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1992: Sports; social issues and crime; folkways; fashion; holidays.

Women and members of minority groups were not doing well in NCAA Division I athletic departments, according to a report by the federal General Accounting Office. For example, total earnings of a head coach of men's basketball were more than twice that of a head coach of women's basketball. Few blacks were found to hold key positions in athletic departments. In professional sports a survey showed that football is now the favorite sport to watch on TV, with 38% favoring it, compared with 16% for baseball and 12% for basketball. Baseball viewership fell 24% among young men aged 12 to 17, while NBA viewership was up 31% and NFL 16%. This trend was also evident in attendance at major league baseball games in the 1992 season, with a drop of nearly 600,000 in the National League and about 325,000 in the American League. On the other hand, owners of teams in professional sports seemed to be doing all right. The New York Yankees baseball franchise was at the top of the list, being valued at $200,000,000. For the first time the average salary of a major league baseball player passed the $1,000,000 mark. Crime figures were also impressive--or depressing. The U.S. held in prison a higher percentage of its population than any other nation. The 1,100,000 inmates represented an incarceration rate of 455 people per 100,000. In late October the 27th execution in the U.S. this year took place in North Carolina, marking the highest number of executions since 1962, when 47 convicts were put to death. News of weapons was not all in the lethal category. More powerful water guns, able to throw a stream 50 feet, became the rage. All was not peaceful in the field of fashion, either. The New York City consumer affairs commissioner attacked designers and producers of beauty products for not using enough members of minority groups in their advertising. The designers, meanwhile, solved the problem of skirt length by featuring pants for women; but while the women covered up, men bared almost all when they modeled underwear at a fashion show of a leading designer. Notable persons who died during the year included Sandy Amoros, hero of the 1955 World Series as starter of a spectacular double play, June 27, at 62; Walter "Red" Barber, most popular of sports broadcasters over a 33-year career, Oct. 27, at 84; Danny Biasone, professional basketball team owner who devised the 24-second shot clock to make the game more exciting, May 25, at 83; Easley Blackwood, leading contract bridge expert who invented the Blackwood convention as a bidding device in 1933, Mar. 27, at 89; Anita Colby, called the first "supermodel" and who wrote on beauty, Mar. 27, at 77; Mel Hein, iron man center and line-backer of the pro football Giants in the 1930s and 1940s, Jan. 31, at 82; Billy Herman, second baseman of the Brooklyn Dodgers and a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame, Sept. 5, at 83; Eddie Lopat, star pitcher for the New York Yankees for five championship years, June 15, at 73; Mollie Parnis, designer whose dresses were worn by several First Ladies, July 18, at 90+; Samuel Reshevsky, chess grandmaster, Apr. 4, at 80; Anthony "Fat Tony" Salerno, boss of the Genovese crime family, in prison since 1989, July 27, at 80; Carl Stotz, who founded Little League baseball in 1938, June 4, at 82; and Jean R. Yawkey, majority owner of the Boston Red Sox and a philanthropist, Feb. 26, at 83.

Jan. 1

In college football bowl games, the results were Florida State 10, Texas A&M 2 in the Cotton Bowl; Miami 22, Nebraska 0 in the Orange Bowl; Washington 34, Michigan 14 in the Rose Bowl; and Notre Dame 30, Florida 28 in the Sugar Bowl. The AP and The New York Times selected Miami as the national collegiate champions of 1991, but the UPI and USA Today/CNN polls chose Washington.

Jan. 8

The NCAA adopted stricter academic standards for athletes. The changes would require incoming freshman athletes to have a higher grade-point average than before in core subjects in high school, and would strengthen the requirement that athletes show progress toward a degree.

Jan. 9-11

U.S. figure skating championships were won in Orlando, Fla., by Christopher Bowman, men's singles; Kristi Yamaguchi, women's singles; Calla Urbanski and Rocky Marval, pairs; April Sargent- Thomas and Russ Witherby, dance.

Jan. 18

Pat Bradley became only the 12th member of the LPGA Hall of Fame, having won the required 30 tournament victories during her career. Bradley had also won more prize money--$4,109,165--than any other female golfer.

