Just add Tony Mandarich (Tony the Terrible, Sept. 28) to the growing list of highly touted college football players who, once their ridiculous salary demands are met, end up riding the pine while collecting the money of an All-Pro. This list will keep getting longer until the NFL implements a rookie salary cap and a performance-based salary scale.
I would like to paint a little clearer picture of Mandarich. True, he has not come close to living up to expectations. He struggled his first two seasons in Green Bay, but as former Packer coach Lindy Infante recently said on a local television show, no one on the team worked harder. In addition, it would have been nice if at least one of the unnamed sources in your article had mentioned that Mandarich did have a pretty solid season in '91.
MARK VAN ZEELAND
Austin Murphy's Not Exactly Hog Heaven (Sept. 21) presents a disturbing reminder of the pressure placed on college football coaches to win. Jack Crowe's Arkansas team lost to The Citadel, and in the eyes of the university that was inexcusable. Crowe should never have been brought back to begin this season if the school believed he was an inadequate coach. His firing displayed no class. The Arkansas administration's win-at-all-costs philosophy makes it nothing but a loser.
Kudos to Alexander Wolff for his article on Title IX (The Slow Track, Sept. 28). He wrote about a serious subject in an entertaining fashion and prescribed specific cures. Bloated football programs are only one of the ills that have been visited on student-athletes by the professionalization of college athletics. Implementation of Wolff's recommendations would go a long way toward serving the broader educational needs of student-athletes.
JEFFREY C. BRIGGS
October 26, 1992
Your article contains the full spectrum of appropriate arguments for fairness to women—not only in sports but in society as well. However, the unconscious discrimination he cites will remain in athletics and other areas of society as long as SI and other representatives of the media contribute to that discrimination. Come February, millions of men will again be panting over your girlie issue, and you will have once more effectively compromised all the arguments offered by Wolff.
We really appreciate your articles on the devastation caused by Hurricane Andrew and the phoenixlike start of the football season for both the Miami Dolphins and Southridge High (Out of the Rubble, Sept. 28). Greater Miami Pop Warner football was hit equally hard, but the response of Miami-area Pop Warner volunteers has been heartening. We wanted practice to resume as quickly as possible after the hurricane because we felt it would provide a positive physical and psychological influence for the kids.
Word of the situation in Miami was passed around the country through the Pop Warner organization, and the results have been gratifying. Equipment donations have been made by a number of manufacturers. The New England region of Pop Warner shipped gear to outfit about 110 players. Other regions are donating funds directly to manufacturers for additional uniforms and equipment.
Greater Miami Pop Warner started its season a few weeks late, and three groups in the area are not fielding teams because their players and cheerleaders are temporarily living in other areas. But the spirit and drive of the Pop Warner volunteers in Miami, combined with the generosity of manufacturers and other Pop Warner groups, have ensured that most of our kids will enjoy sports this fall.
JON C. BUTLER
Pop Warner Little Scholars, Inc.
Nebraska Weighs In
Your feature on the best in college football (Nothing but the Best, Aug. 31) was incorrect in one respect: Nebraska, not Virginia, clearly has the best weight room in the land. It is 30,000 square feet compared with Virginia's 8,000 and has state-of-the-art equipment.
•But bigger isn't necessarily better, especially in light of Virginia's many amenities, which include antibacterial carpeting and solid oak lockers. Here's a look at both pump rooms.—ED.
Letters to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED should include the name, address and home telephone number of the writer and should be addressed to The Editor, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Time & Life Building, Rockefeller Center, New York, N.Y. 10020-1393.