I agree with Rick Telander that teams should not be criticized for
running up the score against weak opponents (POINT AFTER, Dec. 14).
When I was in the equivalent of junior high school in England in
1973, I had the honor of captaining our school's under-14 rugby team.
Our record was 0-12-2, with 12 points for and 580 points against. Our
average loss was 41-1, including defeats of 98-0 and 88-0.
Where was the honor in being captain? It was in our turning out as
a team every Saturday morning, even though we were fairly sure we
would lose and lose big. The worst week was when the opposing team
stopped trying to score early in the second half. That was insulting.
The true test for any sports team is not whether it loses by a
large margin but how it reacts to such defeats. I am still proud of
my teammates, who responded by trying harder every week. Anyone paid
what the average NFL player receives should stop whining and play
harder next time.