AAS RECEIVES DONATION FROM THE MOORES

by Marlene Yarborough

Contributing Writer

The University of Houston African American Studies Program has received a $890,000 donation from philanthropists John and Rebecca Moores.

The Moores' donation is part of an effort by the African American Studies Program to match funds it received for a grant in 1992 from the National Endowment for the Humanities. UH was one of only eight universities nationwide to receive this prestigious humanities grant.

Additionally, the Cullen Foundation has donated $250,000 to AAS, and $35,880 has been committed from an AAS volunteer committee.

The AAS will establish two teaching and research chairs in African History and African American literature, said Linda Reed, assistant professor of history and director of AAS.

AAS currently offers 30 to 40 classes each year, and offers a minor.

Reed said, "It is very encouraging the Moores have faith and confidence in the success of UH." She said she feels the grant will help the university become more visible nationally.

"I think we have reached a milestone with this gift, and it gives the university the opportunity to continue its efforts in creating a mass of scholars interested in African American people and African American history and culture," Reed said.

Reed said UH President James H. Pickering was involved in the presentation and proposal of the grant. She said he played an integral part in helping to raise matching funds to secure the grant.

Pickering said, "The endowed chairs and fellowships will help promote a broader understanding on campus and in the Houston community of the contributions African Americans make to American culture."

Of the $211 million total of community gifts and pledges given to UH since Sept. 1989, $70 million has been donated by the Moores.

In addition to the recent AAS donations in the fall of 1991 the Moores gave $51.4 million, the largest gift to a public university. Included in the $51.4 million was $11.5 million donated to the River Blindness Institute which was created in conjunction with the UH College of Optometry and $18 million was given to the UH School of Music to help funding construction of a new building. M.D. Anderson Library was given a $1 million endowment for operating funds. Another $1 million was donated for refurbishment of the Cullen Family Plaza Fountain, $1 million was donated to support research in the UH Texas Center for Superconductivity and a $25 million endowment given to help UH build a state-of-the-art facility that will house both the Athletic Department and the Alumni Organization.

John and Rebecca Moores both completed degrees in economics at UH. After enrolling in the UH Law Center, they completed their law studies in 1975.

In 1980, with only a $1,000 investment, John Moores started BMC Software, Inc. Today it is one of the fastest growing companies among all industries. John Moores is among the state's wealthiest individuals, his total worth being estimated at $240 million.

In the spring 1993 issue of UofH Magazine, John Moores said, "After you've gone out in the business world and made a little bit of money, you're supposed to give something back. Nobody wants to die wealthy. It's a hell of a lot more fun to give it away and see what happens while you're alive."

 

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RICHARDS SWEARS IN UH ALUMNA

by Tiffany Vaughner

Daily Cougar Staff

Texas Gov. Ann Richards said newly appointed U. S. District Court Judge Vanessa Gilmore, "Is a role model, not just for African Americans, but for all Americans," in a speech during Gilmore's investiture ceremony Friday afternoon in the Grand Ballroom of the UH Hilton.

Gilmore, a 1981 graduate of the UH Law Center, was officially sworn in as a lifetime bench member of the Southern District of Texas by Chief Judge Norman W. Black.

Before Gilmore took the oath of office, Governor Richards spoke about the significance of the new judge's appointment.

"Vanessa Gilmore was important when I became governor of the state of Texas, but she became important to me because I insisted, at the time I became governor, that people who ran the government in Texas were going to accurately represent the population of this state," Richards said.

She said she did not feel this way because of any obligation to be politically correct, but because she honestly believes this way of thinking to be true. Richards also said Gilmore's appointment came at a time when the racial demographics of the state are changing.

"By the year 2007, it is estimated that the majority population of Texas will be minority. And it is incumbent upon us, in positions of leadership, to be sure that we have paved the way and prepared the leadership of tomorrow to be able to wield power well, to be able to work together on boards and commissions and have opportunities for service that historically, they have not had in the State of Texas or in the United States," Richards said.

She said when Gilmore's name was mentioned, it was often done within an air of disbelief. Richards said she had faith in Gilmore's abilities from the beginning.

"People often come to me and say, 'Where did you find that black woman?' As if they are such rare creatures. As if someone of such talent and belonging to such a small group that, indeed, it must have taken an awful lot of midnight oil to discover her. It hasn't been that hard. There are a lot of us in this room who have walked into courtrooms and did not feel we were going to get the best shake because there wasn't anybody there in one of those black robes that looked like us. That time will soon change," Richards said.

