Houston center Charles Outlaw had nine blocked shots and five steals, and the Cougars shot over 87 percent from the foul line as Houston defeated Texas A & M 79-69 for its 20th win Saturday at Hofheinz.

The win kept the Cougars (20-5, 9-3 conference) one game behind Texas, who leads the Southwest Conference with a 10-2 record.

Outlaw's nine blocked shots are the most in a single game by a Cougar since Hakeem Olajuwon's 10 against Arkansas in the 1984 SWC tournament. His 79 swats for the season are the most since Olajuwon notched 207 in 1983-84.

Head Coach Pat Foster said he was impressed by Outlaw's effort.

"(Outlaw) played as hard as he has played all year," Foster said. "He had a great game chasing loose balls and getting blocked shots."

The outcome of the game was in question until halfway through the second half.

By halftime, the Aggies had compiled a 36-31 lead.

The Cougars battled back, forcing A & M into 13 second-half turnovers.

The lead changed hands during the second half; however, with 12:26 remaining, Aggie sophomore Chuck Henderson sunk a three-pointer for A & M's last tie at 47.

At that point, the Houston defense shifted into high gear by using a 2-2-1 zone press.

The Cougars went on a 17-4 tear, and by 4:49, they owned a 13-point lead.

Houston was able to hold on to its lead through above-average free-throw shooting. Their last 13 points came at the charity stripe. The Cougars made 19 out of their last 21 free-throw attempts.

In the last two games, Houston has shot 47 of 57 free-throws for 82.4 percent.

Houston has won 10 of its last 12 games. However, Foster said the team has come out flat in its last two games against Texas Tech and the Aggies.

"You need to win games like this, where you win on talent," Foster said. "You can't always rely on emotion."

However, Foster said the Cougars' opponents have not had trouble getting up for games.

"We are not catching anybody flat; people are just getting ready to play us."

Houston has two contests left, both conference games, against TCU tonight at Hofheinz and at SMU March 7.

The TCU game will likely decide who holds second place in the conference and who gets the second-seed in the SWC tournament.

A win for the Cougars against TCU would also greatly improve their chances for an NCAA tournament bid.








While some students will be on the beach soaking in the sun, others will be soaking in the atmosphere of the work place as they explore career options through the Spring Break Career Previews program.

Career Previews, offered by the UH Career Planning and Placement Center, enables a student to observe the work day of a UH alumnus in the field in which the student tentatively wants to work, said Anita Wollison-Bartlett, career counselor.

The program is designed for sophomores, juniors and first-semester seniors who have chosen a major but are not yet in the job search mode, Wollison-Bartlett said.


She said students often struggle through the process of picking a major and then, two years later, jump headlong into the job-search process, without knowing there is career planning.

"Students struggle through the process of picking a major, and then two years later, jump into the job search process. They don't realize that there is career planning," she said.

Career Previews can be especially useful for liberal arts students who want to explore career paths and increase their options.

The program will also help first-generation college students who lack role models, and any students who are not exactly sure what it is that professionals in their chosen fields do, she said.

Twenty-six students participated in last year's program, but the number of students who may participate is limited only by the availability of alumni.

The deadline to apply is March 6. Applications received after that date will be placed on a space-available basis only. Everyone who applied by the deadline last year got placed.

After Wollison-Bartlett receives a student's application for the program, she interviews the student to understand his or

her career interests so that the student can be matched to an appropriate professional.

The average placement lasts three to four days but won't necessarily be held in one place. Placement in more than one location allows a student to "compare and contrast," she said.

Typically, a student will simply observe the professional's activities; however, a couple of students actually got involved in some work activities last year. For example, one student got to set up a display at Marshall Field's.

Marites Bartolome, a senior techology major, said. "I gained exposure to the field I wanted to go into, and I saw professionals in action. It helped me also make a future career decision.

Applications may be picked up at Campus Activities in the University Center, both the Moody Towers residence halls and the Career Planning and Placement Center, Room 106, Student Services Center.








In the race for an environmentally conscious campus, UH is one step ahead of the competition with its newly-christened Texas Center for Environmental Studies (TCES).

TCES began several years ago as a loose confederation of faculty members interested in promoting environmental causes. The group call-

ed itself the Texas Institute for the Environment (TIE).

When the late UH President Marguerite Ross Barnett joined the university in 1990, she made TIE one of her top priorities.

Her commitment included changing the group's name to TCES.

Associate Vice President for Research, Andrew Szilagyi, a UH faculty member for 20 years, has acted as temporary director for TCES for the last year and a half.

"My job was easy because the faculty were there and all they really needed was somebody at the provost level to recognize it, bless it, and try to pull people together," Szilagyi said.

TCES is an interdisciplinary unit of over 70 faculty members, which reports to the provost. The center's main objectives center around environmental education.

"Our three major functions are education, research and outreach," Szilagyi said.

Proposed TCES programs include interdisciplinary research grants; summer internships and field studies

for university students; certification programs for environmental professionals; database creation; and development of interdisciplinary course work.

Not content with only local

activities, TCES has a national connection as well.