Jan. 26

Super Bowl XXVI was won by the Washington Redskins (NFC) who defeated the Buffalo Bills (AFC) 37-24. On Jan. 12 the Redskins had beaten the Detroit Lions 41-10 for the NFC title and the Bills defeated the Denver Broncos 10-7 for the AFC title.

Feb. 8-23

At the XVIth Winter Olympic Games, held in Albertville, France, the U.S. finished sixth in the medal standings, winning five gold medals and 11 in total. All the gold medals were won by women: Bonnie Blair, two in speed skating; Kristi Yamaguchi, figure skating; Cathy Turner, 500-meter race; and Donna Weinbrecht, mogul skiing.

Feb. 10

Former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson was convicted of rape in Indianapolis, Ind., and on Mar. 26 was sentenced to six years in prison. He had been charged with raping an 18-year-old beauty pageant contestant on July 19, 1991.

Feb. 17

Martina Navratilova won her 158th tennis title, more than any other player, male or female. She took her first championship in Czechoslovakia in 1973.

Mar. 2

Ryne Sandberg became the highest paid player in professional baseball when he signed a contract with the Chicago Cubs (NL) worth $28,400,000 over four years. On Aug. 24 Cal Ripken, Jr., of the Baltimore Orioles (AL) became the second-highest paid player when he signed a five-year contract worth $30,500,000.

Mar. 18

The NFL abandoned the instant replay for the 1992 season. In effect for five seasons, the system allowed officials with TV monitors to review a play and confirm or overturn the on-field officials' decisions. The instant replay was criticized for slowing the pace of the game.

Apr. 5

The NCAA women's basketball championship was won by Stanford, which defeated Western Kentucky 78-62.

Apr. 6

The NCAA men's basketball championship was won by Duke, which defeated Michigan 71-51.

Apr. 8

Arthur Ashe, the black tennis champion and rights activist, revealed that he had contracted AIDS, apparently from a blood transfusion. In 1968 Ashe had become the first and only black man to win the U.S. tennis championship, and in 1975, the British title.

Apr. 9

Manuel Antonio Noriega, the former dictator of Panama, was convicted in a federal court on eight counts of cocaine trafficking, racketeering, and money laundering. He had surrendered to U.S. forces Jan. 3, 1990, during an invasion of Panama by American troops. On July 10 he was sentenced to 40 years in prison.

Apr. 10

The key figure in a major savings and loan scandal, Charles H. Keating, Jr., was sentenced to ten years in prison for having duped about 23,000 depositors of the Lincoln Savings and Loan Association, which he headed, into buying high-risk junk bonds. On July 10 a federal jury ordered Keating to pay $3,300,000,000 in damage claims. On Mar. 30 an accounting firm and a law firm, involved in the financial scandal, had agreed to pay $87,000,000 in damages.

Apr. 10

The first professional hockey strike in the history of the NHL, a ten-day walkout, ended with an agreement between the owners and the Players Association effective through the 1992-1993 season. Among the terms of the new agreement were the establishment of a minimum salary of $100,000, up from $25,000, and an increase in regular season games from 80 to 84.

Apr. 12

The Masters golf tournament was won by Fred Couples by two strokes. It was his first major title in his 12-year career.

Apr. 20

The 96th Boston Marathon was won in the men's division by Ibrahim Hussein of Kenya, with a time of 2 hrs., 8 min., 14 sec. Olga Markova of Russia won the women's division with a time of 2 hrs., 23 min., 43 sec. Both times were the second fastest ever run on the course.

Apr. 22

In a major sexual abuse case, the operator of a day care center in Edenton, N.C., was convicted on 99 charges of sexually abusing children. The trial of Robert F. Kelly, Jr., operator of the Little Rascals Day Care Center, lasted eight months, the longest and costliest ever in North Carolina.

Apr. 29

A bloody and destructive riot in south central Los Angeles broke out after four policemen were acquitted of beating a black man while making an arrest, even though the incident had been videotaped by a bystander. In all, 51 persons died, 30 of them homicide victims. Nearly 1800 people were injured, and 6345 were arrested. In the three days of disorder 3767 buildings were burned.

May 1

The 118th Kentucky Derby was won by Lil E. Tee with a time of 2:03. The jockey was Pat Day.

May 9-16

The America's Cup was successfully defended by America 3, which defeated the Italian yacht Moro di Venezia four races to one, off San Diego, Calif.