Richards closed by reading from, what she said, is one of her favorite books, <I>Amazing Grace <P>by Mary Hoffman. The book tells the story of a little African American girl who is told she could not portray Peter Pan in the school play because she is not a boy, and because she is black. The girl practices every day, and eventually gets the part. She is also the best Peter Pan the school has ever had.

Richards said the story of Grace is much like Gilmore's life. She said it was because of Gilmore's drive and unwillingness to accept the prejudices of the people around her that she has reached an apex as a magistrate.

During the reception after the ceremony, Gilmore said the day of her investiture had been one of the best days of her life.

When asked what her appointment will mean to the future generations of Texans, she said she hoped it would show young people that there no areas in life that are closed to them.

"My kids, they're all mine in a way–I'm glad to show them it could happen. It's something that is an option for all of us," Gilmore said.

 

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HOW TO CHEAT WITHOUT FLIPPING A COIN OR BREAKING THE LAW; IT'S AS EASY AS A,B,C

by Nicholas B. Koushotas

Contributing Writer

Procrastination, work burdens, personal problems or mood changes often eat away at study time, freeing the student somehow only the night before a test.

Scoring a decent grade seems to be an old April Fool's trick when the pages of a chemistry or political science textbook are still crisp and neat, and the notes are a disorganized.

Fatigue and confusion might scuttle the test day, scoring another luckless trophy. Academic dishonesty–in the form of cheating is grounds for expulsion–cross a student's mind as a last resort for handling the multiple choice test.

However, the hope to "ace" a test with little effort is not entirely futile if the test-taking method is predicated on gambling the test material.

Lawrence H. Curry, Jr., associate dean of the College of Humanities, Fine Arts and Communication said, "I think that (gambling test material) is perfectly satisfactory. It seems to me that the instructor has to take this into account when he prepares the examination. And if he thinks probably that, he must find some way to penalize the student who does random guessing.

"It's possible, for example, for our test scoring office here to have a student take a multiple choice examination (and be) penalized for wrong answers. So that will discourage the student (from gambling with) test material. But if an instructor is going to count only the right answers without penalizing the student for wrong answers, that's a good way of guessing."

The test-taking method is not a flip-the-coin process–it involves judgment when a student chooses his or her sample.

Choosing the sample is a careful process. First, focus on the lecture notes, hoping the majority of the test questions will come from there. The review material from class session weighs heavily on the sample because some of these materials offer clues. Second, skim the assigned chapters to learn the essentials of the test. Look into the conclusions, main ideas or statements that capture the core of an argument, an idea or the concept of a theory in each chapter.

If definitions of certain terms, principles or laws crop up on the pages, don't try to memorize them; instead, try to get familiarized with the significance of each one.

Once you take the test, you apply your sample, following the following process: Look and answer the questions you definitely know by merely looking at A,B, C, D, E, true or false answers. In this step, you never read the whole sentence of each answer because the aim is to score as many right answers as possible in a short time.

As soon as you finish looking at the questions, then you count how many answers are As, Bs, Cs, Ds, Es, True or False. Then you pick up the letter that has the least frequency in this distribution and bet on it; however, you don't commit suicide. This letter, say B, becomes your yardstick to judge if B is always the answer in the blank questions. If B is obviously wrong, say in the 10th question, then bet on another letter. If you have no idea and cannot figure it out, as this is the case of a math problem, then bet on B.

"There are all kinds of tricks to take a test," said Political Science Professor Ned C. Moss. He suggests a student answer first the longest questions, but not "overthink the question."

"The more you think of a multiple choice question, the more likely you will be confused with the answer," Moss said. Look, he said, for key words in the questions or again for answers that require application of common sense.

"If there is an all-of-the-above answer, chances are very good that will be the correct answer," he said. Again, all depends on how lucky you are, he said.

Robert Matcha, a chemistry professor, said "You should go over a multiple choice test. First, pick out the ones you know the answer. Then, you go eliminating one or two or three or four questions you can. Some questions you have to guess out of two, three, four. You try to eliminate the wrong answers. Then you make a guess out of the remaining ones."

