SBD/Issue 152/Sports Industrialists

Names In The News

Lakers Unveil Statue Of Late Broadcaster
Chick Hearn Outside Staples Center Last Night

The Lakers yesterday "unveiled a 5,000 pound, nearly 16-foot statue" of late broadcaster CHICK HEARN outside Staples Center at a ceremony before last night's Thunder-Lakers game. About a "dozen Lakers legends were on hand," as were Lakers GM MITCH KUPCHAK, Exec VP/Business Operations JEANIE BUSS (ESPNLOSANGELES.com, 4/20). The 45-minute ceremony took place "in front of a crowd of about 500." The bronze statue, which was created by OMRI AMRANY, shows Hearn "sitting at a table while wearing a headset, looking like he's midsentence while calling a game." A chair next to the statue "remains open, allowing fans to take photographs in it" (L.A. TIMES, 4/21).

A TROUBLING DEVELOPMENT: In N.Y., Karen Crouse reports USA Swimming's BOD held an "emergency teleconference Sunday night," during which they "devised a seven-point plan to address the issue of coaches' taking advantage of their young athletes." USA Swimming's policy "calls for any complaint to be referred" to Exec Dir CHUCK WIELGUS, who subsequently "turns it over to the organization's legal counsel, which opens an investigation" (N.Y. TIMES, 4/21).

TIME TO TAKE CHARGE: In Newark, Steve Politi wrote Rutgers AD TIM PERNETTI will have his "success or failure as an athletic director linked to the downtrodden basketball program -- and to the coach he hires now after a long and messy divorce with FRED HILL JR." The forthcoming hire is the "first true test for Pernetti, and he is off to a rocky start" after he "let uncertainty swirl around his troubled program for more than two weeks before finally announcing Hill's dismissal Monday." Rutgers "needs more than a coach right now." The school "needs a salesman, a recruiter and a fundraiser." Pernetti is "trying to raise money for renovating the Rutgers Athletic Center and practice facility, a project that is just as important to the basketball program's success as a new leader" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 4/20).

Jones Has Busy Day
Surrounding NFL Draft

NO REST FOR THE JERRY: In Dallas, Todd Archer writes Cowboys Owner JERRY JONES, 66, has an "energy level that would knock out any Red Bull-sipping twentysomething, especially" around the NFL Draft. Jones yesterday started the day with an early-morning workout on the elliptical machine, and ended it at Ft. Worth's Bass Performance Hall for a symphony. In between, Jones was the "guest speaker at the SMU Athletic Forum Luncheon and was given the Distinguished Texan Award by the National Football Foundation Gridiron Club of Dallas at Cowboys Stadium" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 4/21).

NAMES: Driver DANICA PATRICK "will be voicing a character" in the racing videogame "Blur." The game, due out May 25, "lets players race more than 50 licensed cars from the familiar to the exotic over tracks based on real-world locations" (USA TODAY, 4/21)....MLS Galaxy assistant coach COBI JONES and former WPS FC Gold Pride D BRANDI CHASTAIN have teamed to "promote the Man Up Campaign to get youth to 'man up' and stand up to violence against women and girls." The two are featured in a PSA that will debut at Man Up's global summit at this summer's FIFA World Cup (WASHINGTONTIMES.com, 4/20)...."Time for Africa," a song by SHAKIRA and South African band Freshlyground, "has been chosen as the official World Cup anthem." The song is "expected to be released to radio stations across the world next week and will be available for download beginning April 26." Shakira and Freshlyground will "perform the song at the World Cup kickoff concert in Soweto on June 10" (AP, 4/16)....Patriots Owner ROBERT KRAFT, CB DARIUS BUTLER and Boston Culinary Group Chair JOE O'DONNELL attended last night's Heat-Celtics game at TD Garden (BOSTON HERALD, 4/21)....Redskins Owner DAN SNYDER, Exec VP & GM BRUCE ALLEN, coach & VP/Football Operations MIKE SHANAHAN and QB DONOVAN MCNABB will sit at the Washington Times table at the White House Correspondents' Dinner on May 1 (POLITICO.com, 4/19)....Cubs Chair TOM RICKETTS and his family were spotted "enjoying dinner at Mia Francesca after a recent Cubs game" in Chicago (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 4/21).

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