You will get a flood of comment on A. Whitney Griswold's verbose article The.Best of Two Worlds (SI, Oct. 17).
To clarify itfor some short-sentence boys like myself—football is here to stay. It isanimated chess. There are thousands of us who study it as avidly as others dobridge, chess, or other "mental" games. We watch football wherever andwhenever we can—sandlot, junior high, high school, college, pro.
Some of us ithelped get through college in the depression years, and we are grateful. Wewould like to see other boys able to help finance their way by it.
Colleges are forstudents. Students can play football, as Princeton, Yale, Rice, Tulane andother schools have convincingly demonstrated.
What we need isbetter coaching—which would automatically develop if the emphasis were to shiftback to coaching instead of material—and we aficionados would see moreinteresting ball.
To give you aninstance: in recent years the Southwest Conference, once an incubator offootball ideas, has begun to field teams playing almost identical systems. Towin, they have to have superior material, and the race is on. They can nolonger look over a bunch of eager student candidates and evolve a team playingthe best men using the most likely system.
T. S. WHITECLOUD, M.D.
President Griswold is entirely correct in saying that "the main purpose ofan educational institution is education," but the evils of intercollegiateathletic competition will continue. It will take the same kind of revolution inthe human mind and spirit as would be required to eliminate war to achieve thismain purpose. Possible, yes ... but not likely in the foreseeable future.
ERNEST W. MANDEVILLE
I have just finished reading Dr. Griswold's fine article. I did not realizeuntil I saw his picture that I had the pleasure of riding with him from Bostonto New Haven by train a couple of summers ago. I was very impressed by this manwho mentioned he was connected with Yale University and was very interested inwhat I thought of college and collegiate athletics. When I began to askquestions, the train was pulling into New Haven, and we were parting. Thosequestions are now answered thanks to SI and Dr. Griswold. May I say hisconception of and conclusions on the subject carry strength for the Big Ten aswell as the State of Maine Series where with less pressure everyone gets justas excited.
Congratulationsto you and Sportswriter par excellence Griswold for a fine article on collegeathletics.
President Griswold comments on the origin of college football, stating that"the American game started with a contest between Harvard and Yale in1875." However, the first intercollegiate football game was betweenPrinceton and Rutgers colleges in 1869, played at Rutgers.
The RutgersTargum publication of that era gives an account of the game, which I quote inpart:
"OnSaturday, November 6,1869, Princeton sent 25 picked men to play our 25 a matchgame of football. The strangers came at 10 o'clock and brought a good number ofbackers with them. After dinner and a stroll around town, during which strollbilliards received a good deal of attention, the crowd began to assemble at theball grounds. Previous to calling the game the ground presented an animatedappearance. Grim looking players were silently stripping, each one surroundedby sympathizing friends. While around each captain was a little crowd, intentupon giving advice and saying as much as possible.... "
The Targum sizedup the game in these words: "To sum up, the Princeton men had the mostmuscles, but didn't kick very well, and wanted organization. They evidentlydon't like to kick the ball on the ground. Headlong running, wild shouting andfrantic kicking and goal tenders marked the contest.... "
HARRY L. BOWLBY
•To a similarchallenge from Rutgers, SI replied in its first 19TH HOLE (Aug. 30, 1954):"They may have been dying for dear old Rutgers in that game with Princeton... but they were playing soccer" even though someone may have broken therules by running with the ball that day in 1869. American football evolved fromHarvard's adaption of the Rugby football game and rules: 15 men to a side, anegg-shaped ball, the drop kick and ball carrying, although "the littlecrowd around each captain intent upon giving advice and saying as much aspossible" undoubtedly was pioneering today's quarterback clubs.—ED.
I feel I have to speak out on the Jimmy Jemail question (SI, Oct. 24) ofwhether pro football will ever cut deeply into college football interest.
If it ever does,it should be over pro football's dead body.
As a former profootball sportswriter, I used to sit in on bull sessions involving GeorgeHalas, Curly Lambeau, Steve Owen, ad infinitum, wherein this subject was wellwarmed over.
The inevitableconclusion was that if anything ever happened to kill the public fascinationfor college football...then the pros would have to go back to sandlotdimensions.
What other sportor business has ready-made stars, big names, spectacular performers created forthem over a four-year incubating period as does pro football? The pros are onthe biggest gravy train in the country today.
