Thursday, October 9, 2003
Updated: March 7, 10:41 AM ET
Woodie's World Schedule
SUPER BOWL EDITION - Woodie examines the growth of the SUPER BOWL from his coverage of the first game in LOS ANGELES when they practically had to give away tickets - to SUPER BOWL VII in LOS ANGELES when the event had become the toughest ticket in town. We go behind the scenes to see the PACKERS get wrapped on their way to SUPER BOWL I --- and wind up in the frozen outdoors of MINNESOTA with the VIKINGS after their appearance in SUPER BOWL V.
LOMBARDI - Woodie Broun once said VINCE LOMBARDI's face "looked like the fright mask on a samurai helmet." This edition of Woodie's World, unmasks Lombardi and reveals the inner man. We follow him to Super Bowl II in Miami, where two Brooklyn-born iron-willed men, Lombardi and AL DAVIS, managing partner of the Oakland Raiders, are about to square off. Along the way we hear a little of Pavaroti in Lombardi's growl and see him storm out of retirement to take over the Washington Redskins. He died a year later of cancer at age 57. Before Super Bowl II Woodie wrote, "Long ago, Canute - king, coach and general manager of the Britons - commanded the waves to stop, but they broke through his lines. Vinnie Lombardi hasn't tried stopping the tides, but it's safe to say that if he ordered his Packers to do it, they'd drown in the attempt."
AMERICA'S TEAM - For Dallas coach TOM LANDRY, the arrival of quarterback ROGER STAUBACH, fresh from a tour of duty in Vietman, signals the beginning of a decade of Cowboy success. Landry builds a strong supporting cast for Staubach and goes to the Super Bowl five times, winning twice. Woodie Broun shows us Staubach in his Naval Academy and Vietnam days and at his first Cowboy training camp. Woodie also takes us back to that memorable Thanksgiving game when Staubach is hurt and a third-string quarterback named CLINT LONGLEY, stages a stirring comeback for Dallas. Woodie says of Landry's outwardly calm demeanor, "around him giant men covered with mud are growling and bumping and he's just sending out orders - rather like Napoleon, small but terrifying."
BOSTON HOCKEY - The Bruins had become part of the fabric of Boston life by the late 1960's. But in a city where even college hockey played in front of sellout crowds, the Bruins had not won a Stanley Cup since before World War II and their fans were becoming restless. That's when "TERRIBLE TEDDY' GREEN ignited the helmet controversy and JOHNNY BUCYK lit up the old Boston Garden and started them on the road back. BOBBY ORR's emergence as a superstar returned the cup to Boston in 1970.
Orr's winning goal was a picture for the ages. As Woodie reported, "For many years greatness in Boston hockey was measured against the towering figure of Eddie Shore. Now, amazingly, a beardless boy of 21 stands as high as history, with lots of time left to grow."
SPRING TRAINING - Broun profiles spring training candidates for major league jobs and prospects who look to make an impact in the big leagues. 21-year-old Johnny Bench signs his second major league contract with the Cincinnati Reds for $25,000. Who knew he was going to be one of the game's greats? What about the saga of 77-yr-old Tony Cucinello. He was an almost American League batting champ in 1945 who became better know as the spring training "king of the fungoes." And then there's pitchers Bo Belinsky and Dick Hall, both spring training candidates for major league jobs. Belinsky, the Hollywood playboy, doesn't make it. Hall, the college-trained accountant, does. And then there are the wanna-bes, coulda-beens, and shoulda-beens. They all show up for a last grasp at the brass ring at an open tryout held by the Montreal Expos. It's spring training as you've never seen it.
THE SWEET SCIENCE - AJ Liebling of the New Yorker Magazine wrote a book called "The Sweet Science." He viewed boxing through the New York cigar smoke and the sweaty armpits of places like Stillman's Gym, where a lot of champions were made. We weave a tapestry of Liebling and Broun with fighters like Cassius Clay, a product of the Louisville gyms. Woodie gets some original material from Muhammad Ali/Clay on a Puerto Rico beach. He also takes us to a gym above a peep show in Baltimore, where promoter Eli Hanover is handing out life lessons - and introduces us to Nino Benvenuti, the world middleweight champ from Italy with the Hollywood good looks. And Woodie is there at one of Liebling's hangouts, the old Madison Square Garden, when they close the joint down.
