Fair Game
by: , FORBES

Grant High graduate Steve Forbes agrees with critics who say he got hosed in his 12-round loss by unanimous decision to Demetrius Hopkins.

Hopkins' uncle, world middleweight champion Bernard Hopkins, promoted the March 17 card in Las Vegas.

'Horrible,' says Forbes, who took the junior welterweight fight to Demetrius Hopkins despite a major size disadvantage, connecting on 198 punches to 168 for Hopkins, according to Compubox. 'The three judges made a big mistake. They must have gotten paid off. Ten out of 10 sportswriters there had me winning. It's a black eye for boxing.'

Forbes (32-5), now living in Detroit, isn't seeking a rematch with Hopkins (26-0-1).

'I'm looking for a June or July return (to the ring), maybe a big fight,' says Forbes, 30, runner-up on 'The Contender' last year. 'HBO liked the way I fought. I'm in the best shape I've ever been in. I'm looking to keep moving forward toward a title fight.'

• As he waits for resolution of his $5 million lawsuit against ESPN for wrongful firing, Harold Reynolds is planning to do something that will benefit prospective college student-athletes across the country.

Reynolds is organizing an educational forum series called Game Plan that will debut May 5 in Omaha, Neb., and deal with recruiting, educational compliance procedures and physical training and preparation. Reynolds, who will charge a nominal $20 fee per student-athlete, is looking for a title sponsor but will fund the project himself for now.

'My goal is to stage two or three of these a year,' says Reynolds, the Corvallis native who lost his job after 11 years at ESPN last year. 'The vision is to do them in all the major cities, including Portland and Seattle. We're expecting about 7,000 (high school boys and girls) for the first one in Omaha.'

Among those who have shown interest in participating: Michael Jordan, Roger Clemens, Jerome Bettis and Barry Sanders.

'I have a lot of people stepping up and saying, 'I want to be involved,' ' Reynolds says. 'It's going to be huge.'

• What a season for Aaron Brooks, Oregon's senior guard who came up as big for his team as any player in the country this season. For my money, it was the best individual season for the Ducks since Terrell Brandon's sophomore year in 1990-91, when he averaged 26.6 points and was Pac-10 player of the year.

It will be interesting to see what kind of pro player the 6-foot Brooks turns out to be. Hey, Brandon stands 5-11 and was a two-time NBA all-star.

• After losing Dallas Buck, Jonah Nickerson and Kevin Gunderson from last year's national championship team, Oregon State figured to take a hit in the pitching department. The Beavers haven't skipped a beat, thanks in no small part to veteran pitching coach Dan Spencer. There can't be many better anywhere in college baseball.

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