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SIGNS OF URBAN RENEWAL

by Angela Pompey

Contributing Writer

The 22 white, wood-frame shotgun houses situated on the 2500 block of Holman could be construed by passersby as a sign of "urban blight."

However, Project Rowhouses, an attempt at revitalizing the financially depressed, deteriorating part of the Third Ward community, is proof the houses are, instead of "urban blight," symbols of urban renewal and rebirth.

Project Rowhouses is the refurbishment of 22 dilapidated "shotgun" rowhouses, and an important link to the revitalization of the predominantly African American community of Third Ward. Houston artist Rick Lowe, Debbie Groesfeldt and University of Houston Assistant Professor of Architecture Sheryl Tucker share the vision for the properties.

"To African Americans, rowhouses are a sign of freedom, because freed Haitians introduced this type (of housing) into the U. S. in the 19th Century," Tucker said. "Many of the first rowhouses were built in clusters which came to be known as Freedmen's Town."

At first, the houses seem rather unsightly, standing plain and white. However, come closer, and notice that on a number of the houses–where the window is supposed to be–there are provocative paintings. The paintings, rendered by various artists, speak of despair and hopelessness that so often characterize the problems and moods of those that dwell in rowhouses.

The first work features a boy looking solemnly out of a broken window. Done in grays and blacks, it shows the boy dressed in a worn light blue sweater–to the left of him is a tattered beige curtain.

Both the sweater and the curtain are made of actual cloth. Written below the painting are the words, "Our dreams can never be confined by the slave quarter rowhouses, built to define our essence and worth…even in captivity we are dignified and free."

Another particularly striking work is filled with yellow, red and green maze-like lines. It pictures the devil standing, extending his arms toward a bottle of alcohol. A few get quite abstract, even bizarre–making them all the more captivating. Like the one deep in greens, there are a number of themes.

There is the man playing his guitar, wearing a hat with a bird perched atop, while on the back of his head there is another face, a sad one. Beside this man is another man working on a railroad and ignoring a dog barking at him. Nearby, above the surface of an ocean, sits a woman riding a seadragon triumphantly. "That's my favorite one," said Lee Kern, a neighbor who volunteers his time as a house painter for the project. Kern explains that the biggest hurdle for Project Rowhouses is funding.

"We had a grant from Texas Southern University and Mayor Bob Lanier, but it hasn't come through," Kern said.

The rowhouses exist under various ownerships. The Museum of Fine Arts owns a house and the Contemporary Arts Museum owns another. An oil corporation owns a row, and some of the individual artists own the ones their works represent.

When Project Rowhouses is finished, it will serve a unique two-fold purpose–helping out the community's needy and showcasing the visual arts work of Houston artists.

The works of African American artists will be showcased in 10 of the houses upon completion of the project. One of the houses, called "The Spoken Word," will serve as the site for a writer's workshop where poets can read their latest works. Of the renovated houses, seven will eventually be occupied by low income residents.

Rowhouses are not indigenous to the United States. Tucker's students showed her photos of such homes found in Mexico and Bangladesh. The houses exist in all sectors of the Houston metropolitan area, in such places as the Fourth and Fifth wards.

 

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ICEHOUSES A MUST SEE PART OF TEXAS CULTURE

by Bobby Summers

Contributing Writer

An Alan Jackson song is playing loudly on an old radio above the bar at the S Curve Drive-In, a Texas icehouse located in one of the few shady groves of trees on the Lissie Prairie west of Houston.

No one seems to be paying much attention to the music. A group of older men at a corner table are engrossed in a game of dominos that probably had been on-going for years. A few customers are watching the Astros on a television set that is balanced precariously on top of a 1950s refrigerator which Junior, the proprietor of the S Curve, refuses to part with. He says it reminds him of one of his ex-wives, and besides he says, "It still works!" An old top-loading washing machine from the same era sits at one end of the bar and is filled with ice and longneck beer.

A bright yellow and red Houston Rockets "Clutch City" sign is stapled to the wall near the door by the men's restroom. It has only been a few weeks since the Rockets won the championship, but the sign already has some cobwebs hanging from one corner and is starting to take on the look and ambience of the other memorabilia and neon beer signs that decorate the walls.

The S Curve Drive-In is a typical Texas icehouse. Icehouses are a unique part of Texas culture. There are fewer now than there used to be, especially in the big cities.

