More than $13,000 in cash, intended to feed the University of Maryland football team during training in Orlando, Fla., for the Tangerine Bown game, was taken by a robber at gunpoint yesterday on the College Park campus, authorities there reported.
The cash, totaling $13,265, had been drawn from a nearby bank, and was being brought in a bag to the athletic department offices for disbursal among the approximately 140 players, coaches, cheerleaders and others making the trip for the Decl 20 game.
Athletic department director Jim Kehoe said that the robbery, which occurred a few yards from the Cole Field House, would not prevent the Terrapins from meeting the University of Florida Gators in the postseason contest.
"We will have to work something else out," he said of the stolen meal money, which was to have been handed out last night and today.
Bob Stumpff, manager of the athletic department business office, said last night the money will be borrowed today from the campus comptroller's office and repaid later.
The 64 players plus about 25 coaches and assistants are scheduled to leave at 8:30 a.m. Sunday. The others are to leave Wednesday.
According to campus police and other authorities, Stumpff and ticket office manager Frank Gray cashed two athletic department checks for the $13,265 at the Suburban Trust Co. branch at Rte. 1 and Knox Road and drove back to the athletic department offices at the field house about 2 p.m.
They left their car and, Stumpff said, "we were about 10 yards from the [field house] door when the fellow came up behind us."
"I'll take that," the robber said, grabbing the bag.
Stumpff said he thought a prank was being played until he felt a jab in his side and noted that a gleaming revolver was being held to his ribs.
He released his grip on the money bag, he said, and the robber took it and ran off. While Stumpff went to call police, Gray pursued, but soon lost sight of the robber and the bag, which contained the cash and represented dozens of steak dinners.