FOUNDING FATHERS - Art Rooney of Pittsburgh was one of the NFL originals. We are with him when he finally goes to the Super Bowl - celebrate the Franco Harris team that had "Franco's Italian Army" as rooters - tie in another of the founders, Tim Mara of New York, with a piece on the Giants" greatest fan, a fashion photog from Queens with a bunch of kids who "root, root, root for the home team." Art Rooney won his stake to buy the Steelers during one lucky summer week at the Saratoga Race Track. Woodie takes the Bus to Bowie, where others will try to win their fortunes.
IT'S ENTERTAINMENT - Another of our off-beat Woodie's Worlds - Woodie on a movie set talking to Burt Reynolds and Ray Nitschke and Joe Kapp as they film "The Longest Yard" - Woodie in Hollywood with an acting coach and LA Ram fan, who tells him how the Rams' punter can make more pratfalls pay off in penalties. Woodie also goes inside the roller derby with a couple who know how to play to a packed house - and goes ringside with a bull-baiting rodeo clown who faces danger every day he's on the job.
FOOTBALL REBELS - Woody looks back at football rebels from the 1970's. He reports on former Dallas running back Duane Thomas, St. Louis Cardinal all-pro linebacker Dave Meggyesy and Bennie Friedman from the University of Michigan.
THE RIVALS - Woodie provides perspective on rivalries. History is full of rivalry and ambiguity and contradiction. Take football rivals like Michigan-Ohio State and Yale-Harvard. Or what about Giants-Dodgers and Red Sox-Yankees. One survived a cosmic coastal shift and the other rivalry just got fiercer as the years went by. And then there's the annual track meet between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.
SECRETARIAT - Woodie's unquestioned number one athlete. We have unparalleled access to Big Red -- his owner , the cover girl Penny Tweedy -- the horse's syndicator, the legendary Clairborne Farm. Woodie's Secretariat oddysey reads like a Dick Francis detective novel. Woodie visits Secretariat's Kentucky birthplace just after the royal mating and before anyone knew who Secretartiat was - goes to Penny Tweedy's Virginia farm to see her other Kentucky Derby winner and doesn't know that Secretariat is out there romping with the other unknown horses - and provides perspective for CBS Sports on their Triple Crown telecasts of the first TC winner in 25 years. It is "living history" and pure poetry .No one covered Secretariat like Heywood Hale Broun.
THE EARL OF WEAVER - The outspoken and unshakeable manager of the Baltimore Orioles keeps telling us in interviews that is only a matter of time before he loses his job. And that is while he is riding high with the defending World Series champs and tending to his tomato patch. We have graphic proof that Weaver was tossed out of more games than any other major league manager. WS MVP Brooks Robinson -- Frank Robinson - Jim Palmer - were all very young back then when Palmer,. McNally and Cuellar won 20 games in the same season.
BOYS FROM FENWAY - The saga of the Red Sox in the summer of 1967. A very shy owner, Tom Yawkey, says "these young fellas believe in themselves." Coach Bobby Doerr, a Red Sox lifer, says he's never seen the fans this excited. Woodie watches the season play out - Jim Lonborg, the victor, then the excruciating loss in the World Series. The next spring we're with the Yaz and Dom DiMaggio. Then we spend some time with the pioneering all-sports Boston radio show, Sports Huddle, doing a labotomy on their not-so-beloved Bosox.
MIRACLE METS - The dramatic 1969 season as seen NOT through the eyes of Tom Seaver, Jerry Koosman and Gil Hodges - but as lived by Karl Ehrhardt, a sign-waving graphic artist and fixture behind the 3rd base dugout, who had influence on the Mets- by Joan Payson, the dowager owner and fixture behind the Mets 1st base dugout, who strutted out of Shea when the team finally reached first place - by an original Met, Ed Kranepool, who saw the team go from laughable to loveable - and, of course, by Woodie Broun whose unique wordsmanship depicts the team's rise from rags to riches.
THE FUNNIES - A tongue-in-cheek look at some memorable figures in American sport, among them ALEX KARRAS, a wise-cracking all-pro defensive tackle for the Detroit Lions and GORILLA MONSOON, a 400-pound professional wrestler who loved to play "the villain" and work the pro wrestling crowds into a lather.