The term "icehouse" brings to mind distinctly different images for people not born and raised on the Texas Gulf Coast. Between San Antonio and the Golden Triangle Area of Beaumont-Port Arthur-Port Neches, the term "icehouse" has a meaning of its own.

Like the pubs of England, Ireland and Scotland, or the biergartens of central Europe, or the taverns of the Pacific Northwest or the corner bars of the Northeast and Midwest, icehouses are a central meeting point for the local community; a place for camaraderie, relaxation and above all, a watering hole where you can buy a snack to eat and enjoy an ice cold beer with friends.

The tradition of Texas icehouses dates back to the mid-1800s, around the time when William Marsh Rice, who later founded Rice University, began bringing ice from Maine to cool wealthy Houstonian's drinks.

By 1880, ice was being manufactured locally and was delivered by horse-drawn wagons, or could be purchased in 10, 20, 30, 50 or up to 300 pound blocks at the neighborhood icehouse. With the end of Prohibition in 1933, icehouses began selling iced-down beer, a product that definitely hit the spot on a hot summer day.

Although no two of them are alike, they all have certain characteristics that set them apart from other bars.

Air conditioning is provided by the breeze that blows through open garage doors located on the sides of the building. The doors are raised during summer to cool the place off, and closed during winter to hold the heat in. The beer is always iced-down.

The food available is an eclectic selection. It's not unusual to be offered peanuts, Slim Jims, pickled pigs feet, pickled eggs, homemade pork cracklins, hot sausage or dried shrimp.

The customers, most of them regulars, are a mixture of farmers, cowboys, blue collar workers, business people, yuppies, students and people of all racial and ethnic backgrounds. They are attired in everything from three-piece suits to tank tops, shorts and sandals.

Differences are put aside in icehouses as people meet to have a cold beer with old and new friends. At the S Curve, as with most local icehouses, you're not a stranger for very long. Junior makes a point of getting to know all new customers, and then introduces them to some of the regulars. It isn't long before the new customer is one of the regulars. The family atmosphere that exists in icehouses is one reason they are relatively free of fights.

The Houston metropolitan area has a wide assortment of unique icehouses. Many are named after the owners such as: Gator's, Rocky's, Vic & Bro's or Evelyn's in Houston; Sherwood's, Buck's or Felix's in Pasadena; Scooter's in Pearland; Zack's Place in Angleton; or Nolan's Place in Richmond.

Others have more creative names like the Golden Eagle, the Y-Not Inn, the Sports Resort or Bunkey's Corner. Each icehouse is a reflection of the people living in the nearby neighborhood.

At Jimmie's Place in the Heights, the activity is nonstop everyday from its opening at 7 a.m. until its closing at midnight. Most of the customers are regulars. Some have been coming there for years. Some regular customers have met their future spouses there. A few have even chosen to be married right in front of the bar.

Jimmy Murray opened his place in 1950 and passed the business over to his son, Frank, a few years ago. Jimmy claims that he has never closed, even when Hurricane Carla devastated the Gulf Coast in 1961.

"I lost power for more than a week, but I never closed," he says. "I hung up kerosene lanterns and kept the place lit."

The West Alabama Ice House, a few blocks from the corner of Alabama and Shepherd in the Montrose area, is a favorite of many Houstonians including Houston Chronicle writer Jeff Millar, who often writes about the place in his column. It is not unusual to find BMWs parked next to Harley Davidson motorcycles or old Volkswagons in the extremely limited parking space available in front and around the side of the place.

Nolan's Place, on FM 359 in Richmond, just west of Houston, is right down the road from the fashionable Pecan Grove Country Club and across the street from the world famous Swinging Door Barbeque. The faded sign outside claims that Nolan's is "Bum's Favorite Watering Hole," a reference to former Houston Oilers coach Bum Phillips, for whom Nolan worked with for years.

The sign goes on to announce that Nolan's features "Fameily (sic) Games: Dominoes, Horseshoes, Volleyball, Darts, Washers and Pool." Nolan's has picnic tables outside the building on the grass next to the horseshoe pits.

Outside the 610 Loop on South Main is Vernell's Icehouse, which has been a fixture for many years, it now looks strangely out of place as new office buildings and businesses have been built all around it. Owner Vernell Flowers still loves the icehouse business and her customers. She used to own nightclubs and was always facing some sort of violence.

"An icehouse is different," she says. "These guys don't want to fight. They just want to play dominoes."