They don't spenda penny teaching or promoting kids like Alan Ameche, Ralph Guglielmi, GeorgeShaw, et al. They merely meet in. New York, or Cleveland or Detroit and draftthe names off a big board. Publicity-wise, there is nothing like it insports.
Even the tinyschools have become known to the fan through pro football...simply because oneof their "big frogs in a small pool" made good in New York, Chicago,Washington or Los Angeles. The pros, in my opinion, have contributed a greatdeal to college football success, just as much—almost—as the colleges havecontributed to the pros.
SI,incidentally, has done a magnificent job of bringing new dimensions and newinterest to the sporting whirl. Twisting the old rhubarb around, everybody wastalking about sports, but you folks finally did something about it!
THE AMERICA'SCUP: A MEMORY ONLY?
In Jimmy Jemail's HOTBOX (SI, Sept. 5) Grace Kelly states that she is desirousof seeing the Newport America's Cup Race revived, and Navy Secretary Thomasasserts that it "should be revived."
AlthoughSecretary Murphy and others believe that it is impossible for the race toreturn because of today's cumbersome taxes, Mr. Murphy does feel thatsyndicates could bring back the onetime "greatest sports event in theworld."
I have read yourattacks against boxing's dirty business and your efforts which resulted in theowners of Nashua and Swaps consenting to a race between the two horses; nowperhaps SI would be willing to add to its list of worthwhile and successfulundertakings an attempt to make the America's Cup Race a reality once again inlieu of the vague but impressive memory that it is today.
•For somereminiscences of the great old rivalry and authoritative suggestions for amodern revival, see E&D's "The Sleeping Giant," page 12.—ED.
Being an ardent admirer of Mr. Reshevsky, I was naturally quite fascinated byyour editorial tribute to him (SI, Oct. 17). Consequently I found "Havel'sProblem" a most interesting challenge, though I will admit the solutionbelow took considerably more than 30 minutes.
[This articlecontains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]
Am I or am I notcelebrating a hollow victory?
I have found Havel's chess problem not unconquerable:
2. KB-KB3 mate
I solved the problem in 35 minutes by moving the White pieces four straighttimes, leaving the Black stable. Here is my solution: K-B7, B-B2, B-B5,R-B5.
Chula Vista, Calif.
I have been studying it for two days and have not yet solved it.
•Neither havethe Messrs. Ricchenti, Levi and Terrel nor the many other readers who sent SItheir "solutions." To end the suspense, here are the magic moves: thekey first move, Kt-B6, limits Black to three possible moves.
Following eachof these alternatives:
1 Kt-B6, K-Q3; 2 B-B2, P-K5; 3 R-Q2ch, KxKt; 4 B-Q7 mate. If Black moves2...K-Q4; 3 Kt-Kt4ch, K-Q3; 4 B-B5 mate. If Black moves 3...K-K5;4 R-B4mate.
1 Kt-B6, K-K5; 2 Kt-Kt4, K-K6; 3 BxP, K-K5; 4 R-K2 mate. If Black moves2...K-Q5; 3 B-B2ch, K-K5; 4 R-B4 mate.
1 Kt-B6, P-K5; 2 Kt-K7ch, K-Q5; 3 B-K2, K-K6; 4 Kt-B5 mate. If Black moves3...P-K6; 4 R-B4 mate.
Before you consider Mr. Metcalfe's suggestion that you sponsor the Lhasa apsodog on the Place the Face television program (19TH HOLE, Oct. 3), take myadvice and avoid a certain fiasco.
No amount ofdisguise could fool any literate American who knows Li'l Abner's old friendHairless Joe when he sees him.
I am intrigued,however, by the possibility that the pride of the Dalai Lamas may have comefrom Dogpatch, U.S.A.; surely Al Capp would not dare deceive us with some $150Manchu darling from Tibet?
JOHN M. RICHARD
•Al Capp,challenged by SI to explain this hairy coincidence, delved into his collectionof prehistoric cave strips and with pen and brush replied as follows:
October 18, 1955
Mr. Richard is, of course, entirely right. Hairless Joe and the Lhasa Apso arebrothers under the hair. It happened this way.
At the dawn of.time, one prehistoric hair ball rolled out of a cave, and soon, as wasdestined, met another prehistoric hairball of the opposite sex.
Soon, there werefour hairballs.
The familydrifted apart. One line developed first into the now extinct Bearded Herringthen, eons later, there appeared on land the bewhiskered monster known as theTyrannasaurus Gabbihayes which, in modern times, reached its finest flower inHairless Joe.
