Barry McDermott's article Tiny Does Very Big Things (Oct. 15) was about as together as Nate Archibald is in his life—on and off whatever court, an NBA floor or a playground in the Bronx. In the world of pro basketball Archibald is truly king of Kings!
The article on Nate Archibald was quite beautiful and took me on a reading experience down roads I never before had traveled. Barry McDermott wrote of reality. Congratulations on the purest article ever written in SI.
Congratulations on your fine in-depth article on Nate Archibald. However, I have to correct your statement, "At UTEP he never averaged more than 16 points a game."
In his junior year Archibald averaged 22.4 points per game. In his senior campaign Tiny averaged 21.4 points per contest, led the Miners to the Western Athletic Conference title and was a unanimous ail-conference selection. Under Head Coach Don Haskins, Archibald was not called upon to score big; defense was the name of the game.
KELP-TV El Paso
October 29, 1973
Nate (Tiny) Archibald is indeed living proof that a good little man can beat a good big man. Archibald has already established this fact by his amazing accomplishment in 1972-73 when he became the only player ever to lead the NBA in scoring and assists in a single season. Well do I remember Tiny when he performed with the Cincinnati Royals before the club was transferred to Kansas City-Omaha. We miss Tiny here in Cincinnati, but I for one am still following his good fortunes with the Kings. Here's wishing this little man continued success in a big way.
WILLIAM F. O'BRIEN
I thoroughly enjoyed your pro basketball issue. Your articles on Tiny Archibald, season previews and pro referees showed excellent perception. I must take exception, however, to your grave disservice in all three
instances to Boston's fine guard Don (Duck) Chancy. In the Nate Archibald piece Chaney appears in a picture with Archibald and Boston's John Havlicek but is mistakenly identified as Paul Silas. The scouting report on the NBA's Atlantic Division mentions Chaney in an afterthought as "the other Boston guard"; and in "The Highest Accolade Is Silence" an NBA coach is quoted as saying a referee shouldn't "care whether it's Oscar Robertson or Don Chaney he's making a call on." Chaney, a heads-up player who scores 13-plus points per game and who is, after Walt Frazier, second to none among NBA defensive guards, deserves a good deal more respect. I am sure he has Oscar Robertson's.
South Weymouth, Mass.
I knew Don Chaney was underrated, but I didn't think it was that bad. Although he was overshadowed at Houston by Elvin Hayes and in Boston by John Havlicek, Jo Jo White and MVP Dave Cowens, Chaney is, in my opinion, one of the best guards in basketball. Excellent on defense, he is probably the premier guard at rebounding, both offensive and defensive. He is also very adept at driving in for layups, and he is improving on his outside shot.
I hate to disagree with you but let me be the first to say that the Boston Celtics are going to win all the beans in the NBA Atlantic this year, and Don Chancy will be a contributing factor. Look for Chaney to be on the All-Star team in the near future.
THE ABA LIVES
Must the fans of the ABA who still care to read SI endure another season of prejudiced professional basketball coverage? One becomes used to rifling through SI and finding action shots and articles only about NBA players. But then to read the subtle little potshots at the ABA even when an ABA team had beaten a top NBA team is too much (Changing the Guards, Oct. 15). In that same article Peter Carry made another typical comment when he wrote, "The ABA, in another try at making its inferior—though rapidly improving—game...."
Did you happen to make note of the "inferior" league's record against the NBA in exhibition games this year? Let me at least review it for you. Of the 25 games played the ABA won 15 and lost 10. But then, the NBA was too busy taking the ABA "to school" to show them how superior they are, weren't they? Come on. We know there are many improvements to be made, but please give credit where it is due.
MRS. WILLIAM AUSTIN
Your choice of the Carolina Cougars as the ABA Eastern Division favorite couldn't have been more correct. A team with centers like Jim Chones and Tom Owens, forwards like Bill Cunningham, Joe Caldwell and Dennis Wuycik and a super guard corps should win the ABA championship. But how about some color photos of duels in the ABA? Caldwell and Julius Erving put on just as good a show as Jerry Sloan and Gail Goodrich.
South Boston, Va.
Peter Carry's article on basketball officials ("The Highest Accolade Is Silence," Oct. 15) was beautifully done and long overdue.
Perhaps nothing would better indicate the importance of these men to the game—and to the real sports fan—than the reaction to an unfortunate theme we recently used in a newspaper ad in San Diego. The ad was intended to illustrate the close proximity fans have to the court in our tiny home facility, and the artist sketched a group of fans at courtside, showing one of them grinning devilishly as he tripped an unsuspecting ref.
It should be gratifying to Bob Bass of the ABA and John Nucatola of the NBA to know that sports fans in the area came down with both feet on the ad theme. The final humiliation came with the receipt of a letter signed by a dozen or more students in a La Jolla, Calif. elementary school, severely criticizing the ad concept. It was very encouraging, nonetheless, to see young people springing to the defense of men who are frequently castigated publicly by their elders. We offer a public apology to the sports fans of San Diego and to the referees, the most maligned men in our business.
Media Relations Director
San Diego Conquistadors
You quote Dolly Stark in your headline and identify him as a basketball official from another era. I know Dolly Stark was a basketball coach at Dartmouth and a baseball umpire in the big leagues. He made news in the mid-'30s by holding out on his baseball contract for $10,000 a year. He said many colorful and truthful things deserving of quotation. I forget how he made out in his strike for higher pay. But who is Dolly King? According to page 138 of your story, he also said, "The highest accolade is silence."
