19TH HOLE: THE READERS TAKE OVER

September 12, 1982

THE COWBOYS: LOVE 'EM OR HATE 'EM
Sir:
Your special issue, The First College & Pro Football Spectacular (Sept. 1), on the 1982 football season was excellent. I especially enjoyed the articles by William Oscar Johnson (There Are No Holes at the Top) and Paul Zimmerman (Dallas Can Have 'Em) on the best team pro football has had in the past 20 years, the Dallas Cowboys. By devoting not one but two stories to The Organization, you've further shown why Dallas is truly CBS's and America's team. Of course, I'm biased, being from the Dallas area, but I'm not alone. As SI indicated, there are more Cowboy fans in this country than there are fans of any other team.

Your articles were also accurate in depicting Cowboy fans as snobs. Why shouldn't we be? While the rest of the NFL teams fall over each other trying to catch up to Dallas, the Cowboys are consistently at the top. It's very clear that players and fans of other teams are very, very jealous.
JIM SCHROETER
Garland, Texas

Sir:
Hallelujah! Someone has finally exposed the Dallas Cowboys for what they are: arrogant, obnoxious, whining, excuse-making, star-spangled pinheads. Here in Cowboyland I'm going slightly deaf from all the "we're the best" shouting that Cowboy fans incessantly do. I can only find solace in the fact that Dallas will have to start the season off 0-1, with a loss to the team that will be this season's Super Bowl champ, the Pittsburgh Steelers.
JOHN ANDERSON
Austin, Texas

Sir:
Paul Zimmerman's article got under my skin. Dr. Z is the best sportswriter around, but he has one glaring fault: his inability to hide his hatred for our beloved Dallas Cowboys. Over the years he's given them countless digs. This article allowed him total freedom to express his feelings and to quote equally biased individuals.

The Cowboys please their fans worldwide like no other team in history. They may not always win the Super Bowl, but they'll always be in the upper echelon. Their record shows up everyone else's. And when they lose, they are no more whiners than anyone else. John Brodie's and Tom Brookshier's comments could just as easily be aimed at any other team in the league. Who likes to admit his club lost to a better team? It's easier to question a costly call, the effects of being without injured players and other such factors. That's natural. I'll swallow this article, and Zimmerman will swallow continued Cowboy success.
THE REV. MARK (LINK) WARDE
Plymouth, Mich.

THE COLLEGE RANKS
Sir:
Without a doubt your First College & Pro Football Spectacular was the best preseason magazine I've ever seen! Congratulations—and Go [No. 8 Michigan] Blue in '82.
KEVIN P. BENNETT
Kalamazoo, Mich.

Sir:
You're kidding! Alabama No. 11? The Crimson Tide hasn't finished out of the Top 10 since 1970. Its chances of going undefeated are a lot better than No. 1 Pitt's. 'Bama has an easier schedule, excellent coaching, a winning tradition, depth at every position and an abundance of returning lettermen.
BILL KLING JR.
Huntsville, Ala.

Sir:
Oklahoma not No. 1? An oversight. Not in the Top 5? Silly. Not in the Top 10? Ridiculous. Not in the Top 15? Incredible. Not in the Top 20? Cancel my subscription!
KEVIN D. DUNN
Towson, Md.

P.S. On second thought, don't cancel my subscription. I want to see my Sooners on your cover, as No. 1, after they beat Pitt in the Orange Bowl.

USFL vs. LACROSSE
Sir:
Your First College & Pro Football Spectacular was a masterpiece and easily the best of its kind. However, I object to Paul Zimmerman's comments on page 131 (The Four Horsemen Ride Again), wherein he writes: "Right now the USFL's March-through-July schedule looks a lot better than the usual run of garbage sports, but if the ratings aren't impressive, the TV people might go back to lacrosse and refrigerator racing."

Garbage sports? Refrigerator racing, certainly. But lacrosse? It's a game played by skilled, well-conditioned athletes, many of whom participate in football programs as well. Zimmerman considers Jim Brown one of football's alltime greats, but does he know that Brown was one of the best lacrosse players of his time at Syracuse?
JOHN DEMARTINI
Brooklyn

CLEVELAND'S COUSINEAU
Sir:
Your article on Tom Cousineau (Paving the Way for $$$, Aug. 30) was superb. I watched Tom play from his first to his last game at Ohio State and he never ceased to amaze me with his linebacking abilities, but that comes naturally when you play for the Buckeyes. There really is nothing like a Saturday afternoon in Columbus. Cleveland owner Art Modell need not worry. He'll undoubtedly get $3.5 million worth of action and more from this Ohio State product!
TIMOTHY A. IARUSSI
DeQuincy, La.

Sir:
I'm a Buckeye fan, and Tom Cousineau was the best linebacker I ever saw come out of college. But he alone cannot change things around for the Browns. Trading Lyle Alzado, Robert L. Jackson and Greg Pruitt for draft choices and future considerations was an awfully bad mistake. I won't be surprised to see Art Modell's gang in the division basement for the second straight year.
JEFF PHILLIPS
Columbus, Ohio

Sir:
Either I like football or I'm a glutton for punishment: I pull for the Virginia Cavaliers. However, don't you think that three consecutive cover stories on football players—Walter Payton, Franco Harris and Tom Cousineau—in the month of August is a bit much? Whatever happened to baseball?
RICK LAWSON
Charlottesville, Va.

AT THE ORGAN
Sir:
Joan Ackermann-Blount certainly pulled out all the stops in her noteworthy piece on the art of playing a ball park organ (Really Getting Organized, Aug. 30). However, she somehow overlooked one of Pittsburgh Pirate organist Vince Lascheid's greatest plays: "Tie Ayala Ribbon," heard during the 1979 World Series in honor of a home run by Baltimore Orioles Outfielder Benny Ayala.

Incidentally, Fenway Park souvenir stands were, at last report, still hawking Red Sox Organ Music, an album wherein Red Sox organist John Kiley, a low-key swinger whose touch recalls that of the sublime pianist Red Garland, jams with former Sox star and power-hitting drummer Rico Petrocelli.
JAMES ISAACS
WBUR-FM (Boston)
Brookline, Mass.

Letters should include the name, address and home telephone number of the writer and be addressed to The Editor, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Time & Life Building, Rockefeller Center, New York, N.Y. 10020.

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