Last July, President George Bush appointed Barnett to the President's Commission on Environmental Quality. Of the commission's 25 members, the only other school represented is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Other members of the commission include Proctor & Gamble, Chevron Corp., World Wildlife Fund and Time Warner Inc.

Szilagyi regularly travels to the commission's meetings as one of UH's representatives and is impressed with the group's diversity.

"It's amazing," he said. "All these people are around the same table, believe it or not, and they're not throwing things at each other."

Currently, TCES's objectives are focused on financing.

"The next issue now, as it is everywhere on campus, is funding," Szilagyi said.

Although the center is a campus-based organization, it is looking for funding in the private sector.

"Given the scarcity of funds around here, I don't think that it would be proper for us to allocate a great deal of money to it," Szilagyi said.

The next order of business centers on finding a new acting director for TCES. Szilagyi said that when more funding becomes available, the group would conduct a national search for a permanent director.

Although Szilagyi said he was pleased with TCES's current status, he has definite ideas about what he would like the future to hold.

"Hopefully, TCES will be recognized for its research in environmental activities, recognized for its outreach activities and hopefully recognized for being a supporter and promoter of environmental curriculum development," he said.








At her memorial service Sunday, Marguerite Ross Barnett was eulogized as a humane and caring leader who was here too briefly, but whose legacy will live on.

"Our losses are severe. What has already been said, what will continue to be said and felt long after this memorial service concludes, are the ways we assess our deprivation.

"But if each tribute to Marguerite measures our loss, it also tells our gain. Such a death -- untimely and unkind -- has a way of handing over to us the life of that person. It is no longer hers to shape and validate. Now it will assume the shapes and bear the values we give it," UH System Chancellor Alexander Schilt said.

The memorial service at the Cullen Performance Hall attracted about 700 people to hear friends and colleagues speak of the impact Barnett's life had on them.

Following the service, Barnett's daughter Amy said she hopes the Texas Center for University School Partnerships continues. She said her mother had always wanted to give high school students the opportunity to continue in their academic pursuits.

Barnett's husband Walter King said he hopes UH continues "to

be committed to her ideals and goals." Barnett's mother, Mary Eubanks, was also in attendance.

President George Bush sent a letter to King stating his sorrow over Barnett's death. It was read during the service by the Rev. Bill Lawson of Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church.

The letter stated, "Marguerite was a dedicated servant to the University of Houston, to her community and to her country. She was very special, and she will be missed."

Houston Mayor Bob Lanier said that Barnett's impact on Houston will live on.

"I think we in the city of Houston, students, family, faculty and trustees are indeed fortunate that we have had a great lady in our midst whose life has shed many sparks," Lanier said.

Acting UH President James Pickering said, "For us, she articulated a dream, a dream that UH can and will become the premier 21st century urban research university.

"It will do so by reaching out and engaging the city, its citizens and problems in a way that makes a significant and lasting difference in the character and quality of the common life we share together."

Barnett died last Wednesday in Hawaii of complications from cancer. She and her husband Walter had honeymooned there 12 years ago.

King said during their 11-day vacation in Hawaii, Barnett was happy.

"We went back to all the islands we had visited before. The day before she died, she was on the putting green," King said.

Barnett's funeral services were held Monday at the Union Baptist Church in Scottsville, Va.








Vice President for Student Affairs Elwyn Lee covered many issues at Friday's Student Fee Advisory Council (SFAC) meeting.

But when he began fielding questions, the topic stayed on one subject: athletics.

Although UH policy maintains a 35 percent cut for athletics out of student fees, many members expressed dissatisfaction with supporting an increasingly prosperous department.

SFAC Chair Dan Lurvey, a senior chemical engineering major, asked Lee if the committee could create a supplementary fee, excluding a cut for athletics for any increase above the current $90 fee. Lee, who serves on the Athletic Advisory Board, said the athletic department wouldn't negotiate that until 1999.

That's when the current funding arrangement ends. In 1988, a student referendum set a 35 percent cap for the financially-strapped athletic department.

Since then, SFAC has given athletics an automatic share of the student fee total, which last year amounted to approximately $5.4 million.

Lee said that cap would not be voluntarily dropped. He stressed that a healthy athletic program would let UH keep up with the University of Texas-Austin and Texas A & M.

"When trying to achieve greatness," he said, "you try to mimic large schools."

SFAC member Everett Chun, a Students' Association appointee, asked Lee about the possibility of UH athletics switching to a Division II ranking.

"The contribution of a few rich people can't keep the program afloat," he said.

Lee said the school would lose money in Division II. He said he envisioned UH having a "Notre Dame-type status," with constant media exposure of its teams.

He said that in a lower division, the athletic department might also risk losing such donations as half of the Moores' $51.4 million gift.

"He (John Moores) doesn't like anything second-class," Lee said.

Although still operating in the red, the athletic department is closer to turning a profit. Winning football teams have brought television revenue and increased attendance.

The late UH President Marguerite Ross Barnett was a major force in attracting donations, including the Moores' gift.

SFAC member and Russian language Associate Professor Harry Walsh said low student interest in sporting events proves UH is an "avant garde" university which is taking the lead in non-support of athletics.