The new breed of icehouses includes places like Scooter's in Pearland. Owners Bob "Scooter" Ashlock and Gary Valdetero built a 4800-square-foot building with a big paved parking lot and a hitching post and watering trough for horses. They have a full service kitchen, specializing in quarter-pound hamburgers, and features live music and dancing on the weekends.

At the Victory in Pasadena, located about a beer cans throw from the San Jacinto Monument park, refinery shift workers mingle with business people, the pool tables are always busy and honky-tonk music still plays on the jukebox.

Texas icehouses are a must see part of Texas culture. With one visit to your local icehouse and a few ice cold beers, you'll be hooked on the charm, warmth and genuine hospitality of icehouses.

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BURRELL THE WORLD'S FASTEST -- FOR NOW

Cougar Sports Service

Former University of Houston track and field standout Leroy Burrell is once again the fastest man alive.

Wednesday, Burrell set the world record in the 100-meter sprint with a time of 9.85 seconds in a Grand Prix meet held at Lausanne, Switzerland.

Burrell broke the previous record by 1/100th of a second. A record held by another famous Cougar, Carl Lewis.

Lewis and Burrell have been trading the record ever since Lewis broke Calvin Smith's five-year-old record in 1988 with a time of 9.92 seconds.

Burrell bettered Lewis' time by 2/100ths of a second in 1991 but Lewis shattered that two months later with a time of 9.86.

On April 9, Burrell tied the former world record at Austin in the Texas Relays. Ever since then, many felt this was just a matter of time.

Lewis and Burrell should meet in the Goodwill Games in St. Petersburgh, Russia, which starts July 23.

Through July 6, Burrell is ranked No. 1 in the overall standings of the 1994 Mobil Outdoor Grand Prix.

 

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UH LAGS AT USOF

Basketball gold for Luckey makes up for other Festival shortcomings

by Olivia Clark

Daily Cougar Staff

The 1994 U.S. Olympic Festival came to a conclusion Sunday, ending 10 days of competition in St. Louis, Mo.

Five athletes from UH took part in the USOF, which is said to be the most successful Festival to date.

Pat Luckey, UH's basketball specialist, was on the gold-medal South team. Though Luckey was a disappointing 4-13 from the floor in last Tuesday's final game, scoring eight points, the South won the gold by beating the West 94-92.

Luckey was overshadowed individually for most of the tournament by her Southwest Conference rival and fellow Houston native, Texas forward and West player Erica Routt. Routt fared no better than Luckey Tuesday, however, shooting 4-of-12 for 16 points.

Donnelle DuBois, a senior on the diving team, narrowly missed making the finals on the 3-meter board. She finished 13th with only the top 12 going through to the finals.

DuBois, who competed for the West, made it to the quarterfinal round on the 1-meter board last Saturday, but failed to make the semifinals.

In the water polo competition Suzanne Wingenter, a sophomore on the swim team, came up short in the bronze-medal game. Competing for the South, her team placed last, losing to the North 9-8.

On the track, Dawn Burrell failed to finish in the top eight in the preliminaries, which would have placed her in the finals of the 400-meter dash.

Lilly Denoon competed for the South team in the volleyball tournament. The South lost in the bronze-medal game to finish last.

Denoon, who missed the USOF last year due to injury, will be a senior in the fall. A 6-0 middle hitter, Denoon won first team All-SWC Honors last season.

The closing ceremony was held yesterday, bringing to an end the 37 events which were held over the 10 days.

There were many highlights during the festival, especially for the numerous athletes from Houston that took part.

Houston athletes that won gold included swimmers Glenn Counts and Matt Pierce, along with diver Patty Armstrong, who won the women's 10-meter platform.

Houstonian Tracy Bonner, a diver for Tennessee, placed second in the 3-meter springboard competition. Bonner as an age-grouper trained under UH diving coach Jane Figueiredo.

Many of the athletes seen at the festival will now go back to their training routines in an effort to make the 1996 Olympic Games which are to be held in Atlanta.

 

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WINNING WAYS MULTIPLY

NBA Champs give others hope

by Adam King

Special to the Daily Cougar

Thanks to a glitch in Houston's annual sports collapse, compliments of the Rockets, the Bayou City is no longer the Hidden City for professional championships.

The suffering is over. Satisfaction rings true. Or does it?

