UCLA Television Decision Angers Washington State

Times Staff Writer

When UCLA plays football at Washington State Saturday, the game will be televised in Los Angeles on Channel 4 through the Lorimar Sports Network. The teams will split about $30,000.

That irritates Jim Walden, coach at Washington State, whose pet peeve is the way the Pacific 10 splits TV money, generally, and who figures there was more money to be made in this particular case.

Walden's gripe is that UCLA had already completed negotiating the contract for local television--after working through the Pacific 10 office and getting permission from Washington State--when Turner Broadcasting System decided that it wanted to televise the game.

A TBS contract would have been worth about $100,000 to each team. UCLA said it had held out until late last week, hoping for a TBS contract, but that TBS had repeatedly rejected the game. Its last-minute request was made after UCLA was already bound to the Lorimar deal.

Walden apparently thought UCLA should have waited a little longer. "Yeah, we lost some money, but what's $100,000 more or less to a school like Washington State?" he said on a phone hookup after UCLA Coach Terry Donahue's weekly breakfast press conference. "We've got plenty.

"The important thing is to be sure that the wealthy teams in our conference stay wealthy and the same three teams go to bowl games every year while the Big Ten sends seven or eight.

"That's all the hell that matters."

UCLA's game next week at the Rose Bowl against Cal will be televised nationally by TBS.

The game at Washington State Saturday will begin at 1 p.m. but game time for the Cal game next week has been changed to 5 p.m.

Bruin Notes UCLA swept Pac-10 player-of-the-week honors, but UCLA coaches were not necessarily in agreement. Tailback James Primus was named the conference's top offensive player, and inside linebacker Ken Norton was named top defensive player. Primus became the Bruins' leading rusher with 368 yards after his 129-yard game at Stanford. Norton had nine tackles and a key interception. The Bruin coaches, however, name their own top offensive and defensive players each week. Primus was their top offensive player, but defensive tackle Mark Walen was their pick for top defensive player. He had eight tackles, including three sacks. . . . Tailback Gaston Green's chance of returning to the lineup Saturday is being listed as questionable. Coach Terry Donahue said: "I'm sure if you ask him, he'll say he's ready. He said he was ready last week, but we thought he was about 85%. He might play this week. We don't know yet." . . . UCLA ranks first in the Pac-10 in rushing offense, averaging 219.8 yards a game. The Bruins are still No. 2 in the nation in rushing defense behind Oklahoma.

Washington State quarterback Mark Rypien ranks eighth nationally in total offense, averaging 263.3 yards a game. Rueben Mayes is 13 yards away from becoming Washington State's leading rusher. And Kerry Porter has returned after an injury last season to share the rushing load with Mayes.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World