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Baltimore County couldn't have named its new indoor/outdoor soccer facility at the North Point Government Center after a more deserving citizen than John T. Marron, who has spent most of his life working with youth in Parks and Recreation in soccer, basketball, tennis and other sports. About 300 attended a dedication ceremony last week, and just ahead on the project is the installation of AstroTurf and lights for year-round play.
* Here's an item that should have you gasping in disbelief for a while: It seems five kids, playing for a high school football team in the suburbs of the Big Apple, staged a series of burglaries, their haul including a rifle, during a couple of nights of "wilding." They were apprehended and now have felony convictions on their record and are awaiting sentencing.
Meanwhile, the school they attend, reasoning that the burglaries weren't on school property, gave permission for the kids to play . . . and the coach used them. Maybe the parents have been on vacation.
* Memo to Maryland: If you guys are looking for a sure win and a sixth home game, place a call to Prairie View A&M.; The school in Texas just lost its 44th straight game by a 70-20 count to always-loaded Tarleton State, tying an NCAA Division I record held exclusively by Columbia (the Ivy League institution, not the broadcasting school).
* The Washington Bullets media guide has a half-dozen shirts on its cover, numbers 24-4-40-34-3 and 5. They belong to Tom Gugliotta, Scott Skiles, Calbert Cheaney, Don MacLean, Rex Chapman and, perhaps someday, Juwan Howard. Howard? Is leaving Kevin Duckworth off designed to inspire him?
* On-line technology comes to All-Star game voting, the NFL providing more than 2 million Prodigy members with a player-selection ballot for the 50th Pro Bowl next February. This is the latest attempt to get fans interested in the Pro Bowl, which is well-nigh impossible.
* Good news for you bubble gum card collectors (with fat wallets). The Michael Jordan limited edition rookie baseball card (he played Double-A ball) is going for $20 (plus $4 for postage and handling), and you can order as many of them as you want.
* Who says the quality of mercy is not strained? Penn State was laying it on Indiana the other day when, during the late going, it called off the dogs and the Hoosiers ended up getting beat just 35-29. As a result of the Nittany Lions' compassion, probably, the coaches turned on them with impunity and replaced them at the top of their weekly poll with Nebraska. As State coach Joe Paterno always says, "It's only the last poll that counts, anyway."
* The national high school records for touchdown passes in a season, 56, and in a career, 127, came down last weekend. Time was when the best passer in a high school didn't necessarily play football but was the star of the basketball team or worked stocking shelves in a supermarket after school.
* A new chicken-fried steak house must have opened in Norman, Okla. The Sooners drew their smallest crowd in 23 years the other day when 54,460 showed to cheer "Boomer Sooner" and check out a 30-13 win over Missouri.
* The senior linebacker from Syracuse who has had 10 knee operations, Dan Conley. Do you think he has thought how difficult it might be walking around when he gets into his 40s?
* Lenny Wilkens is still 13 victories away from breaking Red Auerbach's NBA mark of 938 coaching victories after his Atlanta Hawks lost their first three games. And Kevin Willis' leaving for Miami (via trade Monday night) doesn't help matters.