Now the otherline went this way. It first evolved into the Old English Sheepfish and then,after it became amphibious it developed into the fabled Fullerbrush lizard andthen, scarcely eight billion years
later, it turned up in Tibet as the Lhasa Apso (which in Tibetan means "theHairless Joe Dog.")
I hope thistakes the bitterness out of the controversy.
HISTORY IN THEMAKING
The excellent drawing of the memorable Sandy Amoros catch in the seventh gameof the 1955 World Series that appears in your October 17th issue must be apermanent display in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Would you do us and baseballthis honor?
SID C. KEENER
National Baseball Hall of Fame
•SI and ArtistRobert Riger are glad to contribute this bit of history to the Baseball Hall ofFame. The original drawing, suitably framed, is on its way.—ED.
It is time I wrote you adding my congratulations on the excellence of SI.
The thing Inotice each week is the ability your writers have to create the atmosphere ofthe event they are reporting. The pleasure it brings to me is that having onceread the magazine I still savor the articles for weeks following.
My particularsporting activity is golf. Jimmy Jemail's Oct. 17 HOTBOX, Is Golf an AthleticContest?, brought out personality traits of the respondents.
To Tex McCrary Iwould like to extend an invitation to foot Seattle's Inglewood Country Clubhills with me. He'll get his good sweat.
It is evidentthat Herbert White is only a casual golfer. Otherwise he would appreciate theopportunities provided in golf for courage and combativeness.
Tony Carvajalought to get out of the flat lands of Texas and play a little golf with some ofus mountain goats.
Possibly EdWynne has the best answer: "Not necessarily." Golf is what you makeit.
While I'm at it,I'm enclosing my dollar for a guest membership to the Happy Knoll Country Club.Pretty cheap for a round on that wonderful course. Naturally, the dollar is forthe Olympic Fund.
THE GREATESTSPORTING ACHIEVEMENT
Golf is certainly an athletic contest in every sense of the word! Football,baseball, hockey, basketball, tennis, rowing and the like are generallyregarded as such, and rightly so. However, most of these require team play forsuccess, whereas golf, for the most part, is an individual effort, physicallyand mentally!
In February,1944, the AP ran a story concerning an AP poll of sportswriters over the nationabout the three greatest feats in the history of sports.
The three greatachievements were:
1) The grand slam of golf, Bobby Jones in 1930.
2) The great pitching, outfielding and home-run hitting of Babe Ruth.
3) The record running, broad jumping and hurdling of Jesse Owens. Bobby Jonesled with 97 votes, Ruth 39, and Owens 27. Among others considered and voted onwere Jim Thorpe, Ty Cobb, Jack Dempsey, Red Grange, Lou Gehrig, Max Schmeling,Christy Mathewson, Joe Louis, Carl Hub-bell, Gene Tunney, Johnny Vander Meer(two successive no-hit games), Knute Rockne, Walter Hagen, Henry Armstrong andof course many others, but the above three were way out in front.
CHARLES L. GLEASON
BASENJI TO AT?
In Pensacola, Florida this summer my husband and I became fond of a cute straydog that stayed around our house there. We brought him back to New Orleans withus. In EVENTS & DISCOVERIES, Sept. 19 we were surprised to read about theBasenji, since we had never heard of such a dog, and, surprisingly, thecharacteristics you mention fitted our Tramp to a T. Our dog is about 17½inches high (male), with a sharp muzzle, a tightly curled tail and ears like afox terrier. His coat is short, a brilliant red-orange, and there is a whitespot on his chest. He does not bark, but entertains us with his"talking" (sounding for the most part like a good yodel). To go alittle further, he even cleans himself like a cat by licking. I must admit hedoes have a canine odor, and I have never seen him shed tears, but he is a goodretriever of anything we throw out. At times he even tends to point like a realhunting dog.
Of course, weare still inclined to believe that Tramp is not a purebred Basenji, but we areinterested in learning more about the dogs. May we have a little moreinformation about the Basenjis? A picture would help, too.
•The Basenji orAfrican barkless dog dates back, according to Basenji Breeder Bettina BelmontWard, to the Egyptian Pharaohs, but did not become successfully established inthe U.S. until the 1930s. They are a small deerlike dog about 17 inches high,with long legs, a smooth, short shiny coat, ears set high and forward and dark,almond-shaped eyes between which is a mass of wrinkles. Although they do notbark they have been known to laugh, yodel, cry and make faces. Their ownersreport them as being "endearing and utterly adorable."—ED.