May 16

The 117th Preakness Stakes was won by Pine Bluff, with a time of 1:55 3/5. The jockey was Chris McCarron.

May 17

The LPGA golf tournament was won by Betsy King, whose four round total of 267 was the lowest ever for this event.

May 24

The 76th Indianapolis 500 auto race was won by Al Unser, Jr., completing the 500-mile course in 3 hrs., 43 min., 4.991 sec., with an average speed of 134. 479 mph. Unser won by only .043 sec., a record margin, and his was the eighth victory by a member of his family.

June 1

The NHL Stanley Cup was won for the second consecutive year by the Pittsburgh Penguins, who defeated the Chicago Blackhawks in four straight games.

June 6

The 124th Belmont Stakes was won by A. P. Indy, with a time of 2:26. The jockey was Eddie Delahoussaye.

June 6

The second World League of American Football championship was won by the Sacramento Surge, defeating the Orlando Thunder 21-17.

June 11

The first foreign ownership of a major league baseball team by non-North Americans came about when the Seattle Mariners (AL) were sold for $125,000,000 to a seven-member group that included the president of the Nintendo Co. of Japan.

June 14

The NBA basketball championship was won for the second consecutive year by the Chicago Bulls, who defeated the Portland Trail Blazers four games to two.

June 21

The U.S. Open golf tournament was won by Tom Kite by two strokes.

June 23

John Gotti, head of the Gambino crime family, was sentenced to life imprisonment in federal court in Brooklyn, N.Y. He had been convicted on Apr. 2 on 13 counts, including murder, conspiracy, tax fraud, and obstruction of justice.

July 5

At the Wimbledon tennis championships in England, Andre Agassi won the title in five sets over Goran Ivaniasevic of Croatia. Agassi was the first American to win this title since 1984.

July 11

Tracy Austin, 29, became the youngest inductee of the International Tennis Hall of Fame in a ceremony at Newport, R.I. Austin, at age 16, had in 1979 become the youngest U.S. Open champion. However, an injury suffered in an auto accident halted her career in 1989.

July 14

The baseball All-Star Game was won by the American League over the National League, 13-6.

July 23

Judit Polgar, the youngest person ever to earn the rank of chess grandmaster, celebrated her 16th birthday. She had achieved this ranking the previous Dec. There were only 401 active grandmasters in the world.

July 24

George Steinbrenner was returned to control of the New York Yankee baseball club as of Mar. 1, 1993. The principal owner of the team, he had been banned from major league baseball on July 30, 1990, by Fay Vincent, commissioner of Major League Baseball, for having paid a known gambler to try to secure discrediting information about a Yankee player, Dave Winfield. Settlement of a number of legal and other matters led Vincent to rescind the ban.

July 25-Aug. 9

At the 25th Summer Olympic Games in Barcelona, Spain, the U.S. finished second in medal winnings with 37 gold and 108 in all. The Unified Team, representing 12 of the former U.S.S.R. republics, was first with 45 gold and 112 in all. Among American winners were: Gail Devers, who won the gold medal in the 100-meter dash 18 months after she came near having her feet amputated as a result of radiation treatment for Graves' disease; Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who for the second time won the gold in the heptathlon; Mike Conley, who set an Olympic record of 57 ft., 10.5 in. in the triple jump; and Carl Lewis, who won his eighth gold medal in three Olympics as part of the 400-meter relay team. The Americans who attracted the most attention were the members of the basketball "Dream Team," composed for the first time almost entirely of professionals from the NBA. They defeated all their opponents by an average of almost 44 points a game. They were also considered arrogant and selfish, enjoying such luxuries as chartered planes and lavish hotel rooms.

July 27

The U.S. Women's Open golf tournament was won by Betsy Sheehan, who defeated Juli Inkster by two strokes in an 18-hole playoff.

Aug. 2

The Baseball Hall of Fame inducted pitcher Tom Seaver; Rollie Fingers, pitcher; Hal Newhouser, pitcher; and Bill McGowan, umpire. Seaver, in his first year of eligibility, received the highest percentage (98.8%) of the votes ever cast for a player.

