I was disgusted by article by Robt. Hall on NCAA (SI, Jan. 3). I am the low man on the totem pole, entirely ignored by Mr. Hall, the man who watches football on TV. I live 35 miles from Purdue, 90 miles from Notre Dame, 165 miles from Northwestern, 150 miles from Illinois U. Can go to Michigan State, Michigan U., Ohio State and get home the same day; also 60 miles from Indiana U. However, I prefer my football by TV. But I don't care to look at TV and see San Diego play Kalamazoo. Which is about what you get on NCAA. Why can't the Big Ten and PCC run their own business? Who wants to see Miami play Cincinnati any time anywhere. Certainly no football fan, because they don't play football. Haven't the players nor the coach and don't know how.
PARDON MY TYPING
Pardon the typing but I'm so mad that if I wrote this it would be even harder to read. This is my first letter to any magazine....
I'll make it short and sweet. All year I've been watching what I consider lousy football on my precious one day a week when I can relax—with a bottle of beer and a buddy and the wife goes next door and sews, and now here it is another good relaxing Saturday, New Year's to boot, and what the hell do they do but put all four Bowl games on!
I know that may sound foolish and I guess I should be grateful but it just makes me more conscious of all the good games those bums have made me miss!
January 24, 1955
I'm one of those screwballs that believe in things, I drink Pabst Blue Ribbon 'cause of the fights, just started making my wife buy Dial soap 'cause I like G. Gobel, etc., and I'm too lazy to write letters about it as you can see what a struggle it is.
But I've never felt so frustrated in my life and so help me if SI or anybody else wants to start a crusade or something to put those bums in their place I'll find the time to help if I have to take time off from work....
I think SI is coming along fine, the latest Norris deal is a darn good fulfillment of what you said you'd stand for when you started; keep it up.
A FRIENDLY NOTE
Just finished Bob Hall's beef about TV money will wreck small schools.
I know Bob Hall and have known him since he was a boy at Roxbury Prep School at Cheshire, Conn. I can understand Bob's point, but on the other hand how about the millions of other people who cannot afford to buy tickets for big-time football games, or the sick and disabled who get much joy at looking at these games on TV.... Here in my town, New York City, we only have Columbia playing big league football, and by what I hear I doubt if it pays for itself. If they were on TV every game they play they would have no losses. Fordham and NYU had to give up, but if they were allowed to have games on TV I think they would still be going....
Hall and the mob at New Haven still come to my restaurant—this is a friendly note.
You are improving this gazette every week—I like it very much. I can't wait for it to come out.
WHAT, NO MINORITY?
APPARENTLY HALL FEELS THAT A MINORITY IN NCAA HAS NO RIGHT TO EXPRESS ITS VIEWS.
INJUSTICE TO THE SOUTH
An examination of the record over the years will prove that the Southeastern Conference is the pillar of strength and repository of football power, but only one (1) SEC game is televised each year! Quite an injustice to organized collegiate football—to say nothing of the small colleges of which Mr. Robert Hall spoke.
LEMONS IN SEASON
Mr. Hall is fighting a losing cause and he knows it. The Ivy League, with the exception of Pennsylvania, thinks it is going to hold on to its silly Game of the Week, but it has already lost. Robert Hall may have the best interests of Yale at heart, but my interests are with the Big Ten and Notre Dame.
I am violently opposed to another football season of lemons, like the Maryland-Missouri game or Army riding roughshod over Columbia, when I can see Notre Dame playing the best teams in the nation on the same Saturday. Notre Dame stadium holds 57,000, I live 1,000 miles from it, but I like to see the team play two or three times a season.
HARRY E. LYON
San Marcos, Tex.
POT OF GOLD
All of us, I am sure, feel sorry for the colleges, large and small, who are hit by financial troubles, forcing the schools to curtail any part of their curricula, including valuable athletic activities. We therefore should be thankful, it seems to me, when a college hits upon even a small pot of gold to help put one of its departments in the black.
