Of Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Fleischman of the Philadelphia Daily News wrote, “As those familiar with him know, he has an opinion on everything.
“Take Proposition 48. Chamberlain believes athletes who are not destined to become philosophers or aerospace engineers should be allowed to study trades in college while they play sports.
“ ‘There’s nothing wrong with being an electrician or a plumber,’ he said. ‘Have you ever tried to find one when you need one?’ ”
Now-It-Can-Be-Told Dept.: To supplement his income before he became a major league manager, Joe Morgan of the Boston Red Sox took a number of off-season jobs, including one as a snowplow operator on the Massachusetts Turnpike.
“Mostly we plowed for money,” Morgan said. “It’s unbelievable near the toll booths how much folding money you can find.”
ABC’s Reggie Jackson, playing his Mr. October role to the hilt, keeps telling how the great ones rise to the occasion in the postseason.
Fact is, although he was dynamite in World Series play, Jackson rarely distinguished himself in playoffs. In 11 of them, he hit .227 in 45 games, with 6 home runs. In 2 playoffs with the Angels, he hit .111 and .192, with 1 homer.
Trivia Time: Who was the only man to play for the New York Giants in their 23-17 overtime loss to the Baltimore Colts in the 1958 NFL championship game and for the New York Jets 10 years later in their 16-7 victory over the Colts in Super Bowl III? (Answer to follow.)
Kirk Gibson, who is one of a number of Dodgers who have been riding the subway between Shea Stadium and their Manhattan hotel, said he also took the subway when he played for the Detroit Tigers.
“We took it to Yankee Stadium all the time,” he said. “The first time, though, we got on the express and it went right by the place. I looked up and I saw right field whizzing by.”
From New England Patriots punter Jeff Feagles, who played for the Scottsdale (Ariz.) Community College Artichokes: “We were known as the Chokes for short.”
Detroit Red Wings Coach Jacques Demers says that Wayne Gretzky makes every player on the Kings 20% better, but he doesn’t call him the best in the game.
“If you asked me 3 or 4 years ago who is the best player, there is no question I would have said Wayne Gretzky,” Demers said. “But right now the best hockey player in the world is Mario Lemieux. He’s taken over. He’s the most talented.”
Jimmy Carson, who went to Edmonton in the Gretzky deal, had this to say about linemate Jari Kurri after the Oilers opened with a 5-1 victory over the New York Islanders: “This guy is an underrated superstar. He’s just a treat to play with. He’s a great passer, shooter, scorer, plays well defensively. He does everything, and I’m in paradise playing with him.”
60 Years Ago Today: On Oct. 9, 1928, Babe Ruth hit 3 home runs as the New York Yankees beat the St. Louis Cardinals, 7-3, to complete a four-game World Series sweep. Ruth, despite a lame ankle, hit .625 and scored 9 runs in the series. Lou Gehrig hit .545, with 4 homers and 9 RBIs.
Trivia Answer: Don Maynard.
Buffalo Bills Coach Marv Levy, on why running back Ronnie Harmon wasn’t talking to the media: “I don’t know; he doesn’t talk to me either.”