Now that fans have finally tasted the thrill of winning it all, convincing them to be patient with the Astros and Oilers, who have never made it to their respective big games, might be like asking Magic Johnson to be content owning only one NBA championship ring.

"The expectations for other teams in the future (could put) more pressure on them to be successful," said College of the Mainland Sociology professor Marty Caylor. "It could very well turn into a negative effect. We push people to be winners, which not only creates stress, but keeps us from learning from loss and failure.

"When you get on a bandwagon type of thing, we don't accept the ones in second place. They don't get the respect."

The Oilers can attest to that. They are a case study in futility. Since 1987, they have made an NFL-record seven straight trips to the playoffs and have been bumped a record seven consecutive times in the first or second round.

In January 1993, the word 'Oilers' could not be uttered without the word 'choke' in the same breath after they handed over a 32-point lead and a come-from-behind victory to the Buffalo Bills in the first round of the playoffs.

Following a 1-4 start last season, Houston rang up 11 straight victories despite injuries to key players and the suicide of defensive tackle Jeff Alm and finished with a coveted first-round bye. Kansas City and Joe Montana shredded the Oilers' Super Bowl dreams two weeks later in front of a stunned Astrodome crowd.

With the impending move from the run-and-shoot offense to a more multiple scheme and the presence of many new faces--the result of free agent losses--the Oilers are at a transitional stage. The Oilers know the fans are aware of the changes but they aren't concerned about additional pressure to win.

"We're putting enormous pressure on ourselves," said Oilers general manager Floyd Reese. "When it gets down to the first or second round of the playoffs and we're up against a tough team, whether the Rockets win a championship or not is not going to make us want to win more."

However, Reese said he realizes that fans' measurement of a team's success becomes extremely limited once a city reaches the top.

"There might be an instance where they (the fans) would get disgruntled more quickly than in the past," he said. "From the fans' perspective, once they've won one championship they want to win three, four or five. The people in Houston have had a taste of it and realize how truly sweet it is."

But Reese said Houston fans need to remember just how young their professional teams are.

"If you took the Chicago Bears, they're older than all three franchises in Houston put together," said Reese, who has yet to own a championship ring. "It (the push to win a championship) gets a little skewed from that standpoint."

Reese's math was slightly off--the Bears have existed for 75 years, while the Astros (32), Oilers (34) and Rockets (22) combined have been in Houston 88 years--but his point adds up.

Before Super Bowl I was played in 1966, the Bears had won eight NFL Championships since their inception in 1920. Once the AFL-NFL merger was completed, the Bears have been to only one Super Bowl in that 28-year span, a 46-10 victory over New England in 1986.

The Oilers won the AFL Championship in 1960 and '61, the first two years of the franchise, and have knocked on the Super Bowl door twice in 1978 and '79 by reaching the AFC Championship game, only to lose to eventual champion Pittsburgh both times. They haven't come close since.

Compared to the Bears, Reese and the Oilers are right on schedule, and he believes they have a better shot at the title this year because "with all the free agency moves, this is the most level the playing field has been since the league began."

But whether the Oilers do well or fall face-first, the fans will continue coming to the Astrodome, Reese said.

"One of the great things about Texas and Houston is you don't have to enamor people about football," he said. "The other (Houston) teams can win championships, but people will still come to football."

Astros general manager Bob Watson hopes not. He's counting on the Rockets' accomplishments to increase support for baseball.

To some extent it has worked. The recent three-game series with the Cincinnati Reds pushed 1994 attendance above the 1993 level for 38 home games, but that could also be the result of Houston's tight battle with the Reds for first place in the Central Division and Jeff Bagwell's hot hitting.

One not-so-subtle hint across the 610 Loop from the Astrodome--a sign in front of Pappasito's restaurant that reads: "Hey Astros, how about two championships"--seems to indicate otherwise, that fans are anxious for Houston's "other" teams to win it all.

I don't think it's any more pressure than it's always been," Watson said. "Our goal when we step out there every day is to win. The fans got caught up in the Rockets and I hope it generates some interest (for the Astros). We've been right around first place since opening day but that enthusiasm hasn't caught on yet.

"I'm happy for the Rockets and it paves the way for us to do it. I'm sorry it wasn't us first."

The opportunities were there in 1980 and 1986 when the Astros won National League West titles.

