ESPN.com’s Farrell Evans noted Monumental Sports & Entertainment Vice Chair SHEILA JOHNSON in early February “became the first African-American woman elected" to the 15-member USGA Exec Committee, and there “might not be a better person in America more suited than her to help the USGA grow the game.” She is “at once an outsider to this elite world and an insider as one of the most powerful women in golf.” Johnson said, “We have so many groups, women and people of color who love golf, but aren’t feeling included inside this bubble. We need to start a whole p.r. marketing campaign to let people know that we want to be inclusive rather than exclusive” (ESPN.com, 2/26).
BOX OFFICE BOMBERS: Yankees 3B ALEX RODRIGUEZ voices a role in the new animated film “Henry & Me,” which was screened yesterday for club officials by producers JOSEPH AVALLONE and JOE CASTELLANO, director BARRETT ESPOSITO and exec producer RAY NEGRON. Negron is a longtime Yankees adviser whose “pinstripe-centric children’s books are the foundation of the story.” The voiceover cast of the film includes RICHARD GERE and PAUL SIMON, with REGGIE JACKSON, YOGI BERRA, BERNIE WILLIAMS, CC SABATHIA, JOE GIRARDI and BRIAN CASHMAN playing themselves. Late Yankees PA announcer BOB SHEPPARD “taped a few lines” for the film “less than six months before he died” (N.Y. POST, 2/27).
ONLY IN AMERICA: Boxing promoter DON KING “pulled a surprise on Tuesday, winning the right to promote” the MARCO HUCK-OLA AFOLABI cruiserweight title fight. King bid a "whopping" $1.5M. King, who “does not promote either fighter, blew away the two other offers." The bidding was held because the fighters’ promoters “could not reach an agreement.” Under King’s bid, Huck gets 80% of the purse ($1.2M) and Afolabi gets 20% ($300,000) (ESPN.com, 2/26).
DEVIL DETAILS: Duke men’s basketball coach MIKE KRZYZEWSKI yesterday said again that he “doesn’t plan to return” as Team USA men’s basketball coach. Krzyzewski said that during and after the London Games he “wasn’t planning to return" to the position he had held since ’05. However, he “still hasn’t confirmed that decision” with USA Basketball Chair JERRY COLANGELO, who “has said they will talk after the college season” (AP, 2/26).
NAMES: Colts QB coach CLYDE CHRISTENSEN is “part of a group that left Tuesday for a six-day trip to visit U.S. troops at bases in Iraq and Afghanistan.” The trip also includes Broncos QB PEYTON MANNING and free agent WR AUSTIN COLLIE (INDYSTAR.com, 2/27)….Miami (Ohio) Univ. will induct 49ers coach and alum JOHN HARBAUGH into the Cradle of Coaches Association. He will be “immortalized with a statue at Yager Stadium’s Cradle of Coaches Plaza” in early ’14 (CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 2/27)....Bobcats Owner MICHAEL JORDAN last week “purchased a 12,310-square-foot lakefront home” in The Peninsula neighborhood of Cornelius, N.C., for $2.8M (BIZJOURNALS.com, 2/26)….NASCAR driver TRAVIS PASTRANA and wife LYN-Z ADAMS HAWKINS PASTRANA “announced via Facebook that ‘baby Pastrana’ is officially on the way” (ESPN.com, 2/26).
IN MEMORY: Fishing writer JOHN MERWIN died on Feb. 20 at the age of 66. Merwin in the early '70s was Fly Fisherman magazine’s managing editor before he founded Rod & Reel magazine in the late ‘70s. He joined Field & Stream in ’94 and became its fishing editor in ’03. Merwin retired from that position in ’10, but continued to write articles and blog posts (N.Y. TIMES, 2/27).