- The Washington Times - Saturday, September 15, 2001

NEW YORK (AP) Coolers, backpacks and large bags will be prohibited at major league baseball parks when games resume Monday, part of the sport's stepped-up security following this week's terrorist attacks.

After a series of meetings that lasted all day, Major League Baseball announced the measures, which include a ban on parking within 100 feet of any stadium, inspection of items fans bring into ballparks and an increase in uniformed law enforcement at all games.

"I think fans will be very comfortable with these provisions," said Kevin Hallinan, baseball's senior vice president of security. "Security and safety is our highest priority."

As American sports started an unprecedented weekend off, athletes expressed fears about travel.

Tiger Woods canceled a trip to Paris next week for the Lancome Trophy, saying he was concerned about safety.

"I have always felt that I must be fully committed to each and every golf competition I enter, but due to this week's events, I am not," Woods said on his Web site. "I also fear that the security risks of traveling overseas at the present time are too great."

In Washington, Michael Jordan shelved plans for a big news conference to announce his decision on an NBA comeback, feeling such a spectacle would be inappropriate while America still is in mourning.

But renewed pride in the Stars and Stripes also was evident, with workers in Buffalo, N.Y., and Jackson, Ala., stitching flags onto every cap major leaguers will wear when play resumes.

Baseball players said resuming the season would lift the spirits of the disheartened nation, much as it did when President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the games to go on during World War II.

"You're not going to bring the greatest country in the world to its knees by sneaking up and hitting it in the head from behind," Seattle Mariners pitcher Norm Charlton said. "I would think if you had a chance to ask one of the people who got killed what they wanted us to do, they wouldn't want us to close up shop."

The NFL, Major League Baseball, major college football, professional golf and tennis, auto racing, ice hockey, horse racing just about every one of the events that fill stadiums and TV screens were postponed or canceled through tomorrow.

This will be the first time the NFL has missed a week for a reason other than a labor dispute. The league said it would not have an announcement on rescheduling before Tuesday.

The quiet weekend will give the nation time to dwell on Tuesday's attacks in New York and Washington.

"I don't think those sights will ever leave me," Cleveland third baseman Travis Fryman said. "They'll be forever etched, and maybe they should be. I think it's going to be impossible to ever forget them."

As a result of this week's events, the University of Michigan wants the government to keep airplanes from flying over its football stadium on game days. Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor is the nation's largest, with a capacity of 107,501.

"There's legislation in Washington that is about to be acted on to do exactly that," athletic director Bill Martin said, "to give local administrators of the FAA the opportunity to do that."

Athletes, who routinely fly to away games, did little to hide their fears.

"We fly all the time, so now we're terrified," Denver Broncos wide receiver Rod Smith said. "We don't know all the people who are responsible for helping us get from one destination to another. We get on a plane and we take it for granted that our freedom and our safety are secure. Now there's a fear."

In East Rutherford, N.J., about 10 miles from where the World Trade Center stood, the New York Giants evacuated their indoor training facility at Giants Stadium twice yesterday after alarms went off. Coach Jim Fassel said the alarms were caused by a short in an air duct.

"It was a little scary because of the situation, but I didn't think it was too much," safety Sam Garnes said. "I'm sure we would have heard more sirens than that if something was really going on."

Following the cancellation of today's meeting between Columbia and Fordham, just three Division I college football remained on the weekend schedule, all Division I-AA: Morehead State at Jacksonville, Wisconsin-Eau Claire at Valparaiso and Southwest Missouri State at Southeast Missouri.


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