Curtis Dickey might have been the NFL's fastest human since Bob Hayes.
Might have been?
Well, if we are to believe the Colts. Listen to General Manager Dick Szymanski of the Baltimore club, which made the Texas A&M sprinter-ball carrier the fifth pick in the first round of the 1980 draft:
". . . we feel it obligatory that we reveal that (agent) Jerry Argovitz has flatly rejected a contract offer in excess of $1.2 million (for five years) and informed us that he would not let Curtis Dickey play football this year."
Argovitz, a Houston dentist (Hey, what is this? Yesterday we had Billy Cannon Sr., a dentist, acting as de facto agent for his son), is the man who negotiated Billy Sims the greatest rookie contract ever as No. 1 choice in the whole draft, by Detroit. In Dickey's case, Argovitz has called the Baltimore newspapers several times and told them Szymanski was an "egomanic" and the Colts "archaic."
Maybe on the whole Dickey would rather be in Moscow -- where this NCAA champion might well have run Olympic sprints but for the national boycott and his football aspirations -- but Argovitz insists his demands remain negotiable, Szymanski's statement notwithstanding . . .
The three-point field goal comes to college basketball?
The Southern Conference has received NCAA Rules Committee approval to use the bonus for shots from outside 22 feet on an experimental basis in the 1980-81 regular season, league games only.
Forward David Blue of Georgetown missed all last basketball season as a freshman, after fracturing his left foot. He's done it again -- same bone. Blue underwent a graft from his pelvic bone at Sibley Hospital this week and it's touch-and-go whether he'll be ready for season opening.
Comparison shopping has become all the rage among athletes at contract time, as with Tony Reed and Whitney Paul of the Kansas City Chiefs, who insist they will retire rather than live on salaries inferior to the $1.4 million and $1 million deals bestowed on ex-Canadian leaguers Eric Harris and Tom Clements by the Chiefs. Clements is the former Notre Dame quarterback trying to make it in the NFL from the CFL a la precedessor Joe Theismann . . . Though Dave Elmendorf, quitting the Rams after nine years as a starter, insists the $1.5 million paid by Los Angeles to rookie Johnnie Johnson, his competition at strong safety, didn't spark his retirement.
Holdouts include Larry Csonka of Miami. Zonk took a big salary cut last year to return to Shula-land from the N.Y. Giants, to about $125,000, now demands double that after leading the 1979 Dolphins in rushing with 837 yards. In a 16-game season, yet . . .
And in baseball, the agent for Frank White and Hal McRae won't let the K.C. Royals rest easy, demanding more money, right now, what with the team flying so high and George Brett having been given that grandly upgraded contract . . .
No wonder the guys who take the knocks, or pull on the uniform 162 times a year, never feel rich enough: tennis' Tracy Austin has just become the youngest athlete to win $1 million . . . And when, eventually, you see Pennsylvania's ad campaign answer to "I Love New York" and there's golf's Arnold Palmer doing the plugging, this might cross your mind: The Pennsy Department of Commerce will have paid Latrobe's No. 1 citizen -- Palmer -- $60,000 to "have access to Arnold Palmer for five eight-hour days whenever we choose . . ." Ah, what's $1,500 an hour in this day and age?