We waited in anxious anticipation all week. Which shot would it be on the cover of SI? Goalie Jim Craig standing on the ice, draped in the American flag? Captain Mike Eruzione standing on the winners' platform, gold on his chest, hand on his heart, singing the national anthem? Or maybe the shocked Soviets with that "Who are those guys?" look on their faces? But when my March 3 SI arrived—with the picture of America's Team, showing all the joy, enthusiasm and pride that all Americans felt—it was easy to see why SI is the No. 1 sports magazine going.
How do you capture one of the greatest moments in sports history? Just ask SI photographer Heinz Kluetmeier—he did it.
BARRY A. CRAIG
Heinz Kluetmeier's cover shot is the greatest sports picture you have ever published. I have every issue back to July 1967 and I can't remember ever being moved so much by a sports photograph. A history of the Olympics published 50 years from now will surely include Kluetmeier's shot. The timing of this victory over the Soviets is as important as the victory itself. We needed this. Congratulations on Kluetmeier's majestic work.
MARK R. CAVANAUGH
Surely your cover of the victorious U.S. Olympic hockey team—without caption—is the most eloquent you have ever printed.
March 17, 1980
When I saw the cover I started whooping and hollering all over again, as did my roommates. We stood in the apartment cheering for five minutes. All the love, patriotism, and sheer joy America's Team evoked came back. My God, how that hockey team inspired me!
Travelers Rest, S.C.
You've got me shivering and singing God Bless America all over again.
NEAL N. MODELEVSKY
The cover picture comes as close as possible to re-creating the feeling we all experienced at what has to rank as the most magical moment in sports ever. The symbolism of the American flag in place of the letters US in your magazine's title is just perfect. It has been a long time since Old Glory has been so proudly hailed.
Impressed as I was with the cover, I could not conceive of a more artistic application of the camera in capturing this moment—until I turned to Eric Schweikardt's picture of Mike Eruzione's golden goal against the U.S.S.R. on pages 16 and 17. The emotion virtually jumps off those pages and into your heart. It is almost as if the Soviet goalie is crumbling in front of the irresistible force of the enthusiasm of those great young Americans. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for preserving a moment I will cherish forever.
ROBERT A. CATINA
Eric Schweikardt's camera froze a scene that tells a whole story. It reminds me of the kind of setting Artist Norman Rockwell used to depict American life.
WILLIAM A. HERR
Could it be that this trouble-plagued, controversial Winter Olympics will serve as the catalyst that leads to the end of the Vietnam syndrome and the negativism and self-flagellation of the '70s? Perhaps future historians may mark this small event on the world stage as the beginning of a new era in the United States, one in which the people started on the long road back toward traditional feelings of positivism and patriotism and a renewal of the faith of our forefathers that America is a great country despite all of its warts and blemishes.
GORDON S. HODGSON
Falls Church, Va.
Your Olympic coverage was magnificent. Even though television commentators and print journalists were reduced to melodramatic blubbering about Tai and Randy, awestruck accounts of Eric Heiden and sheer speechlessness over the U.S. hockey team, your writers put the drama and emotion and euphoria of the Games in perfect perspective. And the photography, as always, was unsurpassed.
If SPORTS ILLUSTRATED doesn't give a gold medal to silver-tongued Bob Ottum for his Winter Olympic reporting it should at least bronze his typewriter.
JON P. KRAUSHAR
New York City
TO GO OR NOT TO GO
I haven't decided whether to support the boycott of the Summer Olympics, but if our athletes can give me a tiny part of the thrill at those Games that I got at the Winter Games when our flag went up to the top of the hockey arena with all those thousands of people singing the national anthem, I hope we go.
One look at the cover photograph of the U.S. hockey players celebrating their gold-medal effort and I could almost feel the excitement, jubilation and thrill that overcame them. That golden moment will live with those inspiring young men forever. As a potential Summer Olympian, I fail to see how anyone has the right to deprive me of a chance for a similar reaction to a lifelong dream.
Pitt Swimming Team
President Carter's politically inspired decision to boycott the Moscow Olympics will destroy the motivation of thousands of young people and disillusion many more. Our country gains nothing, our athletes are the scapegoats for the political process, and individuals throughout the world are the losers. What will the U.S.S.R. have lost?
STEPHEN B. COHEN
Your editorial on the Olympic boycott (SCORECARD, March 3) really hit home. It amazes me how this country's public opinion can change so drastically. In a matter of days public sentiment has focused on Eric Heiden and the U.S. hockey team instead of those brave Afghan rebels who are fighting and dying for a country they call home.
I can sympathize with the athletes who have so earnestly trained for the 1980 Summer Games, and with their families. They do deserve better. But I find it hard to agree that the U.S. should send a team to Moscow. If we were to compete in the Games this summer, and present circumstances persisted, we would in effect be saluting military aggression. Communism and the good ol' U.S.S.R. Sure, many American athletes would win medals and, yes, all of us at home would savor those two weeks of watching the world's finest amateurs. But is that really what we want?
President Carter has stood firm in saying we will not send a team to Moscow, so, while we still have time to make a favorable impression on other countries, we Americans should unite behind him and send a strong and clear message to Moscow that we will not put up with its recent act of naked aggression. We may never get a chance to seize this peaceful opportunity again.
JOHN A. HELDT
OUR NATIONAL PASTIME
Your article on Marvin Miller (Whither Opening Day, 1980? March 3) helped to clarify a complex issue. However, it appears to me that both Marvin and Ranger Relief Pitcher Jim Kern are misinformed. While it is true that the owners are not baseball, neither are the players. As Twins owner Calvin Griffith points out, baseball is the fans. No fans, no money. No money, no salaries. No salaries, no players. No players, no owners.
Keeping this in mind, I would suggest some form of fan representation at player-management talks. I feel that at some point fans will grow tired of insane salaries, suitcase teams and suitcase players. What will happen then?
As for the threat of no pro baseball this year, if America can survive Watergate and Vietnam, it can surely survive a year without baseball. The real losers would be the players, the owners and Marvin Miller.
UP JUMP THE DEVILS
It was with anguish and astonishment that I read Curry Kirkpatrick's article on parity in college basketball (Why the Game Is on the Level, March 3), especially his implication that the Duke Blue Devils were not worthy of an invitation to the NCAA tournament. How could you leave for dead a team that, when playing up to its capabilities, is a thing of beauty—five individuals playing as one. something, the NBA hotshots would be well advised to duplicate? As you are now aware, the Blue Devils did play the type of ball they are capable of in winning the ACC tournament, earning a well-deserved bid to the NCAAs. To err is human, but to forgive on this matter is out of the question.
GARY J. LANG
For the "Mike Gminski-led Gflop of the Gcentury," Duke's ACC title should help Curry Kirkpatrick enjoy his first bite of postseason Gcrow.
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