JOHN R. SCOTFORD JR.
•It was Dolly Stark who said it (a printer's error made the transformation), but Dolly King may well have shared his sentiment. A graduate of Long Island University, where he was an outstanding basketball, football and baseball player, King officiated in many high school and college basketball games, most notably in the Eastern College Athletic Conference and the National Invitation Tournament in Madison Square Garden. King also played some professional basketball, and at the time of his death in 1969 he was coaching the basketball team of Manhattan Community College, which he served as director of intercollegiate athletics and professor of student life.—ED.
Tex Maule's article on the Los Angeles Rams (Ramming to the Top, Oct. 15) was excellent. I am glad that Chuck Knox and the Rams are finally getting the recognition they deserve as one of the surprise teams of 1973. I feel that Knox is able to motivate the team as his predecessor, Tommy Prothro, was not. He just may motivate the Rams all the way to the Super Bowl.
I was glad to see Tex Maule's article on the very deserving Los Angeles Rams. I must admit that after their 6-7-1 showing last year and their rather dismal 1973 preseason record, I was a little apprehensive. The Rams have made a believer out of me, however, and I think it is safe to say that before this season is over they will make believers out of a lot of other people.
Woodland Hills, Calif.
Thank you for Robert F. Jones' article about the U.S. Grand Prix (There Are Two Kinds of Death, Oct. 15). His sensitive report most fully and accurately describes the emotions of those of us who were at trackside.
Not having been a witness to Fran√ßois Cevert's tragic crash, I was deeply saddened when his death was announced just prior to the Formula B race on Saturday. I had hoped to see Jackie Stewart win his last race on Sunday and then retire. Jackie did not race, but I still am glad he has retired. Stewart has been much more to racing than a driver; his hard work and sometimes unpopular views regarding driver and spectator safety are well documented. It would be most depressing to lose Jackie in a crash, as we have so many outstanding Formula I drivers in the past few years.
C. KENNETH WILSON
Robert Jones did well to consider and comment on the thoughts and feelings of Jackie Stewart, because the importance of Mr. Stewart to motor sports cannot be overstated. Thanks primarily to Jackie's noble efforts. Grand Prix racing today is infinitely safer than it has ever been. And Watkins Glen is widely considered to be the safest venue with the most professional safety personnel on the Formula I calendar. Still, as was so painfully demonstrated on that fateful Saturday, the sport retains its inherent dangers.
JOHN A. SCHNEIDER JR.
Bay Village, Ohio
First you imply that we Oklahoma University fans are more worried about our mascot than our football (The Top 20, Sept. 10). Then you say a 7-7 tie with No. 1-ranked USC, in which Oklahoma outplayed the Trojans all over the place, is "hardly billboard material" (FOOTBALL'S WEEK, Oct. 8).
When your No. 15 team ties your No. 2 team and then smears Texas, your No. 1 team, that is billboard material!
As an alumnus of Colgate, I enjoyed your article on Tom Parr (No Breaking This Parr. Oct. 15). In this age of big-time overemphasized college football, how many quarterbacks of Parr's stature have had to recruit a college?
Interestingly, in SCORECARD of the same issue you mention Michigan State and the low percentage of student athletes who graduate with their class. We all have read of other college football teams where "no-shows" at graduation time are the rule and not the exception.
Hopefully Parr will have an outstanding season. Whether or not he makes All-America remains to be seen. If he falls short, he will be in good company. Colgate's Marv Hubbard, now of the Oakland Raiders, missed getting All-America honors too!
JOHN F. MOYNAHAN
It is absolutely incomprehensible to me that any sports fans could be as rotten as those of the New York Mets. Their actions in the National League playoffs speak for themselves (SCORECARD, Oct. 22). It was bad enough that someone in the left-field stands threw a whiskey bottle at Pete Rose, but when the wives of the Cincinnati Reds had to be escorted from the Stadium it was too much to believe. When innocent people are threatened with physical violence, something should be done. I sincerely believe the New York organization should be fined a minimum of $250,000.
JOHN L. PAXTOS
Salt Lake City
HOT STOVE STUFF
Strike One against divisional baseball! It is a shame that the representative of the National League in the World Series had to be a team of the caliber of the Mets, whose principal consistency over the past few seasons, including 1973, has been its utter mediocrity.
A five-game playoff does not make a season and, please, let's not harp on the plethora of injuries to Met players during the year. Cincinnati lost a potential 20-game winner (Gary Nolan), an excellent outfielder and offensive cog (Bobby Tolan) and a very good shortstop (Dave Concepcion). The team played with a below-par Johnny Bench for part of the season and still it managed to win almost 100 games! The Reds' record and fine season deserved a better fate.
New York City
It seems that the Big Red Machine has had a problem winning the big game or the big series. Unquestionably, the Cincinnati Reds were underdogs in 1961 when they lost the World Series to the Yankees in five games. They were slight favorites in 1970 when they lost the Series to the Orioles, again in five games. Last year, although they were extremely fortunate to get by the Pirates in the National League playoff, they were definite favorites going into the Series. But, alas, they lost to the Oakland Athletics. This year, after a fine season record, the Reds found the Mets too tough to handle in the short playoff and again dropped by the wayside. Is all this a testament to the fact that the Big Red Machine has an automatic transmission—i.e., no-clutch?
R. A. GILHOOLY
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