George Allen's A Hundred Percent Is Not Enough (July 9) is truly superb. Here is a man who exhibits the qualities and beliefs on which this great nation was founded: hard work has its just rewards. It was a tremendous article, showing perhaps the greatest football mind the game has ever had.
BARRY G. HASTINGS
A Hundred Percent Is Not Enough should put an end to all speculation of how George Allen was able to convert the Redskins from a perennial loser to an NFL powerhouse in one year. This thought-provoking article should be mandatory reading for high school and college students. It is a scholarly lesson for all of us.
You might be interested to know that despite his complete dedication to the Redskins on an around-the-calendar basis Coach Allen still finds time to devote attention and effort to community and charitable endeavors here in Washington. I also can safely say that he gets 110% loyalty from his players, which in the world of the NFL is a real accomplishment.
ROBERT M. JOHNSON
Member, Board of Governors
Touchdown Club of Washington
Amid much fanfare from SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, the Lombardiesque philosophy that winning is the essence of life is apparently enjoying a renaissance, with its disciple now being Coach George Allen of the Washington Redskins. How sad. While some of Allen's sayings ("Never take anything for granted" is an example) arc commendable, others such as "Winning is living" are repulsive. Some people feel that competing and enjoying are a bigger part of life than winning. By this I mean that if a person tries as hard as he can (another Allenism) yet still doesn't win, he may feel just as elated as one who has set a world record. A couple of good examples of this are the Special Olympics and the Wheelchair Olympics. For the people involved in these types of competition there is pure joy in just being able to participate. And if they lose, they do not "die a little."
Maybe Mr. Allen's philosophy "Every time you win, you're reborn; when you lose, you die a little" is good in the narrow world he occupies, but real life does not necessarily work that way.
Come on. George Allen doesn't tell it exactly like it is. He failed to explain that his 110% attitude has included such tactics as trading nonexistent draft choices.
The article by George Allen with Joe Marshall has given me a different viewpoint on Mr. Allen. Until now I had thought of him as a relentless man who cared only about winning games and not about people as individuals. Now I realize that in addition to an intense desire to win, which any good coach must have, he also has deep concern for others and a lot of common sense about life in general. He is very much a human being and many of us have a lot to learn from his philosophy of life.
New York City
All George Allen needs is a giant cookie cutter. Then he could really mold his personnel into the players he wants. Gee, I can remember way back when sports were fun.
NEW STAR IN TEXAS
Thanks for the in-depth story of David Clyde's first game for the Texas Rangers (Bonny Debut for Clyde, July 9). The people of the Dallas-Fort Worth area are finally excited over the Rangers. Last year we went to Arlington Stadium for the novelty of seeing our major league team; this year there was no reason to go—until Clyde came along.
Congratulations on a fine article on rookie Pitcher David Clyde. I agree, though, with Ranger Manager Whitey Herzog: they are asking too much too soon.
Ron Fimrite's article wasn't bad, but comparing David Clyde to Sandy Koufax, Nolan Ryan and Sam McDowell is going a little too far. Clyde may have filled the stadium and won his first game but he is no Koufax. Not yet. He does have a good-looking girl friend, though.
Summit, S. Dak.
Spare Ted Williams the blame for the Ranger wreckage. Ted's managerial deficiency was simply coming up Short.
Glens Falls, N.Y.
BUFFALO'S NEW BRAVE
Congratulations to Jane Gross and SI for a fine article on Ernie DiGregorio (In the Braves' New World, a Cookie Doesn't Crumble, July 9). He has proven at Providence, in the Russian series and at rookie camp that he is truly a superstar. With Ernie on the Braves' roster, the city of Buffalo has a good chance of having a playoff contender.
After reading with sadness about S.S. Wolfzapper in Last Battle in a Most Foreboding Land (July 2) I recalled Aldo Leopold's memories (A Sand County Almanac) of his first wolf hunt and the awareness he gained:
"We reached the old wolf in time to watch a fierce green fire dying in her eyes. I realized then, and have known ever since, that there was something new to me in those eyes—something known only to her and to the mountain. I was young then, and full of trigger-itch; I thought that because fewer wolves meant more deer, that no wolves would mean hunters' paradise. But after seeing the green fire die, I sensed that neither the wolf nor the mountain agreed with such a view...."
MARK A. LARSON
I thoroughly enjoyed Robert F. Jones' article on salmon fishing in British Columbia. I especially enjoyed his portrayal of S.S. Wolfzapper. It ranks as SI's best article since I began reading the magazine.
