The Mid-American Conference publicly reprimanded Norther Illinois Coach Pat Culpepper and his assistant, Harry Van Arsdale, yesterday for violating league rules by scouting a Western Michigan game live. Maybe they're have gotten away with it, but Van Arsdale turned up with "the WMU 'Gold Pride' locker-room sign" in his possession and the game was up . . .

A theft has been solved at a Coopertown, N.Y., dairy farm - the Naval Academy's goat was discovered there and returned to Annapolis (we think) after nearly a month's "vacation." Cadet sophomore Garon Reeves faces demerits and walking tours in the wake of his successful kidnapping of Bill XXI, according to Lt. Col. Jere Forbue. Reeves brought Bill to Cooperstown Oct. 8, farmer Tony Schleiser taking him in after his daughter Theresa, 17, sister of Reeves' girlfriend, Lucy, 18 reshman at Ladycliffe College near West Point) agreed to look after the goat in return for promise of a weekend at the Army-Navy game. The goat was let out of the bag (rather, said farmer Schleiser, "a horse stall converted to V.I.P. headquarters") after Reeves responded with braggadocis to Navy reaction, led by football captain Phil McConkey, that with a 6-0 record at the time the Mids were better off without the mascot.