While "tying up loose ends" at the USOC's headquarters
     in CO, outgoing CEO Norm Blake said that he is "concerned"
     that U.S. Olympic athletes "suffer at the hands of self-
     interested USOC officials and members," according to USA
     TODAY's Vicki Michaelis.  Blake: "What I pray for is the
     American public can help save our athletes."  Michaelis
     calls the comments "ironic" since the USOC's athlete
     representatives were "among those who took issue" with
     Blake's leadership (USA TODAY, 11/3).  In a sidebar under
     the header, "USOC Up In Arms Over Future Of Leadership,"
     Michaelis writes that with Blake gone, "the USOC is in
     upheaval."  Blake hired five senior managers during his nine
     months, and USOC employees are "wondering" if those mangers
     will remain.  Meanwhile, Michaelis cites an October 10
     letter obtained by USA TODAY written by USOC VP and
     President candidate Sandy Baldwin to outgoing President Bill
     Hybl, in which she "expressed concerns" over Blake's budget
     proposals and staff changes.  The letter "turned out to be
     the last straw" for Blake, who said, "I felt it was
     disrespectful and underhanded" (USA TODAY, 11/3).
          BLACKMUN THE ANSWER? In Colorado Springs, Ralph Routon
     calls the naming of Scott Blackmun as Acting CEO a "great
     move" by the USOC (see THE DAILY, 11/1).  Routon: "Don't be
     surprised if the USOC executive committee removes that
     'acting' label before Christmas.  Blackmun looks like a
     perfect fit, fully capable of becoming the organization's
     most effective and long-lasting CEO since the late F. Don
     Miller (who retired after 1984)" (CO Springs GAZETTE, 11/3).

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