In 1986, the Mets led 3-2 in the best-of-seven playoff and the Astros were one strike away in the ninth inning from clinching Game 6.

Cy Young winner Mike Scott, the winning pitcher in both Astro victories, was on-deck to pitch Game 7. Instead, go-to closer Dave Smith blew a 3-0 lead, allowing the Mets to tie. They went on to clinch a World Series berth with a 7-6, 16-inning victory.

The Rockets, like the Astros and Oilers, endured their years of frustration. But all that is behind them now. Only the championship will be remembered.

Asked if that could motivate the Astros and the Oilers, Caylor said: "It will stimulate them to try to do the same. It will bring more motivation and it will affect people as a whole. That all can be good, but it needs to be balanced.

"Struggle and loss are probably two things that teach people more in life. Having champions is an exciting time, but it's the ones that are in second and third who are the stable part of society and the majority of the population. Sometimes the winner can lose the concept of the meaning of life. Winning isn't everything."

For better or for worse, the players and coaches who see professional sports as a business and a career, winning is everything.

"My gut feeling is that when playing high school football and even at the college level, you learn about losing gracefully," Reese said. "You don't do that in pro sports. If you tolerate losing at this level, then you're not going to be in this business long.

"Knowing how to win and understanding how to win is the most important thing. (After) seven years in the playoffs, maybe we'll have some of that."

For better or for worse, Houston fans do, too.

 

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ONLY FOUR TEAMS LEFT AS WORLD CUP TRIMS ITS FIELD IN HALF, COMES TO AN END

by Chad V. GoGan

Daily Cougar Staff

World Cup USA '94 is almost complete. The tournament began months ago with over 100 teams competing for a place in the finals and is now down to the final four.

As to who the favorite is, no one can say for sure. Teams that were supposed to win haven't, and teams that supposedly hadn't a prayer coming in have received miracles.

In an inspiring performance of determination, Bulgaria ended Germany's quest for a repeat with a 2-1 victory Sunday in East Rutherford, N.J. Staying true to its strategy, Germany scored first and then dropped back into a defensive shell.

Bulgaria, full of confidence from its upset over Mexico, refused to quit. It came back to score two goals in a span of about four minutes against the defending champs.

Also on Sunday, Sweden defeated Romania 2(5)-2(4) at Stanford, Calif. Both teams played a "pull back" defensive style that made for a slow-paced match.

Sweden scored first on a penalty kick. With less than two minutes left in regulation time, Romania scored when Gheorge Hagi's penalty kick deflected off a Swedish player.

Italy needed an 88th-minute goal from its savior to get past a persistent Spain team. Italy won the contest Saturday in Foxboro, Mass. 2-1.

Roberto Baggio took a pass from Giuseppe Signori and scored from an almost impossible angle seven yards out. The win came on the rare occasion when Italy had its full contingent of players available.

The Cotton Bowl saw plenty of fireworks Saturday as Brazil took its place in the semi-finals by beating the Netherlands 3-2. The biggest blast came as somewhat of a surprise.

Typical of its play in this tournament, Brazil took a 2-0 lead off scores by Romario and Bebeto. The Netherlands came back quickly to tie the game 2-2.

The deciding score came in the 81st minute from Brazil's Branco. Branco was called up only a few days ago to replace Leonardo, who was suspended for the rest of the World Cup for his flagrant foul in the U.S. game.

Many critics felt that Branco had been too long out of competition. He suffered a severe back injury that kept him from playing for 40 days. He was selected because of his powerful kicking ability, an ability that payed off.

In the semi-finals set for Wednesday, Bulgaria will try to continue its surprising run when they play Italy. Brazil takes its high hopes and high power game against Sweden.

Many fans may be disappointed that Mexico, Colombia and Germany are sitting home and watching, but don't be too sad. This "final four" holds two three-time winners, Italy and Brazil. There is the possibility that they could play each other for the championship, with the winner becoming the first four-time champion.

 

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GILL NEEDED NO FLASH TO WOW HOUSTON CROWD

by Rosario Pena

Daily Cougar Staff

Shining bright under the stars was country music sensation Vince Gill, who performed a two-hour show to a packed Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion last Friday night.

Opening the <I>Still Believe in You<P> Tour with "Oklahoma Borderline," a casually dressed Gill, in blue jeans and a white T-shirt with a black vest, rolled slowly into a series of ballads including "Pocket Full of Gold" and "Take Your Memory with You."