Karras starred in such send-up movies as "Paper Lion" and "Blazing Saddles and served as the resident wit on ABC's Monday Night Football. When the Detroit Free Press wanted a different kind of reporting from Super Bowl VI, Karras was a logical choice. As Woodie Broun reports, "Registering at Super Bowl headquarters, Karras arouses nervous merriment like a bear banging on car windows at Yellowstone."
HEISMAN WINNERS - Winning the award is no guarantee of success in the pros. It can be a slippery slope that awaits the winner. This edition of WOODIE'S WORLD takes a look at four Heisman winners and four very different career paths.
For JOHN HUARTE of Notre Dame, GARY BEBAN of UCLA and JOHNNY RODGERS of Nebraska, the NFL was not a welcoming experience.
While for OJ SIMPSON, a breakout running back and a no-miss future pro star during his senior year at USC in 1968, the Heisman helped him become, as Woodie tells us, "the first black athlete to reach the end of the Madison Avenue rainbow."
BASEBALL INNOVATIONS - Except for the designated hitter, baseball has had few rules changes over the years. But artificial turf, computerized scoreboards and colorful uniforms have changed the way fans look at the game. Ted Williams and Joe DiMaggio have reservations about the glitz while observing Charlie Finley's antics in Oakland. George Toma, the groundskeeper supreme in Kansas City, doesn't like losing his field of dreams. And Woodie Broun isn't particularly fond of a scoreboard telling him when to yell. Lamenting the changing face of the game, Woodie observes, "Long ago hard core fans did their own bursting among the stars. But for many of those old timers, the burnt out rockets lie among the rubble of Ebbetts Field, Braves Field, the Polo Grounds and a host of other ghostly stadia."
THEY WERE FAMILY - Deals with the interconnection of sports-minded parents and their children. When Press Maravich put up a hoop in the backyard, he set the stage for Pete Maravich to become one of the most dazzling ball-handlers and scorers college basketball has ever known. Their often tempestuous relationship led them both to LSU, where Press was the coach and Pete the pupil. Jim Evert, a tennis pro in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, had five tennis-playing children. Chris Evert was the first and best, a teenage sensation who won 18 Grand Slam titles. Of the Maraviches, Woodie observed, "The diverse elements which can create disharmony between fathers and sons have filled a number of indigestible books. But for Press Maravich and his son Pete, the drumbeat dribble of a basketball has set a tempo to which they can march in step."
STRIVERS - Athletes in the pursuit of excellence, often against formidable odds. Jimmy Piersall was a striver. He was a talented centerfielder for the Boston Red Sox who had to overcome a bout of mental illness and the taunts of other players and fans. Piersall overcame and wrote a best seller, "Fear Strikes Out." Woodie caught up to him as he started a new career managing in the minors. Salt Walther was an Indianapolis 500 rookie when his car was involved in one of the worst wrecks in the history of the race. Badly burned, he was lucky to be alive. But after painful skin grafts, he made it to the Indie starting line again. Chris Taylor was a fat kid who grew up with health problems. But nobody laughed when he grew to 455 pounds and won the NCAA heavyweight wrestling championship for Iowa State. Strivers all, Woodie rejoiced in their triumphs.
WOMEN PIONEERS - Females were beginning to break down barriers in the late 1960's and 70's. A horse named Ruffian, generally regarded as the greatest filly of them all, became a symbol for the women's movement when she challenged the Kentucky Derby winner in the biggest match raced since Seabiscuit beat War Admiral. 18-million television viewers, a huge audience back then, gasped as Ruffian broke her leg and had to be euthenized. A women's U.S. Open champion, Carol Mann, challenged the British Open runnerup, Doug Sanders. Organized baseball gave its first tryout to a woman. And a female high school basketball from Iowa saw her name picked in the NBA draft. Woodie took his prose to each of those venues and provided perspective on a major sociological story of that era.
SPEED RULES - Woodie gives us speed from four different perspectives --- the speed of Jimmy Hines, the world's fastest human and the first to break ten seconds in the hundred meters, as tries to become a speed-burning wide receiver for the Miami Dolphins. He had one flaw, he could run but he couldn't catch. Or how about the speed of Sir Stirling Moss, the Grand Prix champion and British driving icon? Sir Stirling takes Woodie on a white-knuckle ride. As Moss put it, "I just want to have a go." We visit the speed of Lou Brock, in the midst of his NL base-stealing record year for the St Lou Cardinals. And we catch up with the endurance speed of runners in every category when the granddaddy of them all, the Boston Marathon, was still kind of a local race. In every case, SPEED RULES.
