Bill Kwon

Sports Watch

By Bill Kwon

Thursday, August 5, 1999

Can Trojans keep up
with the Jones?

CHATTING about this and that while awaiting the kickoff to open Hawaii's 1999 football season against Southern California:

Already the USC online is going hot and heavy.

Said one Trojan wag, "Can June Jones Hackett?"

It's a reference, of course, to the two opposing coaches - the Rainbows' new head coach and his Trojan rival, Paul Hackett., who's back for his second year.

And you can just imagine the digs USC fans got in at UCLA's expense about the Bruin football team's handicapped-parking scam.

Which reminds me. When the Chicago Bears signed Bruin All-American quarterback Cade McNown to a 7-year, $22-million contract, did they also throw in a handicap placard? McNown had used a handicap permit during the 1997 season.


NO Monday Night Golf, please: The "Showdown at Sherwood" was an intriguing television fare and was well received, judging by the ratings. But Monday Night Football, it ain't.

Much as I love golf and the match-play format, I doubt if it'll be more than a once-a-year novelty on network television. And only during the summer at that.

The biggest problem with having such a televised showdown is that you are going to quickly run out of opponents for Tiger Woods.

That's right, opponents. Only Tiger as the featured participant can carry off such a show. There's no one else in golf with the charisma to make it work. Unless, that is, science can find a way to give us the Jack Nicklaus or Arnold Palmer of yesteryear.

ABC-TV billed it as the first prime-time golf on network television. Which it was, of course, because the catchword is "network," meaning not cable.

We in Hawaii all know that prime-time golf isn't something new. TBS televises the PGA Grand Slam of Golf on prime-time back East as does ESPN with the Sony Open in Hawaii.


HOW soon we forget: In referring to the number of those of Asian ancestry who are playing or have played in the National Football League, I overlooked Arnold Morgado, who spent four seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs.

I wasn't the only one. The NFL office, which provided a list, also didn't mention Morgado, whose mother is Japanese-American. The NFL also didn't list Hines Ward, but I knew about his background.

The league office's list obviously was far from definitive. It also missed two more players of Asian ancestry that I also omitted, as readers were quick to point out:

Bullet Roman Gabriel, who was honored by the Waipahu Filipino Association when he came here for the Hula Bowl before going on to play for the L.A. Rams and Philadelphia Eagles.

Bullet Kailee Wong, the Minnesota Vikings' second-year player out of Stanford, whose part-Chinese father, Warner Wong, grew up in Papakolea and starred for Roosevelt High School.

Not that two Wongs will make a right, but ex-Hawaii and BYU tackle Joe Wong of Kailua High School can be added to the list, if he survives the cut with the Miami Dolphins.

While we're at it, add Mel Tom, a former Maryknoll basketball star of Hawaiian-Chinese extraction who went on to play nine seasons in the NFL with the Eagles and Bears.

I'm sure there are others who can be added to the list, especially those with less than 50 percent Asian blood.

I plan to pass on all additional names to the NFL office.

Bill Kwon has been writing
about sports for the Star-Bulletin since 1959.

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