Pokey Allen, Former Boise State Coach, Dies Of Cancer

Pokey Allen, former Boise State football coach, died of cancer early today at St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula, Mont. He was 53.

Allen, a Montana native, was in Missoula to spend the holidays with his mother, sister and daughter when he collapsed last Thursday.

He was diagnosed with rhab-domyosarcoma, a rare and aggressive form of muscle cancer, in 1994 only two days after leading the Broncos to the NCAA Division I-AA championship game.

Allen took a medical leave from Boise State last August after learning new tumors were forming on his chest and lungs.

He came back to coach the Broncos' final two games this fall, but resigned Dec. 11 after tests revealed the cancer cells again were active.

Allen was head coach at Portland State from 1986-92 and moved to Boise State in December 1992. He built an 86-41-2 overall record as a collegiate head coach.

His family has decided funeral services will be Wednesday in Missoula, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Winter sports

Frenchman Luc Alphand won a World Cup downhill in Bormio, Italy. The victory was his second in the season's four men's speed races.

Alphand, the defending World Cup downhill champion, edged William Besse of Switzerland by 0.21 seconds and Italy's Kristian Ghedina by 0.67 seconds. Alphand completed the 3,270-meter course, with a vertical drop of 1,010 meters, in 2 minutes, 00.51 seconds yesterday, reaching speeds of up to 78 mph.

-- Deborah Compagnoni of Italy scored her first slalom victory in a World Cup race in Semmering, Austria. With a first-run best time of 52.13 seconds, she had a combined time of 1:42.94, 1.05 seconds ahead of Patricia Chauvet of France.

-- Germany's Dieter Thoma won a World Cup ski-jumping event in Obertsdorf, Germany. Norway's Kristian Brenden was second and Austria's Andreas Goldberger third.

-- Rebecca Sundstrom, capitalizing on Chris Witty's absence, won the U.S. Sprint Speedskating Championship in Milwaukee, sweeping all four races. Casey FitzRandolph won three races for his third consecutive men's U.S. sprint title.

Witty, who last season won both the U.S. and world sprint titles, was ill and sat out all but one of four weekend races.


Roger Clemens' contract with the Toronto Blue Jays remains unsigned as the pitcher's representatives negotiate deferred payments, The Toronto Globe and Mail reported today. Clemens, 34, agreed to terms with Toronto on Dec. 13 after 13 seasons with Boston.


Mikael Tillstrom of Sweden upset two-time champion Yevgeny Kafelnikov 6-2, 6-2 today in the first round of the $328,000 Australian Hardcourt championships in Adelaide.

Tillstrom, ranked 47th in the world, broke Kafelnikov's serve twice in the first set to establish a grip he never relinquished.

The victory took him just 49 minutes.


Chris Hajt's goal with 3:59 remaining gave the United States a 2-1 victory over the Czech Republic, moving the Americans into first place in Group A at the world junior championships in Switzerland.