April 17, 1991 |
The New England Patriots apparently have decided to call Raghib "Rocket" Ismail's bluff about playing in Canada. Patriots president Sam Jankovich informed Ismail's agent, Ed Abram, in no uncertain terms yesterday that his club has no plans to match - or even come close - to the two-year, $6 million offer he has received from the Toronto Argonauts, of the Canadian Football League, according to sources close to the negotiations. Jankovich also told Abram that, barring a trade, the Patriots planned to take the Notre Dame wide receiver with the first pick in Sunday's NFL draft even if they haven't signed him by then.
April 26, 1991 |
Toronto Argonauts owner Bruce McNall says he would allow Raghib "Rocket" Ismail to play for his team and the Los Angeles Raiders of the National Football League, but that does not mean the wide receiver/kick returner will be streaking toward the NFL anytime soon. After handing Ismail an $18.2 million, four-year contract, McNall seemed to open the door for a potential quick exit by the former Notre Dame star by suggesting that if Ismail wanted out of the four-year deal, McNall wouldn't stand in his way. In addition, if the Raiders - who drafted Ismail in the fourth round - didn't mind sharing the player, McNall said, he would not object to Ismail's joining Los Angeles after the Canadian Football League season ended in November.
July 11, 1991 |
The larger-than-life hype and expectations have made Raghib "Rocket" Ismail a colossus in a Lilliputian league, and his total compensation - $18 million of which is guaranteed over four years - is so out of whack with the rest of the CFL that the ex-Notre Dame wideout/kick returner will earn more per year than the rest of his team combined. And without having played a down - indeed, having hardly practiced with his Toronto Argonauts teammates - Ismail has become the Canadian Football League's biggest drawing card, the linchpin of its TV advertising campaign, and, some claim, its lone salvation.
April 6, 1998 |
At times, their relationship is as smooth as sandpaper. Their clashes, it seems, are inevitable. While Nicol Corsey's Deptford teammates get a respite from their demanding track coach, she receives no such breaks. She and the man who has her stewing during practices occupy the same dinner table. "I think it's harder when your dad's the coach," said Corsey, a senior who is one of the premier 400-meter runners in the state. "Sometimes we have problems getting along. " Such tension is often the reality for people, such as Bill Corsey, whose own children are among those who address them as "Coach.
November 17, 1988 |
Run, Rocket, run. Run for a mind-boggling 7,376 all-purpose yards and 74 touchdowns in 26 games at Meyers High in Wilkes-Barre. Run to the Pennsylvania state 100-meter championship. And keep on running until you get your time down to 10.57 seconds in the TAC meet in Tallahassee, Fla. Then run right off to Notre Dame and keep on running until you break two kickoff returns for touchdowns in one game, tying an NCAA record that is not shared by Tim Brown, a guy the folks in South Bend compare you to. Run right to the top of the NCAA kickoff-return list with an amazing 37.7-yard average.
October 22, 1990 |
Notre Dame's Raghib "Rocket" Ismail, who dances through defenders on a football field, has a pretty fair singing voice as well. So after each Notre Dame victory, Ismail, the game's most exhilarating player, stands on a bench and leads his teammates in singing the school song. But after the most sterling performance of his career Saturday, when he exploded for a career-high 268 all-purpose yards in Notre Dame's emotional 29-20 win over Miami in South Bend, Ind., Ismail cleared his throat and sang the praises of a guy named Jim Russ.
October 21, 1991 |
Consider the adage "It is better to give than to receive," then consider this: Valley Forge Military Academy and Wyoming Seminary combined for 4 turnovers in the first quarter of Saturday's game in Radnor. But the teams didn't perfect the art of giving until the second quarter, when the ball was turned over four times in the first five plays. Winter gloves in a large family don't change hands that often. Even so, Valley Forge's second half was as perfect as its first half was flawed, and the Trojans scored touchdowns on their first three possessions on the way to a 21-10 nonleague victory over the team from Kingston, Pa. "That was absolutely the craziest first half I've ever been associated with," said Valley Forge coach Jim Burner.
November 17, 1989 |
Even the staunchest Penn State fan is apt to concede that the Nittany Lions don't have many consistently high-yield options on offense. By necessity, senior tailback Blair Thomas again will be Joe Paterno's weapon of choice when Penn State has the ball in tomorrow's game against No. 1 Notre Dame in Beaver Stadium (Channel 10, 2:30 p.m.). The Fighting Irish have a number of instruments of destruction when they go on the attack, but only one brings the coach of the 17th-ranked Nittany Lions to speak in almost reverential tones.
April 22, 1991 |
Jimmy Johnson reached out and touched the NFL yesterday. The Dallas Cowboys' Mad Trader feverishly worked the phones in his team's draft room, looking for yet another sucker to fleece. No stone - or front office - was left unturned. "We talked to everybody in the league about doing something," Johnson said. You would think that NFL general managers would have learned to say no to him by now. Trading with him is like buying a used car from a guy named Fast Freddie.
February 10, 1991 |
This weekend in Indianapolis, more than 400 college football players with NFL aspirations are going through the annual run-, jump-, and lift-athon known as the scouting combine workouts. Hundreds of pro football coaches and scouts, armed with stopwatches and tape measures, will calibrate how fast and how strong, while orthopedists, internists and even dentists will poke and prod. A less exact, but no less significant test for these NFL wannabes is how they react to the pressure-cooker environment of the combine.