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SPORTS NOTEBOOK : Allen Cancels Intra-Squad Game for Lack of Linemen

Coach George Allen has canceled the annual Cal State Long Beach spring intra-squad football game because of a lack of defensive linemen.

“To try to play the game would be impossible,” Allen said Wednesday. “You couldn’t have two teams.”

The game had been scheduled for Saturday, May 12, at 1 p.m. at Veterans Stadium.

“Yesterday we only had five defensive lineman who could practice,” Allen said. “We only had six to start with, and I got two guys to walk on. And a lot of them have bumps and bruises.”

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Traditionally, the spring game on the last day of practice is put on in a festive picnic atmosphere for the purpose of displaying the team to fans and boosters.

Steve Janisch, assistant sports information director, said: “I’m sure we’ll have a semi-controlled scrimmage or something to get the fans out there.”

Allen has been concentrating on special teams in practice. He said he has been impressed with the 49er receivers and running backs and that the offensive line is improving.

But he hasn’t the slightest idea who will play quarterback when the 49ers open the season Sept. 1 at Clemson. “None of them have any game experience,” Allen said of Richard Burns, Bill Grudza, Steve Kennan, Bobby San Jose and Todd Studer.

Allen perused the Clemson media guide the other night. “I looked at it before I went to bed,” he said. “My wife said, ‘If you read that you’re not going to be able to sleep.’ ”

He marveled at Clemson’s depth: “They have defensive linemen coming out of their ears.”

Allen was in Washington Tuesday for a meeting with President Bush to promote May as “National Fitness and Sports Month.”

“I threw three ringers (playing horseshoes) on the White House lawn,” Allen said.

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49ers in Final Four: The sport is men’s volleyball, and No. 1-ranked Cal State Long Beach will try for an NCAA championship this weekend at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va.

The 49ers are 27-6 and in the Final Four for the first time since 1973, when they lost the title game to San Diego State.

The 49er women’s team won the NCAA title earlier this year.

Long Beach will play Rutgers-Newark (27-14) in a semifinal game Friday at 2:30 p.m. PDT. In the other match, USC (23-5) will play Ball State (27-10). The finals are Saturday at 4:30 p.m. PDT.

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The 49ers, who beat UCLA for the Western Intercollegiate Volleyball Assn. title last weekend, have two outstanding outside hitters: Brent Hilliard, a freshman from Dana Point who has 688 kills, and Mark Kerins, a senior from Huntington Beach who has 523.

The 49ers are coached by Ray Ratelle, who is in his ninth season.

Chapman Hires Currey: Chapman College of Orange has hired Dave Currey, a former Cal State Long Beach football coach, as athletic director.

Currey, 46, an assistant at UCLA last season, was 40-36 at Long Beach from 1977 through 1983.

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He left to become coach at the University of Cincinnati.


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