Oh, come on now, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED. Two years in a row with this nonsense about Harvard football is too much (Who Loves Harvard?, Nov. 4). The Johnnies are excited about football nowadays because they are winning, and they are winning because they are recruiting. It's that simple.
Last year your Cantab-oriented staff tried to persuade us that the Crimson athletes were the smoothest combination of intellect and beef ever gathered together in one locker room. This year we are told that tradition is something of which Harvard has "a great deal more than anyone else." Well, the article is about football, and we'd suggest that you check the alltime records of Harvard football teams against those made by men in Yale blue. They might teach you something about tradition.
PAUL E. STEIGER
WILLIAM R. SCHULTZ
New Haven, Conn.
Alfred Wright's story was not only an admirable commentary on the football festivities at the Harvard "coliseum" but also a remarkable study of her fair-haired gladiators. Strange must be the mannerisms of the Crimson gentlemen who preserve their Hollywood looks and best friendship even on the field. This must be part of Harvard's long and glorious tradition in the game of football.
We seem to recall a venerable institution in Connecticut that boasts a more tangible tradition, a better football record through the years, and such names as Amos Alonzo Stagg, Walter Camp and Albie Booth, men whose ties did not have to blow unnoticed over their shoulders.
November 18, 1963
How nice it is to hear that the team has requited the love of the student body—and that the Cliffies are still fighting Harvard fiercely.
What hath John Harvard wrought?
WILLIAM A. BURCK III
PETER R. McCOMBS
F. BRADFORD NIEBLING
New Haven, Conn.
Apparently the Harvard definition of maturity includes the chanting of "the ref beats his wife" and the unsportsmanlike waving of white handkerchiefs at the conclusion of the game. It is certainly a paradox that Dartmouth can be judged uncouth when one compares these manifestations of immaturity with the proud acceptance of defeat by the Dartmouth students.
We shall be able to bear the burden of this loss of ephemeral grandeur because we know that we possess something that transcends athletic accomplishment, a love for our school. For indeed, sir, who does love Harvard?
ROBERT D. RESNIKOFF
KENNETH R. ELLIS
I think most Dartmouth men would like it known that we consider your article Who Loves Harvard? extremely unfair. Wright's biased viewpoint disturbed us "fiercely," and, although you are considered the vanguard of taste and propriety in the sporting world, what you said about Harvard was downright nasty They may have beaten us, broken our winning streak and our hearts, but they certainly don't deserve such a literary drubbing.
PHILIP H. WADE
Harvard's Coach Yovicsin should have remained mum until after the Pennsylvania game.. The Quakers took to hear his statement that "defense is very definitely the most important part of the game, and kicking is next." Using exactly that formula, Penn upset the Crimson 7-2. Thanks, Mr. Yovicsin
ALFRED G. HARE JR.
"Who loves Harvard?" We here at the University of Pennsylvania do! And with good reason. The Crimson provided us with the happiest weekend in my four years as an undergraduate.
Australia's Tony Sneazwell, whose high jump of 7 feet 2½ inches highlighted the pre-Olympic meet at Tokyo (A Very Dry Run in Tokyo, Oct. 28), is not quite as "unknown" as you might think, nor was Russia's knowledgeable coach, Gabriel Korobkov, stunned at all by the performance.
Sneazwell first became a seven-footer last February and has been considered a likely prospect to challenge the supremacy of the U.S.S.R.'s Valeri Brumel. Korobkov admitted this in a recent interview with a reporter of L'Equipe, Paris sports daily. He expects Sneazwell and Brumel to reach 7 feet 6½ inches during the next year and to be on even terms when they meet in the Tokyo Olympics. Sneazwell has done exceptionally well without yet acquiring the faultless form and technique of Brumel.
Neither Brumel nor Sneazwell can be expected to do much more than 7 feet 6 because of his relatively normal height of about 6 feet l. The man who will eventually clear the eight-foot mark must be a basketball player with the capabilities of Brumel. The U.S. may have that man in the person of John Rambo: 18 years old, 6 feet 7 inches tall, he cleared seven feet last spring.
FUEL ON THE FIRE
It pleasures this old Yankee-lover more than somewhat to see a couple of recalcitrants arise against your Yankee-baiting 19TH HOLE hot-stovers. Is there anywhere a Yankee-hater who honestly thinks that the Dodgers would not welcome any Yankee regular on their team?
Monte Vista, Colo.
I don't understand why you even bother to print those letters from diehard Yankee-worshipers.
JAMES L. KAPLAN
New Haven, Conn.
I have had about enough of these claims that no NL club could place three men on the Yankee starting lineup, so I decided to do some impartial research on the subject. 1 think that the results are quite edifying.
I have devised eight categories: batting average, home runs, runs, stolen bases, RBIs, extra base hits, fielding average and errors, with batting average, home runs and run production weighted double—11 in all.
The results for three teams in the National League are quite interesting. For the Giants we find that Cepeda beats Pepitone in nine departments and loses in only two. Felipe Alou beats Maris in seven and loses in four. McCovey beats Tresh in eight, while losing three. The situation of Mays and Mantle is complicated by the fact that Mantle didn't play enough of a season to really be meaningful. Still Mays won or tied (in batting average) in every department I found. There are at least three, maybe four, safe entries for the Yankee lineup.
As for the Cards we find that Groat beats Kubek in six departments, losing in five. White leads Pepitone in seven, loses in two and ties two. Ken Boyer leads his brother Clete in eight and loses in three. The situation of Flood and Mantle is the same that came up before. A careful examination of the record, though, would show that Flood was quite a good ballplayer last season. Here again we find three and possibly four.
The Dodgers are the most interesting of all. Tommy Davis winds up losing to Tresh 5-6. And Wills loses to Kubek by the same score. As these were the two players generally conceded to have the best chance to replace their Yankee counterparts, I must admit to some puzzlement. But Gilliam beats Richardson 10-0 with one tie. And Howard leads Maris by 8-2 with one tie also. These scores leave no room for doubt, if a little for surprise. It might be that Gilliam is the most underrated ballplayer of today. With Kou-fax and Perranoski, two pitchers who could make any team in history, the Dodgers also have four safe entries.
Does anyone still think no National League club could get three players in the Yankee starting lineup?
I'm sure everyone who knows Raider Coach Al Davis appreciated your portrait of him ("I Need Points" Nov. 4). Walter Bingham captured Al's dynamism and warmth and gave him his due as a super-salesman and recruiter. But, in the process, he failed to pinpoint the real reasons for Al's meteoric success: his uncanny knack for appraising football talent and his ability to communicate with players. As a young coach of 21 (at Adelphi College), Al was already writing recondite football articles for coaching magazines and establishing himself as a creative football thinker. After all, you don't take a sow's car like the Raiders and, without the benefit of a draft or any great expenditure of money, transform it into a highly respectable silk purse without being a pretty good teacher.
HERMAN L. MASIN
New York City
If you find our Olympic athletes turned huckster so distasteful (SCORECARD, Oct. 28), why not do something more constructive than criticize?
If every true sports fan reading your magazine would send $1 to the Olympic Fund our athletes could put all their efforts into the Olympics for '64!
•The address: U.S. Olympic Association, 57 Park Avenue, New York 16, N.Y.—ED.