Notre Dame has hit upon such a small pot of gold—and it is small compared to the expense of operating an entire university. Additional TV money would come in very, very handy. Why should Notre Dame turn it down because other schools are not so fortunate as to possess such a source of income? Most schools have revenue sources (endowments, taxes, etc.) that Notre Dame has not. Not only its athletic survival, but the survival of the university itself was, in its early days, many times in doubt, but it managed each time to find a way out. Surely Toledo and like colleges will find a way to continue athletics if they lose football gate receipts because their own fans prefer to watch Notre Dame on TV.
Patrick AFB, Fla.
A NATIONAL CONCERN
Mr. Hall declared that if football does not survive, then intramural and minor sports will be abandoned, since the athletic and physical training programs of most colleges are from 60% to 100% financed by football receipts. The reduction of these programs would become a matter of national concern because it would result in an even higher percentage of rejections of young men for the armed services. Several facts should be pointed out:
1) There are a number of colleges who now finance their physical education and intramural programs without any athletic gate receipts whatsoever.
2) When the University of Chicago dropped football, it continued to sponsor competition in some 14 other sports and is still doing so today. This has happened in other colleges.
3) The idea that football is a munificent provider for many other activities should be altered to fit the facts. At one large university where gross football receipts total about $2 million, the soccer team operates on a budget of above $1,000, and the three sports of wrestling, fencing, and gymnastics combined are allotted about $10,000....
4) The facts indicate that the more money football makes, the more is spent for football. It becomes a greedy, hungry monster which, as it grows bigger, has to eat more; and the more it eats, the bigger it gets.
I am citing these points to help keep the record straight. I fully agree with Mr. Hall's contention that the colleges need controlled television. I, too, hope that college football will not be jeopardized. But I do feel that football should stand and continue on its own two feet as a collegiate sport and not receive unjustifiable credit as given by Mr. Hall.
BRUCE L. BENNETT
WHAT IT'S GOT, IT TAKES
Roger Bannister's explanation of the art of record breaking (SI, Jan. 3), "It's the ability to take more out of yourself than you've got," is an excellent figure of speech.
What many people fail to realize, however, is the explanation of the art of record breaking in any line of endeavor: the ability to take out of yourself WHAT you've got.
While I'm at it, may I congratulate SI for taking out of itself so much of what it's got.
SPORTSMAN OF 1952
I was truly pleased to see that the editors of this magazine chose Dr. Roger Bannister as the Sportsman of the Year. Besides accomplishing an almost unbelievable feat, he is also a brilliant young man and in more ways than one, a humanitarian. The choice was indubitably a wise one.
I would be greatly interested in knowing who you feel was the Sportsman of the 1952 season. My guess would be Bob Mathias.
•But Mathias would have had to compete with Dick Button, Maureen-Connolly, Bobby Schantz and Stan Musial.—ED.
OUT OF SIGHT, OUT OF MIND
In the Jan. 3 issue of SI there is an animated gallery of the sports headliners of '54—BUT—no mention is made of crew. What about the world's champion U.S. Naval Academy 8-oared crew, and John B. Kelly Jr., U.S. National Champion, Canadian National Champion and Mexican National Champion single-sculler?
•Navy rowed so fast it was out of sight.—ED.
THE MOTIVATING DRIVE
Just a short note of praise for your fabulous magazine.
I am a student at San Diego State College where I participate in cross-country and track. I have found your complete coverage on track's immortal runners very inspirational. I'm sure other runners around the country have also been inspired by your colorful stories and I believe this is the best way to arouse interest in the sport. If we are to beat the runners from European countries there must be a motivating drive. As we learn in psychology, one of the basic drives is recognition; therefore, through articles as yours, you may be motivating countless runners in the United States, which may show up in future Olympics. As we all know, there is no short road to becoming a great runner, but with SI's help, it may become less painful and more encouraging.
DON R. FOSTER
San Diego, Calif.
LIKE IN POKER
It's basketball season and I see you are doing, or rather have been doing, a great job of covering Gola and Company—having been featured in your magazine twice (SI, Dec. 27, 13).