YANCY AND JOE - Joe Frazier was a pudgy meatcutter from South Carolina when he walked into a Philadelphia gym in the early 1960's and ran into a boxing lifer, Yank Durham, a railroad mechanic by trade and a trainer looking for a heavyweight hopeful. What followed was a remarkable friendship that took the pair to the Olympic championship and then the world heavyweight title. We pick up the story in 1966 at one of Joe's early fights in Los Angeles and followe him thru fights with Buster Mathis, Jerry Quarry, Jimmy Ellis and Ali-Frazier I. They were a remarkable pair until Durham died suddenly in 1973 after Joe lost his championship to George Foreman. Woodie's obit tells it all, a story of complete trust - then total loss. It is a story that television has never told.
HAMMERIN' HANK - Woodie follows Hank Aaron from 1972, when Aaron vocally supports the first brief baseball strike endangering his pursuit of the Ruthian record, right thru the record itself and on to his nostalgic return to Milwaukee in 1975 to play a final season for the Brewers in the town where he cut his homerun teeth as a Milwaukee Brave. There are pieces with his brother Tommy, a sometime Brave who suffered by comparison to his big brother and an off-season profile of Hank enjoying his new-found notariety. Woodie also raises the racism issues that dogged Aaron's career. Some good one-on-one interviews.
ROGER STAUBACH - fresh from a tour of duty in Vietman, signals the beginning of a decade of Cowboy success. Landry builds a strong supporting cast for Staubach and goes to the Super Bowl five times, winning twice. Woodie Broun shows us Staubach in his Naval Academy and Vietnam days and at his first Cowboy training camp. Woodie also takes us back to that memorable Thanksgiving game when Staubach is hurt and a third-string quarterback named CLINT LONGLEY, stages a stirring comeback for Dallas. Woodie says of Landry's outwardly calm demeanor, "around him giant men covered with mud are growling and bumping and he's just sending out orders - rather like Napoleon, small but terrifying."
WW03012 - Woodie goes to NIAGARA to check on the progress of CALVIN MURPHY, perhaps the greatest little man in college basketball history and the leading scorer in the country - Everyone is complaining that field goals are making the NFL game boring. Kickers are kicking them farther than ever. So Woodie goes to the factory in CHICAGO where the footballs are made and wonders if they're filling them with helium. Kicker GARO YEPREMIAN of MIAMI wonder what all the fuss is about. --The KILGORE RANGERETTES light up the COTTON BOWL with their halftime show spurred on their Lombardi-like coach - International tuna men come to NOVA SCOTIA to bag the big one and come up empty.
WW03011 - An inside look at the life and times of AL MCGUIRE, NCAA coach of the year at MARQUETTE, a no-nonsense street-smart mentor - JIM BOUTON, HOUSTON ASTRO pitcher and author of baseball's first tell-all book, "BALL FOUR." Teammates love it and hate it.-A 43-year-old grandfather makes the UNIVERSITY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE football team. ED KRYSIAK is a Navy veteran of three wars and the father of six children.
WW03010 - Woodie gets in the booth with HARRY CARAY, the gregarious ST LOUIS CARDINAL annnouncer, and listens to him spin the game to a wide Midwestern audience - NO SAINTS ot DON TALBERT and LA RAMS dt DIRON TALBERT go toe-to-toe as Dad roots and Mom winces in the stands - U.S. Open champ CAROL MANN brings high fashion to the drab lady's golf tour - the HARVARD-YALE crew race, oldest intercollegiate rivalry in any sport with a surprise ending by our man Woodie.
WW03009 - WILT CHAMBERLAIN turns from scoring machine to defensive giant as his PHILA 76ERS win the NBA title - MIKE REID, an All American tackle at PENN STATE for JOE PATERNO shows Woodie why he's also an All American classical pianist - A trip to GRAMBLING, LA, turns up JR RICHARD, a high school pheenom who is being pursued by major league scouts. He will become a fire-balling strikeout king for the Houston Astros. - ALEX KARRAS hosts a laugh-filled golf tournament in FENTON, MICHIGAN nicknamed the "Distraction Open." Golf, as it has never been played before.