Last Battle is one of the most beautiful pieces of descriptive writing I have read.
JOHN H. SCHUSTER
North Windham, Conn.
Kenny Moore is to be commended for his article on Bob Hayes (Hey, Look Who's Become a Bigwig, July 2), who was treated unfairly last year by the Cowboys.
A lot of people cannot figure out Tom Landry. For instance, he shuffles Craig Morton and Roger Staubach at quarterback and then when he finally decides to start Staubach, the Cowboys win the Super Bowl. Maybe if Landry started Hayes and Staubach they would win the Super Bowl again. I just hope for the Cowboys' sake that Hayes does not get traded and then come back to haunt them. If Hayes is given a chance, he will prove himself, and a chance is all he is asking for. If not, I guess Bullet Bob will still be the fastest wig-seller around.
As far as I am concerned Bumbling Bob Hayes can go run track and sell wigs all year. How can he try to put the blame on Craig Morton by saying, "Morton is not the best bomb thrower"? Two bombs that Morton threw to Hayes were perfect, and sure touchdowns, but Hayes dropped them.
Also, in referring to the Ron Sellers trade you said Dallas got Otto Stowe and a No. 2 pick for Sellers. That is wrong. Dallas got Stowe while Miami got Sellers and a No. 2 pick. But I agree that it should have been the other way around.
As a Redskin fan I have booed the Dallas Cowboys for several years, but I have to give three cheers to Kenny Moore for his fascinating article on Bob Hayes, a cool Cowboy and super speedster.
You went too far this time with Kenny Moore's story of Bob Hayes fashioning wigs. This is a sports magazine, not Men Today.
Bill Walton looked like a slob at Swen Nater's wedding (PEOPLE, July 2). His hair resembled a rat's nest, he was wearing a short-sleeve shirt and, judging from the picture, blue jeans that looked like they were about to fall off. Come on, Bill. Take a couple of tips from Walt Frazier.
Since weight lifting has never been known to suffer from too much publicity, I hesitate to be critical of anyone who writes about it. However, there arc shortcomings in your June 25 story that just cannot be ignored. The title, Clean Wins for Determined Non-Jerks, bombs out completely and the text leads one to suspect that Dan Levin lacks a deep understanding of the sport.
Freddie Lowe's exploits certainly deserved to be acknowledged, but on this particular occasion Phil Grippaldi's performance hardly compared with some of the other big moments. I don't mean to knock Phil, because over the years he has been one of our country's shining lights. But Bob Bednarski's return to the heavyweight throne after a long period in limbo was a far more dramatic event.
Also, for those able to transcend the image of weight lifters as beefy lunks, there was no bigger thrill than the triumph of York Barbell's Don Warner. By winning the flyweight crown on his first try this fine little athlete became—at the tender age of 14—the youngest senior national champion in history.
BRUCE AND BIG A
Upon reading John Underwood's article Golf's Jekyll & Hyde (June 18) I realized that your talented writer had once again uncovered one of golf's antiheroes. The story revealed the conflicts of a very human though much misunderstood and misjudged Bruce Crampton. I am confident that in the near future this golfing perfectionist will possess a following of loyal rooters.
On June 24 Crampton won his fourth title of the year with a three-stroke victory in the American Golf Classic, increasing his year's earnings to $204,209. But even more significant than his victory in the tournament was the sincere greeting Bruce gave to the fans. Before you know it "Mr. Hyde" will fade away.
I have long admired Bruce Crampton as a golfer, and after having read John Underwood's article I admire him even more as a man. The kind of honesty and integrity he possesses seems to have become a thing of the past, unfortunately.
As for personality, I was happy to read about his new Big A philosophy. I know it is working because I have seen it in action. I was watching Crampton tee off last spring
during the Greater Jacksonville Open when I noticed a man in the gallery rattling the change in his pocket. Crampton also noticed, and politely asked the man to stop. After he had hit his shot Bruce walked over to the man, smiled and told him that jangling change was a nervous habit he had, too. Following the exchange Crampton walked off down the fairway leaving everyone in the gallery smiling. Does that sound like Mr. Hyde?
RICHARD M. COWART
May I raise three rousing cheers for Bruce Crampton? Being somewhat of a "dour Scot" myself, I have deep empathy for his poor choice of words, but it pleases me to know that there is one thoroughly honest man alive in the world. I hope he will never try so hard to be liked that he will turn black and white to gray.
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