SBD/Issue 126/Sports Industrialists

Names In The News

Yankees co-Chair & Managing General Partner Hal Steinbrenner said "the plan" is for Chair GEORGE STEINBRENNER to attend the Yankees home opener April 13 against the Angels. George Steinbrenner "has been in poor health" and "has rarely been seen at Yankee Stadium of late," tough he attended the first two games of the '09 Yankees-Phillies World Series (AP, 3/13).

Ditka Claims To Have No Regrets
For Passing Up Chance At Senate Seat

POLITICAL BEAT: Red Sox Senior Advisor of Baseball Projects JEREMY KAPSTEIN is "seriously thinking about running" for Rhode Island Lieutenant Governor. Kapstein "would run in a Democratic primary against the incumbent," Lt. Gov. ELIZABETH ROBERTS. Kapstein: "In these very difficult times, we must make the office of lieutenant governor a powerful force for job preservation and job creation. I love our state and I want to help" (PROVIDENCE JOURNAL, 3/14)....ESPN's MIKE DITKA said that he has "no regrets about passing up Republican Party overtures to run against" President BARACK OBAMA for the Illinois U.S. Senate seat in '04. Ditka said politicians in DC are "not there to represent a party, a special interest." Ditka: "You're there to represent America, the people that elected you. They don't do that. I'm sorry, they don't do it! And you can make all these promises when you're a candidate, and none of them happen" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 3/14).

INSURANCE PAYOUT: The family of late Georgia luger Nodar Kumaritashvili "will receive a death benefit" from VANOC. VANOC VP/Communications Renee Smith-Valade said that the committee "had notified Kumaritashvili's family that his death was covered under a private insurance program it was required to provide for members of the Olympic family." Smith-Valade "would not say how much the death benefit is," though she said it is an "appropriate and respectful sum" (VANCOUVER SUN, 3/15).

WRITERS BLOCK: Washington Post columnist JOHN FEINSTEIN said that he has "backed away -- at least for now -- from doing a biography" of former Univ. of North Carolina men's basketball coach DEAN SMITH. Feinstein last August announced that Smith "had agreed to cooperate on the book, which was scheduled for release next year," but Feinstein said that Smith's family "told him they feared the kind of time the writer needed might be too taxing on the 79-year-old." Feinstein Friday said that he "might write a book about Smith later, but do one that doesn't require his help" (Greensboro NEWS & RECORD, 3/15)....Detroit Free Press columnist MITCH ALBOM "was selected for the biggest prize of his journalism career: the Red Smith Award." The award is "bestowed annually for lifetime achievement" by the AP Sports Editors (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 3/14).

NAMES: The Detroit Sports Broadcasters Association has "initiated a lifetime contribution award" called the ERNIE HARWELL Lifetime Contribution Award, in recognition of the former Tigers broadcaster (AP, 3/14)....Former NFLers KEITH VAN HORNE and CALVIN THOMAS, both members of the '85 Bears, are "part of the U.S. Census Bureau's efforts to reach historically undercounted communities." The bureau's sports collaborative program is "sending retired athletes into schools, public housing and community events within hard-to-count areas, as part of a $340[M] marketing and advertising campaign" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 3/13)....Celtics Managing Partner STEVE PAGLIUCA and President RICH GOTHAM "toured the new Fisher House" in Boston Friday with Fisher House Foundation CEO KENNETH FISHER and President DAVID COKER. The Celtics "have a fund-raising partnership with Fisher House, which provides housing near hospitals for families of soldiers treated for illness, disease, or injury" (BOSTON GLOBE, 3/13)....BNP Paribas Open Owner LARRY ELLISON Friday night presented the Red Cross $1M for relief efforts in Haiti after hosting the “Hit for Haiti” charity tennis event at Indian Wells Tennis Garden (Palm Springs DESERT SUN, 3/13)….Skateboarder TONY HAWK and actors KEANU REEVES, ADRIEN BRODY and CHRISTIAN SLATER are among entrants in this year’s April 17 celebrity race preceding the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (LATIMES.com, 3/11)….VANOC CEO JOHN FURLONG will receive an honorary degree from the Univ. of British Columbia this spring (VANCOUVER SUN, 3/13)….U.S. swimmer MICHAEL PHELPS attended JAY-Z’s concert in Atlantic City on Saturday night (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 3/15).

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