Aug. 11

Abandoning its neutral position on abortion, the American Bar Association voted to oppose laws that restrict women's rights in this matter. The vote in the House of Delegates was 276-168.

Aug. 16

The PGA championship was won by Nick Price of Zimbabwe by three strokes. It was his first major title.

Sept. 5

A world record in the decathlon of 8891 points was set by Dan O'Brien at a meet in Talence, France. He bettered the previous 1984 record by 44 points.

Sept. 7

Baseball commissioner Fay Vincent resigned, bowing to the demands of the club owners. On Sept. 3 the owners had voted, 18-9 with one abstention, to ask him to leave office. On Sept. 9 Bud Selig of the Milwaukee Brewers (AL) was chosen by the owners to be chairman of the executive council, in effect taking over from Vincent temporarily. The owners felt Vincent had been too independent and would not be firm enough in upcoming labor negotiations with the players.

Sept. 9

Robin Yount of the Milwaukee Brewers (AL) made his 3000th career hit, becoming the 17th player in the history of major league baseball to achieve this feat. On Oct. 1 George Brett of the Kansas City Royals (AL) joined this exclusive group.

Sept. 10

The NFL free-agent system was ruled illegal by a federal court jury. Under the so-called Plan B, the teams were able to prevent their best players from joining other teams for more money. Damages totaling $1,629,000 were awarded to four of the plaintiffs under the antitrust laws. The outlawed rule had meant that the best players never achieved free agency during the peaks of their careers.

Sept. 12-13

The U.S. Open tennis championships were won by Monica Seles in the women's division and by Stefan Edberg in the men's division. Both repeated their 1991 victories.

Sept. 17

Little League Baseball stripped a Philippine team of the title it had won in the league's World Series on Aug. 29. The Zamboanga team was forced to forfeit its championship because in the series it had used players from other teams. Such a decision, never before made, gave the title to the team from Long Branch, Calif., which represented the U.S. and had lost the final game to Zamboanga, 15-4.

Sept. 17

Operation of the World League of American football was suspended by the NFL for one year after two years of play. Expansion of the NFL by two teams was also delayed until at least 1994. Both decisions were based on labor unrest, with owners and players at odds on several issues. When and if the World League resumed play it was expected that more European and fewer American teams would be involved.

Sept. 19

The Miss America title was won by Leanza Cornett, 21, of Jacksonville, Fla., at the annual pageant in Atlantic City, N.J.

Sept. 20

Ray Floyd became the first golfer to win tournaments in the same year on both the regular and the Senior PGA tour when he was the victor in a Senior tournament played in Indianapolis, Ind. He had won the Doral-Ryder tournament on the regular tour on Mar. 8.

Sept. 20

The first unassisted triple play in the National League in 65 years was made by Mickey Morandini, second baseman of the Philadelphia Phillies, in a game against the Pirates at Pittsburgh.

Sept. 23

In an advance for women in professional sports, Manon Rheaume became the first woman to play in one of the four major professional sports (baseball, football, basketball, ice hockey) when she appeared as goaltender for the Tampa Bay Lightning in an exhibition ice hockey game. She played one period, faced nine shots, and allowed two goals.

Oct. 11

LeRoy Walker became the first black president of the U.S. Olympic Committee. Walker had been treasurer of the U.S.O.C., head coach of the men's track and field team for the 1976 Olympics, and chancellor of North Carolina Central University.

Oct. 17-24

The World Series was won by the Toronto Blue Jays (AL), who defeated the Atlanta Braves (NL) four games to two. On Oct. 14 the Blue Jays had won the American League pennant, beating the Oakland Athletics four games to two, and the Braves had won the National League championship, defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates four games to three. For the first time a team located outside the U.S. won the series, although no player on the Blue Jays was a Canadian.

Nov. 1

The 23rd New York City Marathon was won in the men's division by Willi Mtolo of South Africa, with a time of 2 hrs., 9 min., 29 sec. The women's division was won by Lisa Ondieki of Australia, with a time of 2 hrs., 24 min., 40 sec., a new course record for women.
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Article Details
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Author:Carruth, Gorton
Publication:Encyclopedia of American Facts & Dates, 9th ed.
Article Type:Reference Source
Date:Jan 1, 1993
Previous Article:1991: Sports; social issues and crime; folkways; fashion; holidays.

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