Knight Moves

I wonder if Bob Knight realizes the winterlong death march he has
been spared--one combustible Big Ten arena after another would
have been more than any man could bear (Knight Fall, Sept. 18).
Indiana president Myles Brand performed a mercy killing, and
Knight's true friends and supporters should be grateful.

The arrogant Knight and the simpering wimp Brand are both bad for
Indiana. If I were an Indiana graduate, I'd rather have the
outspoken and abrasive Knight represent me than the mealymouthed,
wait-for-the-right-moment-when-I-can't-be-blamed Brand.

I find it ironic that a man whose philosophy has been "my way or
the highway" should feel victimized when his university finally
adopts the same standard.
GARY HERBEK, Sarasota, Fla.

It's a shame that 700-plus wins, three national championships, an
undefeated season, a stellar record of compliance with NCAA rules
and high player graduation rates meant so little to Brand. It's
more of a shame that your writer, Alexander Wolff, would overlook
these accomplishments in compiling an incomplete and unfair cover
R.B. PEMBER, Atlanta

Who wouldn't love to see Knight end up coaching Latrell Sprewell
in the NBA?
TEE DEEN, Kernersville, N.C.

Thanks, Myles! I had Sept. 10, 2000, in the office pool.

Olympic Snub

After reading your article on Kobe Bryant's, Shaquille O'Neal's
and Pete Sampras's attitude toward the Olympics, I was in shock
(SCORECARD, Sept. 18). It's one thing not to play if you're
injured, but it's quite another to show disrespect to the country
that has allowed you to make more money than an average person
would make in 10 lifetimes. The U.S. asks little of its citizens:
Pay your taxes and live by the nation's laws. For Kobe, Shaq or
Pete to, in effect, say to the public, "I have better things to
do with my time than play for the United States," is downright
CHRIS MARINO, Dedham, Mass.

Jack McCallum's criticism of Kobe Bryant's my-plate's-too-full
spurning of the [Olympic] basketball competition is ill-founded.
First, by virtue of the Lakers' playing all the way through the
postseason to the NBA championship, Kobe's summer vacation was
notably shorter than that of any member of the U.S. team. Second,
you write cover stories decrying athletes who show no
responsibility to home and family, but now you criticize a young
man who places spending his limited time with his fiancee and
preparing for his marriage over playing more ball with the guys.
MICHAEL G. HERMAN, Beverly Hills, Calif.

Tax Relief

In her congratulatory phone call from President Clinton, Venus
Williams complained to him of her high taxes (SCORECARD, Sept.
18). Clinton said, "We're working on it. I think there ought to
be special rules for athletes." Venus, if you believe that, then
also believe that I'm flying to the moon this evening in my
invisible spaceship.

Here's to Al

Thanks for Rick Reilly's wonderful article on basketball coaching
legend Al McGuire (THE LIFE OF REILLY, Sept. 18). In an era when
self-absorbed sports figures are the norm, it's refreshing to
read about a gentleman whose rise to the top of his profession
was filled with dignity, honor and a remarkable sense of humor.
ROB ROCHHOLZ, San Francisco

I'm a longtime Marquette fan, and Reilly's piece brought a lump
to my throat. As Reilly detailed so beautifully, Al has always
marched to his own drummer. He pulled his 1970 Warriors out of
the NCAA tournament (Marquette went on to win the NIT tournament)
simply because they weren't placed in their home Mideast
Regional, where they were expecting to receive a bid. Now that is
an original!
STEVE SCHMIDT, Menomonee Falls, Wis.


I can't buy you a drink, Al McGuire, but I'm sure going to drink
to you.
--BOB SWERCHECK, Slatington, Pa.

Reprehensible Behavior

The threats toward Kent Harvey and the burning in effigy of Myles
Brand (above) as a result of Bob Knight's firing created a
distressing feeling of nausea. Some of the students should be
escorted off the Indiana campus with their former coach.
DAVID HESSE, Eau Claire, Wis.