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Volume 24 No. 156

Collegiate Sports

          The NCAA annual convention begins today in Nashville
     with two main issues on the agenda, "completing a
     restructuring of the organization's system of governance and
     voting on a number of issues concerning amateurism,"
     according to David Nakamura of the WASHINGTON POST.  Among
     issues to be discussed at the four day conference include
     whether athletes should be able to work during the year
     while on athletic scholarships; whether "elite" athletes
     should be allowed to borrow money against future potential
     earnings as a professional to buy anything they want
     (currently, they can borrow only to purchase disabling-
     injury insurance); and whether to keep in place a rule that
     allows men's basketball players to declare themselves
     eligible for the NBA draft and return to school within 30
     days if they do not like their draft position and have not
     signed with an agent (WASHINGTON POST, 1/11).
          NCAA TAKES ON USA TODAY: The NCAA has formally
     contacted USA Today and other publications informing them
     that unless they stop publishing ads for gambling tip
     services they will not be issued credentials to cover the
     Final Four of the NCAA men's and women's basketball
     tournaments, according to Bonnie DeSimone of the CHICAGO
     TRIBUNE.  A letter advising media outlets of the policy will
     be included in the credentials applications.  NCAA Exec Dir
     Cedric Dempsey: "Is this (measure) symbolic?  Yes.  But it
     helps change consciousness" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 1/12).  USA
     Today said they will have a response soon, and Paul Bowker,
     President of AP Sports Editors, noted that commercial speech
     is protected by the First Amendment (L.A. TIMES, 1/12).