In the Jan. 10 issue—section on basketball—you stated that Duquesne's two All-Americas were better than La Salle's one All-America. Also in a poker game—a pair beats an ace high. In Kentucky at the Christmas Invitational Basketball Tournament, Gola discovered than an ace high wasn't nearly good enough to beat five of a kind. There are no All-Americas at Kentucky, but as always Coach Rupp has fine boys on the floor playing good ball all the way. Should you ever want to see presentday college basketball at its best, I would suggest you visit with Coach Rupp and his boys.
DR. WM. O. ALLEN
•True, and two weeks later Georgia Tech's wild deuces beat Kentucky's five of a kind.—ED.
RAH, RAH BURROW!
Your good story on La Salle's Gola and Company comes out on the same week as Collier's story on Gola. All this year it has been Gola, Gola, Gola...Rah, Rah, Rah!
No doubt, Mr. Gola is a good basketball player, but when he leaned up against Burrow of Kentucky he looked quite ordinary. Even little Billy Evans outscored and outplayed the mighty Gola in Kentucky's Invitational Tournament.
I am no great basketball fan. I try to see Kentucky play once a year and often miss a year. What gets under my skin is that a rather poorly rated team like La Salle should get all the national magazine publicity. Is it that the East is so proud of a winning team they cannot see past the Green Mountains?
FRED J. BURKHARD
•Kentucky rates No. 1; La Salle No. 4.—ED.
As a physical education major, I would like to extend a note of appreciation for your article on Tom Gola. Your stress of this outstanding athlete seemed to be based on his refreshing personality which is, as so many people fail to realize, such an integral part of the total result. Your article reflects the best and most interesting side of sports—a reflection that is definitely essential nowadays. With all the personality quirks of so many athletes, it is especially gratifying to realize that there are men like Gola who love and live the sport in its real wholesome atmosphere, not separating it or causing it to separate them from their homes, social contacts, or religion....
MARY BETH BURNS
At the risk of striking an only sour note in an amazing unanimity of opinion I must say that there are things I do not like in SI.
The "Princely Boar Hunt" (SI, Dec. 27) was one of the biggest bores I have ever read. It had all the relationship to sports of a morning firing squad in action, and it had as much to do with hunting as a workout at a Coney Island shooting gallery. Spare us further such.
We have a favor to ask. Please print this year's rushing record of Alan Ameche. We've had indelibly imprinted upon our minds what his four-year record was, but it was this year he made Back-of-the-Year, All-America, near Athlete-of-the-Year, etc., and we're under the impression that he didn't do so well against three or four teams, particularly Ohio State and Minnesota. It has been a nice gesture, though—he's a senior now.
North Hollywood, Calif.
•Ameche's four-year record:
In the Minnesota game he had gained 26 yards when he was taken out in the third quarter with a bad leg. Ohio State allowed him only 42 yards.—ED.
The Dec. 27 issue of your magazine, in which was related a German boar hunt, I found particularly interesting. Articles on such unexpected sports are particular to your magazine and make it appeal even to those who are not particularly interested in sports.
HENRY G. MAGENDANTZ
Newton Highlands, Mass.
THE RAIN, NOT THE BUCKEYES
Thanks for Red Sanders' factual report and appraisal of the Rose Bowl game (SI, Jan. 10). After reading Los Angeles papers, wherein I learned: 1) that Ohio State was just plain lucky; 2) that UCLA would beat both Ohio and SC on the same day; 3) that the rain, not the Buckeyes beat SC; 4) that Hopalong Cassady should give his All-America sweater to Jon Arnett; and 5) that the press-box roof leaks, I was beginning to wonder if I had seen (live, not on TV) the same game that they had....
Again, my thanks for an honest article.
BETTER ALL AROUND
Since the Big Ten has won eight Rose Bowl games out of nine, I think it is time to change the Rose Bowl. I think this game should feature the champion of the Pacific Coast Conference, regardless if they played in the previous Rose Bowl, against the best team from other sections, whether the team is a Big Ten, independent like Notre Dame, Ivy League, or any other conference.