WW03008 - Woodie goes to the MASTERS, where he is barred for his irreverence and winds up peeking around trees looking a bit like Sherlock Holmes. Masters chairman Clifford Roberts defends the company line. - PHILA EAGLE fans rise up against coach JOE KUHARICH. "Joe Must Go" club gives him the boot.-MANUEL YCAZA, the rough-riding, most-injured, most-penalized jockey gives Woodie a piece of Latin attitude - COURT TENNIS, a game played by monks in the 16th Century and the little Basque who ruled it for 25 years.
WW03007 - Events leading up to SUPER BOWL III in Miami. JOE NAMATH and Woodie rap about the qb's persona and confidence that the JETS will score the upset. - MONTREAL opens its arms to the expansion EXPOS of RUSTY STAUB and Cocoa Laboy - A gritty sailor defies the odds and finishes the SINGLEHANDED TRANSATLANTIC YACHT RACE in a 30-foot trimaran, taking remarkable pictures with our camera.
WW03006 - Woodie visits EDWARD BENNETT WILLIAMS' owners box to watch him entertain the high and mighty of WASHINGTON politics, as GEORGE ALLEN leads a REDSKINS resurgence - Jack Fleck and BEN HOGAN return to the scene of their epic U.S OPEN battle of 1955, which Fleck won in a playoff denying Hogan a record fifth Open title - BILL VEECK, the maverick baseball owner talks about why he left the game to get into horse racing in BOSTON, bringing us the first race restricted to women jockeys. - Woodie rhapsodizes about his favorite athlete, SECRETARIAT, in retirement at a breeding farm in Kentucky.
WW03005 - NASCAR'S PETTY dynasty, LEE and RICHARD, tell Woodie about Revenue Agents chasin' hooch on the back roads of North Carolina - TONY CONIGLIARO of the BOSTON RED SOX tries to come back from a near-fatal beaning - MARCEL CERDAN JR tries to follow his famous father as world middleweight champ - Woodie returns to his alma mater to watch Swarthmore defeat Haverford on the day the rest of the nation is watching Mich St and Notre Dame play to infamous 10-10 tie with national championship at stake.
WW03004 - ERNIE BANKS and the 1969 CHICAGO CUBS appear headed for the postseason and their "Bleacher Bums" are out in force. - Woodie visits the set of the "Paper Lion," as George Plimpton's novel is made into a movie starring ALAN ALDA, ALEX KARRAS and a Coliseum full of LIONS. - Woodie talks to JOHNNY UNITAS and the BALTIMORE COLTS who protect him. - The Irish sport of hurling is big in Cork, Kerry and the Bronx, NY.
WW03003 - JOE DIMAGGIO resurfaces as a coach with the OAKLAND A'S shortly after Simon and Garfunkel wonder where he went. - Woodie reminisces about his days as a sports writer covering DiMaggio's 56-game hitting streak - OLD MISS quarterback ARCHIE MANNING is celebrated in song as the school mounts his Heisman Trophy campaign - The craziness of a 24-hour marathon professional swim meet in the little town of LA TUQUE, QUEBEC.
WW03002 - MUHAMMAD ALI returns from exile for his 1st fight on the road to regaining the title and tells Woodie, "I said a few things I shouldn't have said, runnin' my mouth." - BILL MAZEROSKI, whose 1960 homerun won a World Series for Pittsburgh, survives into the next decade to lead a zany group of PIRATES - BALTIMORE COLTS owner CARROLL ROSENBLOOM spars with a hexer who wants him to pay for good vibes - or else. The all-time U.S. walking champ, RON LAIRD, shows why his quirky style has gotten him into trouble.
WW03001 -TED WILLIAMS returns to baseball in 1969 for the first time since his playing days and faces the impossible task of managing the hapless Washington Senators - GREEN BAY'S neighbor, Manitowoc WI has the oldest minor league football franchise and an unusual alliance with a convent school - KC CHIEF'S kick returner NOLAND SMITH earns the nickname "Super Gnat" and a Super Bowl ring - HOBBY HORSE HALL is a racetrack in the Bahamas w/teen jockeys and a calypso beat.