Pete Rozelle? Even the great iguana hunter, Richard Burton, has more credentials.
Excellent job on Rozelle. He well deserves it. Please extend kudos to Writer Ken Rudeen. I wish I had a blowup of the cover for framing.
The south end of Kelso running north would have been more deserving.
K. B. WEESHOFF
I must say the sight of football's Rozelle on your special start-of-the-year cover gave me something of a shock, but Rudeen's masterfully organized arguments convinced me that the NFL commissioner was indeed a worthy choice.
New York City
Congratulations on your bowl game picks and astute call of the Giants and Bears game (Dec. 23). Your record is beautiful: three right, six wrong. Next December I suggest you poll the lowliest fan in Jasper Mills, Ohio. He could do better by tossing a coin.
Please have Tex Maule repeat after me: "Everything west of Yankee Stadium isn't Bridgeport. Everything west of Yankee Stadium isn't Bridgeport. Everything...."
Park Ridge, Ill.
You never did print your final season's record for college football predictions. Could it be you were just too ashamed? Judging by your astounding .375 average for the bowl games, I cannot believe it was a case of modesty.
New York City
•Yes, it was. Our pickers crawled out on a limb 203 times last season (handicapping only the toughest games), got 127 right, 68 wrong and tied 8 for an average of .651.—ED.
MAULED BY BEARS
Regarding Tex Maule's articles on Tittle and the title: nuts!
What a waste of words to prove nothing. I'll bet they taste terrible. Here's 1,000 cheers to George Halas, his world champion Bears and little ole Wrigley Field.
Pinellas Park, Fla.
It appears to me, a typical Bear fan, that Tex Maule should have known the facts concerning the NFL title game. It was shown that it's almost impossible for one of the better quarterbacks in football to penetrate the best defense. I concede that Tittle is an accomplished passer, hitting Morrison, Thomas, Gifford and King, along with Morris, Whitsell, O'Bradovich, McRae and Petitbon. At least, Tittle's not prejudiced. Next time Mr. Maule makes a prediction concerning the Bears, the world's No. 1 team, let's hope he doesn't base it on such paper-thin facts.
Glen Ellyn, Ill.
The many intemperate fans, now gloating with glee, who wrote to denounce Tex Maule before the championship game between the Bears and the Giants will, no doubt, want his hide for their pigskin memories, because he picked the Giants. Mr. Maule is, in my opinion, the greatest pro football expert in the history of that game. He knows the teams, the players, the plays far better than the amateur bettors who are sore winners as well as sore losers. Sport, they should realize by now, if it is real sport and not just a sure thing, has a large element of chance and accident. Before burning Tex Maule in effigy they should remember the retort of Oliver Cromwell: "I beseech you...think it possible you may be mistaken."
It has always been my contention that you measured a great team by not only its starting team, but its bench as well. If the Giants did not have the bench to fill in for the injured players, then quite naturally it was not the better of the two teams on the field. When absent players are being mentioned, it might be well to remember that the Bears were without some of their starters also. Earl Leggett, for instance. He is one of the real great defensive tackles in football and was injured three weeks before the playoff. In spite of these key injuries, which Mr. Maule failed to mention, the Bears proved their right to the title of world champions of pro football (whether those minor league fans of the AFL like it or not, and in this respect I agree with Mr. Maule).
ARTHUR L. GOSS
ROOM TO CHEER
From what I have read in our local paper, scores of people were turned away when they attempted to buy tickets at the NFL championship because the venue was Wrigley Field. If they were smart, the Bears would move when their lease is up to Soldier Field with its capacity of 110,000, just as your magazine recommended a month ago (SCORECARD, Dec. 16).
Your special issue on sports in the Orient (Dec. 23) is an outstanding contribution. After working with the Olympic associations in several of the Far Eastern countries last summer, I can attest to the objectivity of your articles on the Orient.
The American Association for Health, Physical Education and Recreation has the privilege of screening physical educators and coaches to serve overseas for the Department of State's Cultural Presentations program. Until the recent Games of the New Emerging Forces, held in Indonesia, Cambodia had won only a single medal in international sports competition. At GANEFO, Cambodian athletes won a total of 12 medals and, interestingly enough, they were won only in the three sports that were coached by Americans.
