THE GIRLS OF WINTER
Congratulations on another great swimsuit edition (Feb. 11). They keep getting better. For the benefit of all the people who love this yearly feature, would you please reprint the covers of all of your swimsuit issues? I really enjoy seeing old covers, particularly your most recent collection of past Sportsmen and Sportswomen of the Year (19TH HOLE, Jan. 14).
•Here they are.—ED.
IN THE SHADE
An article about the obscurity of Memphis State basketball (Mighty Sweet Music In Memphis, Feb. 11) in the swimsuit issue? Do you ever want the Tigers to climb out of the shadows?
JOHN K. BRANDT
River Falls, Wis.
FLUTIE'D AND GRETZKY'D
I am certain that many people will lie awake at night pondering the answer to that most important question posed on the cover of your Feb. 25 issue: "Can this man [Doug Flutie] save the USFL?" If memory serves, the same question was raised when the USFL signed Herschel Walker, Steve Young and Mike Rozier. When will the USFL powers learn that one or two superstar players cannot even carry a team, much less an entire league? History does have a way of repeating itself.
DONALD L. JOHSTONO
March 11, 1985
Can Doug Flutie save the USFL? Would a piece of used bubble gum have saved the Titanic?
CHARLES M. COLLINS
No one can save the USFL. Not Doug Flutie, not Harry Usher, not Lee Iacocca, not the Pope, not even Mary Lou Retton. The USFL signed its own death warrant when it decided to move to the fall, in competition with the NFL and college football.
Upper Arlington. Ohio
MICHAEL A. WALLNER
Don't get me wrong. I think Doug Flutie is superb in his own way. But if I hear his name mentioned one more time, I think I'll move to Edmonton and get Gretzky'd to death instead.
North Dighton, Mass.
I'm writing in anticipation of letters to SI bemoaning another article about Wayne Gretzky (The Key Man Is Sharper, Feb. 18), saying that enough has been written about him already. I beg to differ. Every time I look at the NHL scoring statistics, I have to pinch myself to see if I'm dreaming when I read Gretzky's numbers. To say they're unbelievable is an understatement. Few realize what he's doing in terms of setting standards in hockey. I've always believed that a lot of today's athletes are overpaid, but when it comes to The Great One, he's priceless.
I must agree that what Bob Knight did was odd (In The Heat Of The Knight, Feb. 11). I will give him credit for seeing to it that his players are serious about their academics, but he went about this in the wrong way.
Though Knight himself has been under a lot of pressure, I think he has to realize how much pressure he has put on his athletes. He needs to let his players try to work things out themselves, so they can prove to everyone, including themselves, that they can be champions on the court and off it.
My initial reaction to the decisions made by Bob Knight was one of outrage. Then I got a grip on myself. How soon we forget that Knight made similar decisions before. During the 1975-76 season Knight benched All-America guard Quinn Buckner for two straight games. During the 1980-81 season both Isiah Thomas and Landon Turner rode the pine. It may be only coincidence, but Knight won his two NCAA championships those same seasons.
Knight wants his players to fulfill their own potential. He'll discipline any athlete, even if the player will miss a nationally televised game or one against a top-rated team. I am the first to admit Knight has his faults. However, this is one alumnus who still totally supports Knight.
One final comment concerning Mike Giomi. What is wrong with a successful coach upholding the priority of academics over basketball? Each player who decides to attend Indiana is fully aware of what is expected of him, both on and off the court, before making the decision.
Fort Wayne, Ind.
All the furor over Bob Knight's latest shenanigans has reached this Indiana alum in Fayetteville, Ark., and once again, I'm amazed at just how much the people of my home state can put up with.
In the years that Knight has been the Hoosier coach, I have cringed at some of his statements, most of his actions and all of his egotistical tirades. He is a superior coach, but as a human being he leaves lots to be desired.
In the 30 years since I attended Indiana, I have been proud of everything about that great university—proud of everything, that is, until Knight came along.
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.