Moving a little upbeat with "Riding the Rodeo," Gill once again downshifted for "Look At Us" and "Never Knew Lonely."

The calm mood of the audience quickly changed into a shrill of excitement as Gill rocked a mean guitar solo that took everyone's breath away. It was during "What do Cowgirls Do?" from his newly released CD <I>When Love Finds You<P>.

A grand applause followed as Gill set into his latest chart climber "Whenever You Come Around."

Gill picked up the pace with a couple of fast tunes including "The Oklahoma Swing," which displayed solos from some of the band members before their introduction.

Backup singer Dawn Sears then stepped up to share the spotlight in a duet with Gill for "The Heart Won't Lie." Before taking it over completely, Gill allowed her to sing her new release "Runaway Train" from her forthcoming album.

Returning to the forefront, Gill slowed the tempo for "I've Been Trying to Get Over You" and the emotional "Nothing Like A Woman." The golf swing of his arms and a smile from ear to ear signaled the very popular "One More Last Chance," which brought an unusual twist as even the men screamed and hollered to the lyrics "She took my car keys but forgot about my old John Deere." After a standing ovation, Gill left the stage.

For his encore, Gill in the spotlight performed "Nobody Answers When I Call Your Name" before whipping into "Don't Let Our Love Start Slipping Away," but it did not end there. With the crowds roaring for more, the talented singer calmly slid into the Eagles' "I Can't Tell You Why" from the CD <I>Common Threads: music from the Eagles<P>, then proceeded with "Liza Jane" and "I Still Believe in You." Gill finally wrapped up with "South Side of Dixie."

An extraordinary performance from an extraordinary performer.

The very talented Gill was remarkably calm through out the concert even amid screams of adoration. Gill need not swing off the chandeliers to get one's attention, he merely allows his guitar playing and beautiful voice do the work.

He was right about one thing, he "may not have fancy lights", but he and his band "can play [their] butts off" -- which they did!

 

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ROLLINS BAND BEARS WEIGHT WELL, THAT'S NO LIE

by Tom Turner

Daily Cougar Staff

Possibly the most intense and principled musician in the industry today, Henry Rollins is back once again with his band's latest release, on Imago Records, <I>Weight<P>.

This is quite simply a release that kicks in your face with driving, original music, that you just can't find every day.

<I>Weight<P> is the seventh album from Rollins Band, and is possibly the group's strongest work to date. The 12-track album captures the intensity of Rollins' character with the original musical technique of the rest of the band.

The Rollins Band released its first album in 1988, with <I>Life Time<P>. The group followed with two releases in 1989: <I>Do It<P> and <I>Hard Volume<P>. <I>Turned On<P>, <I>The End of Silence<P> and the Japan-released <I>Electro Convulsive Therapy<P> round out the Rollins Band discography.

The Rollins Band toured extensively with its last release, <I>The End of Silence<P>. The group racked up 162 tour dates during 1992. During this time, the band performed with others such as The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Urban Dance Squad, The Beastie Boys and Cypress Hill. Along with this, during several of the shows, the band was joined by The Butthole Surfers, Flea, Perry Farrell, Vernon Reid and Iggy Pop.

On <I>Weight<P>, several tracks stand out and seem to scream "listen to me!" A few of these tracks include "Disconnect," "Fool," "Liar" and "Volume 4." The powerful, and sometimes enraged, lyrical content mixed with a musically sound band produced an album that places Rollins Band far above many others in the industry.

"I think if you go about people-pleasing it eventually backfires," Rollins stated. "And if you're going to make your living predicting what people like, you're always scrambling."

Obviously, Henry Rollins is the front man for the group. Rollins used to be in the "stomp-on-your-head-and-you'll-like-it" Black Flag. He has just completed a book that he had been working on for several years about Black Flag. Along with this, Rollins shot a movie with Charlie Sheen entitled <I>The Chase<P>, which was filmed in Houston.

Chris Haskett, on guitar; Sim Cain, on drums; and newest member, Melvin Gibbs, on bass fill out the rest of the band.

If you liked <I>The End of Silence<P> or any other work that Rollins has been involved in, you are sure to enjoy the Rollins Band's latest, <I>Weight<P>. Look for the first single, "Liar," on MTV. <I>Weight<P> is definitely an album worth checking out.

 

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