Channel 56 is a Washington cable station that solicits donations. It is owned by 37-year-old Mike Baker who says modestly, "This is the nation's first public superstation."
Norman Chad of the Washington Post says: "Where else can you see 'More Magic Methods of Oil Painting,' a Korean language show and Davidson-UT Chattanooga without changing channels?"
Lately, basketball has been the big thing, and Tony Kornheiser of the Washington Post says: "Whatever else you thought of doing this Saturday, forget it. Whatever plans you made, cancel them. It's imperative that you stay home and watch 56. As Crazy Eddie would say, 'Our schedule is INSANE!'
"Starting at 7 in the morning, 56 is planning on televising the following games: the SEC semifinals and a WAC semifinal on tape, the Metro semifinals live, the WAC final live, Notre Dame-Dayton on tape, a Big Ten or a Pac-10 game (or maybe both) live, the MAC final live, AND!!!, on tape, the Mid-Continent final, but only if Cleveland State gets to the final. (I certainly agree with that, don't you? Cleveland State is, after all, Cleveland State, but if some other teams in the Mid-Continent, like Valparaiso, Wisconsin Green Bay, or Southwest Missouri State get there, who cares, right?) This TV schedule is subject to change, of course. They might add more games."
Trivia Time: David Owens of Los Angeles submits this one: Twenty years ago this season Pauley Pavilion opened. UCLA was the two-time defending national champion and the Associated Press' preseason No. 1 pick. In their first game at Pauley, who did the Bruins play and who won? (Answer below.)
When Ron Darling of the New York Mets lost $175,000 in arbitration, he won the sympathy of Robert Mellman, a Union City, N.J., attorney.
The arbitrator was Roger Abrams, and Mellman told Marty Noble of Newsday that he once had taken a law course taught by Abrams at Case Western Reserve in Cleveland.
Wellman said he wrote a letter to Darling, in which he said: "I wrote a final exam paper worthy of an 'A'. Abrams gave me a 'C'. Professor Abrams has a habit of underestimating great talent."
Two years ago, when 6-foot 11-inch Grady Mateen of Akron, Ohio, announced that he was going to Georgetown to play for John Thompson, he said: "Coach Thompson told me Georgetown had more to offer me than I had to offer Georgetown. I liked that."
No more. Apparently Georgetown didn't offer enough playing time. Last week, Mateen quit.
Add Mateen: When he was being recruited, he said he visited the White House and walked through the Rose Garden with Nancy Reagan. He said she told him she could watch him play if he went to Georgetown.
So it goes in the capital.
Rookie Manager Lou Piniella of the New York Yankees told Milton Richman of United Press International that he's looking forward to opening day with the same eagerness he did his first start as a player after being brought up by the Kansas City Royals.
"Once I got there, I also had to prove I could stay," he said. "I went 4 for 5 my first day. Three singles and a double against the Twins. You know who was managing the Twins? Billy Martin."
Trivia Answer: UCLA lost to its freshman team, 75-60. The frosh were led by Lew Alcindor, Lucius Allen and Lynn Shackelford. Quotebook
Paul Johns, former Seattle Seahawk receiver, on why it's tougher to sell cars than play football: "There are no films of irate customers to study."