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LETTERS

Dec. 12, 2011
Dec. 12, 2011

Table of Contents
Dec. 12, 2011

LEADING OFF
GOLF PLUS
  • How big was Tiger's victory at the Chevron? Can Luke Donald hang on to No. 1? Who's most likely to become the top American? How do the major venues rate, and who will win the four championships?

  • Great majors, a new No. 1, LPGA dominance, an old school fight for the money title and the rediscovery of a vintage track too tough to die made 2011 a terrific year in golf

  • The game will long remember Europe's leading light, a pioneering woman and a television innovator

Inside: THE WEEK IN SPORTS
SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR / SPORTSWOMAN OF THE YEAR
SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR, 1981
SPORTSWOMAN OF THE YEAR, 1976
  • A couple of recent divorces have dusted up the Girl Next Door, but as always she will never sit back and accept defeat

SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR, 1982
  • A man can gather plenty of insight on the road from boy wonder to senior statesman for the sport he loves

PRO FOOTBALL
  • The Patriots' defense, built from spare parts, castoffs and converted receivers, ranks dead last in the NFL, and yet New England is once again cruising to the playoffs. The real test is yet to come

SPECIAL REPORT
COLLEGE FOOTBALL
HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL
BASEBALL
  • In 136 major league seasons, there's never been a more dizzyingly dramatic day than Sept. 28, 2011. The Red Sox and the Braves may disagree, but for everyone else it's a date that will live in ecstasy

PRO HOCKEY
  • With the club slumping and captain Alex Ovechkin seemingly checked out, the Capitals dumped their coach. Now one of the NHL's superstars isn't just struggling to rediscover his game, but he's also trying to shed an ugly label

  • The NHL's coaching carousel began to go 'round in earnest last week, with three jobs turning over in a four-day stretch. Besides the departure of Bruce Boudreau and the arrival of Dale Hunter in Washington, D.C., here's the lowdown on what went wrong and what to expect from here on in

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
WALTER IOOSS JR.
Departments

LETTERS

All good company men, whether in football or at a large corporation, are loyal to the organizations they work for and follow the directives of the executives above them. Joe Paterno is no different. As more facts emerge, I believe we will learn that the institutional failures at Penn State reach far above Paterno.

This is an article from the Dec. 12, 2011 issue

Beth Jesurun, Bryan, Texas

Penn State appears to have been more concerned about protecting its image (This Is Penn State, Nov. 21) than in doing what is right. I believe that has also been Paterno's pattern throughout his career. It seems to me that he only wanted to take responsibility for the actions of his players and coaches on the field and refused to address their potentially serious problems off it.

Steve Ferrier, Lawrence, Kans.

The failure to properly report the heinous acts that are alleged to have happened at Penn State is as shameful as the acts themselves. If we don't do whatever we can to protect our children, then what does that say about who we are?

Matt Travis, Baxter, Iowa

I think the media has used a 23-page indictment to create myriad conspiracy theories and destroy a great man like Paterno. No one can possibly say for sure how he would have responded if he were in Paterno's shoes. Paterno's admission that he wished he had done more is a sign of human decency, not an admission of any moral transgression.

Andrew Smukler

Princeton, N.J.

I agree with Jack McCallum's assertion that Paterno can't get his reputation back (A Legacy in Tatters, Nov. 21). But given everything that has happened, one has to ask: Was that reputation ever deserved in the first place? Is the Paterno we saw before this scandal the real one, or just an idealized front? I don't know the answer, but the fact that it seems appropriate to ask says a lot.

Robert Steckel, Amherst, Va.

I want to thank Tom Verducci for his input on the Penn State scandal (A Place Apart, Nov. 21). As an alum I believe it is difficult for outsiders to understand the loss that we, the PSU family, feel as a result of the administration's failures. Many on campus saw JoePa as a father figure. And while I think he made an error in judgment, I still believe that he is a man of high morals.

Pamela Teitelbaum

Middlesex, N.J.

Rhodes Less Traveled

Your article about Yale quarterback Patrick Witt's bypassing his final interview for a Rhodes Scholarship (SCORECARD, Nov. 21) in order to play against Harvard was inspiring. It also pointed out the shortsightedness of the scholarship committee. Witt should have been be applauded for his commitment, not penalized. He could have easily been a great spokesperson for the Rhodes.

Ernie Lane

Trinity, Fla.

No Ordinary Joe

Richard Hoffer's tribute to Smokin' Joe (1944--2011 Joe Frazier, Nov. 21) was a sad testament to our obsession with celebrities and their flashy personalities. Frazier was a great boxer and the one man who always pushed Muhammad Ali to the limit, yet Ali got all the glory. After looking at your small article on Frazier in the back of the magazine, I couldn't help but feel Frazier had been slighted once again.

John Kilbride, Houston

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FEEDBACK

What do you think of Tiger Woods's victory at the Chevron World Challenge?

Kelly Nishihama: Sweet! He is not even back at the top of his game and he still gets a win. I always believed he'd come back, unlike all of the haters.

Wade Denniston (@wdbowler): It was great seeing Tiger finally win again. I missed that famous fist pump of his. Here's hoping for many more victories in 2012.

Trey Hickman: I think his first win in over two years is nothing more than an anomaly, not the beginning of a climb back to the pinnacle. Let's see what happens next year.

John Spence (@LoudChiSportFan): Awesome. I like #Tiger when he wins because he makes the PGA relevant. When Tiger is good the rest of the field plays better.

Brendon Shay Sawyer: I stopped watching golf because he started slumping and the game got boring. Watching Tiger and Phil Mickelson go at it for the top spot was exciting. I hope we can see that rivalry start up again.

PHOTOHEINZ KLUETMEIER (COVER)PHOTOKOHJIRO KINNO (WOODS)