This would be a better game all the way around, I think.
F. J. MILLER
Cedar Rapids, la.
JIMMY FOR BILLY
BUD WILKINSON'S SI ANALYSIS OF COTTON BOWL GAME INCLUDES ONE BIG ERROR. IT'S NOT BILLY THOMPSON OF GEORGIA TECH, IT'S JIMMY THOMPSON. THIS SUPERSCAT BACK WAS A STAR OF OUR AAA STATE CHAMPIONSHIP TEAMS IN 1951 AND 1952.
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
•Thanks. Time out for substitution.—ED.
Besides congratulating you on your fine new publication, I would also like to thank you for giving my husband an idea for his annual Christmas card! It's always a hectic last-minute affair, as Christmas is always a busy season with him and he illustrates his own card! We were really worried this year...it was Dec. 16, and no idea! Then I ran across the enclosed photo in Surprising Deer Hunt (SI, Dec. 13). Enclosed is the surprising Christmas card my clever husband came up with!
MRS. ROBERT J. GANLEY
JAI ALAI IN ST. LOUIS
Just a note to complete Octavius Cohen's article on jai alai (SI, Jan. 3).
The only building in the United States that was built for the sole purpose of jai alai exhibitions is a huge brick building on DeBalivere Avenue in St. Louis. It was built for the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis.
After the fair and the accompanying tourists left St. Louis, the building was converted into an ice skating rink. It is still used and is known as the Winter Garden.
University City, Mo.
•Indeed, indeed. We have skated there ourselves.—ED.
SCHOOL HILLS INDEED!
The disparagement of Eastern ski areas in James Epperson's letter to you published in your Jan. 3 issue is so obviously based on misinformation that it hardly needs refutation However, lest some be misled, let this be said:
"Dinky little areas?" What areas in the United States have a greater aggregate length of downhill ski trails than Stowe? Where is there a tougher course to ski than the Fall Line at Mad River? What areas cater to a larger number of skiers than Bromley? Where is there a racecourse more grueling than the Inferno course through Tuckerman's Ravine, with its 4,000-foot drop? "School hills" indeed! Come East, Mr. Epperson, and see if they bore you.
"School hills," yes. But what a schooling they give! It was on them that a good half or more of the best downhill and slalom runners this country has had were developed, from Dick Durrance, our first top-notch competitor, to Ralph Miller, who won the National downhill and combined at Aspen in 1953, Sally Neidlinger who won the women's downhill and combined, Andrea Mead Lawrence, with her three Olympic gold medals, and Brooks Dodge, who was far out in front of the rest of our team in the World's Championships last year. (He was fourth in the combined.)
People in the East don't have to be told that the skiing in the West is good. They know that skiing in the East is good too. Just how comparatively good, p. 63 of the same issue of SI indicates.
New York City Ski Council
NO GOOF, BUT A BREAK
I would like to congratulate you on your fine coverage. However, there is one little matter in which you goofed. I am referring to the photograph of the Little Brown Jug Running (SI, Jan. 3, Oct. 4). My father, who drove the winning horse, Adios Harry, tells me that Mark Kauffman's photograph is of a trotting race. THE LITTLE BROWN JUG IS A PACING CLASSIC.
GENE MORRIS MacDONALD
•Father MacDonald erred—possibly because one horse (far right) broke just as Photographer Kauffman snapped his picture.—ED.
Listen you! If you expect women to buy and read your silly old sports magazine, you'd better get more articles in it about women. Aren't there plenty of women in sports, such as swimming, diving, tennis, golf, etc.
J. B. GREENUP
Culver City, Calif.
•We're listening. SI does like women—see Jan. 3, Sheila Muldowny, Marion Ladewig; Dec 6, Sarah Palfrey; Nov. 15, Deborah Everitt; Nov. 8, Betty Meckley, Patty Berg; Nov. 1, Josephine Abercombie; Sept. 27, Gussie Moran, etc. and besides we're girl watchers (Dec. 20).—ED.