it" (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/8).  In N.Y., Shaun
     Powell: "As long as Davis is lurking behind the scenes,
     controlling the direction of a franchise that's now among
     the worst-run in football, the Raiders will remain in
     dubious hands no matter who's coaching" (NEWSDAY, 1/8).  

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