The U.S. Football League promised the American Football Coaches Association yesterday it will make no more undergraduate signing raids. In return, AFCA representatives said they won't try to bar USFL scouts from campuses. If it's not a settlement, it is a truce.
"We pledge," USFL Commissioner Chet Simmons declared after the summit conference in Grapevine, Tex. (Dallas-Fort Worth airport), "not to have any more signings like Herschel Walker, and of course I can enforce it."
"The line of communication," AFCA Executive Director Charlie McClendon said, "is now open with the USFL. The Walker incident is behind us and is now a dead issue."
Both sides invited the NFL to pursue with them "the development of a reasonable set of guidelines which would be considered to be legal" in handling undergraduates. Meantime, the NCAA, the coaches and USFL, jointly "recognize that a serious question exists regarding the rights of young men to pursue employment opportunities" vis-a-vis "the importance of college football and encouraging college athletes to complete their undergraduate education".
Now, the USFL vis-a-vis the NFL: The new league has picked off a Pro Bowl tight end in his prime, Cincinnati's Dan Ross. He's pledged to spend 1984-86 with the Breakers in his hometown Boston after he plays out his 1983 obligation with the Bengals. The NFL team's general manager, Mike Brown, lauded Ross but not at those prices (rumoredly $400,000 a year). How now, Cris Collinsworth? . . . Pittsburgh defensive tackle Gary Dunn, a free agent as of Feb. 1, has a nice offer from the Birmingham Stallions, who would suit him up for Monday night's opener. Dunn's agent: "We ain't said yes yet. It would take a whale of a lot of dollars to get Gary to leave the Steelers" . . . Gene Goodlow, a 1981 NFL Saints draftee who has played in Canada three years, now has signed with New Orleans--he says on six-year, $1.6 million contract including $545,000 signing bonus. He caught 100 passes for Ray Jauch's Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 1981, the CFL record until Joey Walters received 101 last year for Saskatchewan. Makes one wonder how much the Federals laid out to lure Walters here this week--and whether the Saints had to outbid the Federals for Goodlow . . .
Redskins' 1983 exhibitions will open Aug. 6 at Atlanta, 8 p.m., versus Dan Henning's Falcons and close Aug. 27 at Buffalo, 6 p.m., against the Bills, sandwiching the previously reported Bengals and Dolphins dates Aug. 12 and 19, both 7:30 at RFK--assuming the English bid to put Miami-Washington in London comes to nil.