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Ross Accepts Lions’ Offer Of Five-Year Deal

Sun., Jan. 12, 1997, midnight

Around the NFL

Bobby Ross has agreed to a five-year contract to coach the Detroit Lions, The Associated Press learned Saturday.

An NFL source confirmed late Saturday what NBC had reported earlier in the day, that the former San Diego Chargers coach had agreed to a contract with the Lions.

The AP learned that the contract would be for five years at between $1.5 million and $2 million a year.

The NBC report, which did not cite a source, said Ross would have substantial control over football operations with the Lions.

Ross could not be immediately reached.

The Lions were offering Ross a five-year contract worth $7.5 million, published reports said Friday. They also said he would have the final say on player personnel matters.

The 60-year-old Ross resigned Jan. 3 from San Diego after five seasons, citing extensive differences with Chargers general manager Bobby Beathard.

Williams may sue

Erik Williams may sue the former topless dancer who lied when she accused him of raping her while Dallas Cowboys teammate Michael Irvin held a gun to her head, Williams’ lawyer said Saturday.

“It was clearly a set-up,” lawyer Peter Ginsberg said. “The task that remains is determining who set whom up, the motives for doing that and whether the police were innocently used or more egregiously involved.”

Nina Shahravan, 23, filed a police report Dec. 30 accusing Williams and a third man who was never identified of raping her in Williams’ home the night before as Irvin videotaped parts of the encounter and held a gun to her head.

On Friday, police dropped the investigation after having “determined conclusively that the allegations are not true and that a sexual assault did not take place.”

A new look at instant replay?

For the first time since it went out of business, instant replay has a realistic chance to make a comeback.

A poll of all 30 teams taken by Boston Globe reporter Will McDonough indicates that 22 would vote for instant replay to return in 1997, with eight teams still against it.

In the National Football League, a three-fourths vote (or 23 in favor) is needed for approval. Thus, replay is just one vote short right now.

With the vote that close, the issue will fall into the hands of Commissioner Paul Tagliabue.

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