New Jersey Generals owner Donald Trump has asked the other U.S. Football League owners to provide "partial reimbursement" for quarterback Doug Flutie's multimillion-dollar contract, a spokesman for Trump said yesterday in New York.
John Barron, a vice president of the Trump Organization, said the New Jersey owner wanted the other owners to honor an oral agreement reached earlier this year before Trump signed Flutie to a five-year contract worth between $5 and $8 million.
"When a guy goes out and spends more money than a player is worth, he expects to get partial reimbursement from the other owners," Barron said, leaving the amount "flexible."
Had the owners not agreed to kick in, Trump "probably would have done it (signed Flutie) anyway," Barron said. Still, he said, Trump expected reimbursement because he went after the Heisman Trophy winner at the urging of several other owners -- "Everybody asked Trump to go out and sign Flutie . . . for the good of the league."
Trump wrote USFL Commissioner Harry Usher last week requesting the matter be brought up at an owners' meeting soon. The letter, according to Barron, said in essence, "Are these owners going to live up to the agreement?' "
Barron claimed that Flutie's signing has done a "great amount" for the league and that he hoped a similar arrangement can be worked out in the case of Bernie Kosar. University of Miami passer Kosar, a certain first-round choice in the April 30 NFL draft if he doesn't sign with the USFL first, is being courted by the USFL's Orlando Renegades . . .
Meanwhile, Flutie, calling himself a "marked man," charged that the Arizona Outlaws were out to get him in their 31-13 victory over the Generals Saturday night in Tempe.
The former Boston College hero believes he has become a target for defensive players out to make a name for themselves. He singled out a play in which he was forced to backpedal 25 yards and then duck under a forearm aimed at his head -- all after the whistle had blown the play dead.
The Outlaws denied any intent to teach Flutie any lesson or to make a name for themselves at his expense.