Al Wright in his article, High Scorer with Either Hand, very ably portrays the role of sports as an important and integral part of the culture of the Cambodian people. This is true in most of the emerging nations of the world. American physical educators and coaches, who for the past several years have assisted these nations in organizing their physical education and sports programs, should be congratulated for the significant role they are playing in improving international understanding through mutual interest in sports.
For the Rome Olympics, 13 emerging nations selected American coaches, who had previously worked with them as consultants, to coach their Olympic teams.
ROSWELL D. MERRICK
Assistant Executive Secretary, AAHPER
In his article on Cambodia, Alfred Wright pays deserved tribute to the coaching abilities of Messrs. Sorsby, Reavis, Appel et al. However, I feel that there has been a noteworthy omission.
Harry Bright, a good half-miler a few years back, served our State Department as coach of Cambodia's track and field team from mid-1960 to mid-1962. Harry put in long hours pioneering the track and field program, trying to build a representative Cambodian team. Some of the difficulties confronting him were: a sapping climate, mediocre competitive drive, a dearth of facilities and equipment, and governmental and international politics. Even with these adversities I know that through his effort and desire he helped pave the way for some of his more publicized successors in improving Cambodia's athletic stature.
CHARLES H. CARTER
Ocean Shores, Wash.
In your PEOPLE section in the January 6 issue you showed Chief Justice Earl Warren and Governor Pat Brown of California on a duck hunt. The gun the Chief Justice is holding on his shoulder looks like the small .410 shotgun, such as is often recommended for boy beginners. Mr. Warren seems quite heavy enough to take the recoil of a magnum 12-gauge.
Is his weapon the meager .410, and if so what did he hit with it? Or is the skinny barrel a trick of perspective?
Sands Point, N.Y.
•The Chief Justice was shown carrying a 28-gauge shotgun, which falls between a 20-gauge and a .410. When shooting geese, Warren (at 210 pounds) always uses a 12-gauge, but for ducks he sometimes likes to switch to a lighter gun. On that day he used both well, bagged the limit: six ducks, six geese.—ED.
Your article, Alley Fights on the Ice (Dec. 23), gives a very definite false impression to those not familiar with the game of hockey. To try to correlate penalty minutes and standings of the clubs in the National Hockey League makes for a false analogy. Every time a player incurs a penalty, his team must play with one less man than the opposing team. If you compile statistics on how many goals are scored when one team is a man short due to a penalty, you will have a more accurate gauge of the effect of roughness in professional hockey.
The ability to outskate, outshoot and out-score the opposition is what wins hockey games, not roughness per se. Statistics on penalty minutes and standings of the teams arc merely coincidental. One can never out-skate or outshoot the other team while being a man short. The team which gets more shots on the opposing goalie is generally the winning team.
Good playmaking, stickhandling, shooting and legal checking—not fights—are what spectators should appreciate in hockey games. Don't encourage dangerous roughness in your articles.
HENRY F. FLETCHER
Roughness adds to the excitement.
Massapequa Park, N.Y.
It irks me to see National Hockey League players, the possessors of a skill and a dexterity unequaled by participants in any other sport, make fools of themselves.
By stumbling over the ice and trying to pull the wool (jerseys) over the eyes of opposing players, these athletes do not blind conscientious hockey fans to the fact that back alley fights deprive the sport of the respect it deserves. Good, hard, bone-rattling checks and rough play are and always will be part of the game and are what make hockey such an exciting sport. However, the hanky-panky that goes on during the brawls borders on the ridiculous.
The players in the National Hockey League are the best, and the game they play is the greatest, but if the brawls continue to increase they are going to have a hard time proving it.
JOHN A. PORTER
I enjoyed Herman Weiskopf's article on NHL brawls very much. However, I strongly disagree with his statement that the Hawks are "a cinch for the championship."
Last year the Hawks were also a cinch but blew a nine-point lead and lost to Toronto. The same thing appears to be happening this year. Both Montreal and Toronto are closing the gap greatly already.
The Hawks, so far, have suffered no serious injuries to their superstars, as Toronto and Montreal have. The Leafs lost All-Star Defenseman Carl Brewer for much of the season, while Bernie Geoffrion and Henri Richard have not been healthy for the Canadiens. It is interesting to note that Toronto has had a healthy team in only four of its first 30 games.
Also, Coach Reay has been playing Chicago's three major stars, Pilote, Hull and Mikita, nearly 40 minutes a game, a pace which I doubt can be kept up all season.