"In a few years," he said, "other institutions will look at athletics like we do. I think in this case, we're not behind these institutions; we're ahead of them."








It was a weekend of bests and worsts as the Houston Cougars snapped a four-game Southwest Conference losing streak Saturday by taking the front end of a doubleheader with TCU 4-1.

UH kept its lock on last place, though, by dropping the other two games of the series by scores of 10-7 and 5-3.

The Coogs are 8-8 overall with a deceptive 2-7 record against SWC foes. If this weekend proved anything, it was that this is a last-place team that sure doesn't look like one.

Again and again, UH seemed to have a victory, only to walk away as series losers for the third weekend in a row.

The nearly 800 fans on hand Saturday at Cougar Field appeared almost as concerned with genealogy as the game.

The Horned Frogs' Reid Ryan, son of Major League strikeout king Nolan Ryan, narrowly out-dueled the Coogs' Wade Williams to take the nightcap.

Ryan didn't overpower the Cougars with the fastball, as his dad has done to opponents for close to three decades. In fact, the younger Ryan registered no strikeouts at all.

Instead, he relied mainly on the split-finger and the circle change, both of which he picked up from hanging around his dad's office. In the end, he pitched just well enough to win.

"Reid got behind some hitters early because he was overthrowing his fastball a little bit," the elder Ryan commented after the game. "But then he settled down, and I thought he pitched real well."

But make no mistake about it: If it hadn't been for one mistake from Cougar starter Wade Williams, the story would have been how Reid Ryan, son of Nolan, lost his Cougar Field debut.

Pitching in a 1-1 tie with two outs and two on in the top of the fourth, Williams unleashed a sinker that didn't sink to TCU's Jon Castor.

The sophomore transfer from Oklahoma State jumped all over his belated Christmas gift and promptly deposited it somewhere near the golden arches on Elgin for his second Cougar killer in two days, saving Ryan's win.

"Same old, same old," Houston Coach Bragg Stockton said after the twinbill. "One pitch cost Wade the ballgame. It's just the little things that keep beating us."

In Friday afternoon's opener, the Coogs thought their luck had finally changed. After blowing a 4-3 lead by giving up four unearned runs in the top of the eighth, UH sent the game into extra innings with a Phil Lewis home run in the bottom of the ninth.

Now it was the Cougars who would deliver the big inning, or so they thought. Houston loaded the bases in the bottom of the 11th with two outs, but couldn't deliver when it counted. Sophomore Ricky Freeman ended the inning by grounding out to short.

Try as they might, the big inning would once again belong to TCU. Jon Castor registered his first SWC hit with a three-run round tripper off of Jeff Haas. A win that seemed firmly in Houston's grasp was snatched right back.

Despite the Coogs' talent and the closeness of the games, the real








Vietnam War POWs and MIAs are alive and need help, claims a new organization which met recently to discuss the issue.

And they're going to show the Republican National Convention in Houston that the issue means business with an Aug. 16 demonstration.

The National Vietnam POW Strike Force has called for a demonstration for Vietnam War-era MIAs which many feel are still alive and being held prisoner by the Vietnamese, who have denied holding any MIAs.

Strike Force Executive Director Joe Jordan said that he feels many Vietnam veterans were deceived during the war.

"Our superiors told us there was a chance we could be shot down."

"What they didn't say is that, if we were captured, we'd be forgotten, and that our own government would try to tell everyone that we didn't exist," he added.

"In 1973, The U.S. government ended the Indochina conflict and, in its haste to depart, left 2,300 of its best fighters," Jordan said.

The strike force's plan for the convention is three-pronged, Jordan said. Besides the demonstration, it intends to ask members of Congress about their positions on legislation dealing with MIAs. The group also plans to get the truth from government officials about soldiers listed as dead.

"Once we get the results of our survey, we'll be circulating our findings to VFWs (Veterans of Foreign Wars) and American Legions," Jordan said. "We've got to flex our muscle and show legislators that Vietnam POW issues are important."

Many soldiers listed as dead may actually be POWs or those whose whereabouts are known by the government, Jordan said.

Legislators will also be asked on the surveys about whether they would attend the demonstration. The Strike Force is also considering holding an extra demonstration at the San Jacinto Monument.

"We'd like to show that, at the place where Texas won its war, other veterans are still fighting theirs," Jordan said.

"Some veterans (of other wars) feel that it wasn't their war and forget about it, but we can't," Jordan said.

"I have a nightmare that involves coming face-to-face with a just-released POW, sitting in a wheelchair and weighing only 90 pounds," Jordan said. "He looks me in the eye and asks if I'm a Vietnam veteran. I say yes, and he asks me why I abandoned him, why I didn't do anything, that surely I must have known something. I just look at him and have no answer."

Three of the four parade permits issued by the city for the week of the convention have been issued to groups sympathetic to the Republican Party. The College Republicans have a permit for Aug. 18, the National Federation of Republican Women hold another for Aug. 19 and the Houston Host Committee has the permit for Aug. 20.

All People's Congress, a group opposed to President Bush's domestic and foreign policies, has the permit for Aug. 17.


Visit The Daily Cougar