BASKETBALL: YOU ARE THERE, YELLING
It was a great night in Lawrence, all right, and Jubilation on the Kaw (SI, Feb. 11) was a masterpiece. After reading it, we felt we had been there—yelling with the 17,000 that night at the University of Kansas Field House.
LUCILLE AND OLIVER VENEKLASEN
BASKETBALL: LITTLE GARY
Congratulations to Jeremiah Tax on his article Jubilation on the Kaw. His mention of Gary Thompson brought back memories of the 1951 Iowa State High School Basketball Tournament in Iowa City, when little Gary, playing for Roland, Iowa, almost upset powerful Davenport, Iowa for the championship.
Being a loyal University of Iowa graduate, I had hoped Gary would decide on the University of Iowa for his college. But after seeing how Gary has pulled Iowa State out of its basketball slump, I am glad that he decided on Iowa State, thus making another small school a big name.
BASKETBALL: SCOUTS TAKE NOTE
After reading your article about basketball scouting (Basketball's Underground Railroad, SI, Feb. 4), I realize you can't start too early. You might be interested in hearing about two Washington, D.C. prospects. They have led their school to seven wins out of eight games played. They are Fred Hetzel, 6 foot 5, and Sam McWilliams, 6 foot 1. They are both in the ninth grade! In one game Hetzel scored 35 points in the 20 minutes he played. Sam averages 16 points, and as captain he has led his team well on the defense also, bringing in rebounds from nowhere. The pair are great basketball players.
TRACK: HUMAN AND MECHANICAL ERROR
As the person who promoted use of the Cinetimer for the Madison Square Garden meets (The Answer to "Who Won?", SI, Feb. 11), I am the last to question its value or its need. However, it is and cannot be more than "an aid to the judges"; it cannot be a substitute for them. All too often, both with this device and with the Bulova Phototimer which preceded it for track meet use, no picture at all was available. And often when there was a picture, it was difficult (and sometimes impossible) to decipher.
Officials in all sports are fair game for the press-box or grandstand expert. Track and field judges are no exception. True, even as you and I, they may occasionally "blow" a close one, but how often do you see comment on the amazingly high percentage of times the officials' "naked eye" judging has been sustained by the camera on close finishes?
The reference in your article to the California timers, if it is intended as a slur upon their accuracy or probity, is entirely unwarranted. I have worked with the timers in both southern and northern California, and they stack up with the best in the world both as to accuracy and reliability. If, on rare occasion, there may be some human lapse, please remember that even SPORTS ILLUSTRATED can on rare occasion flub it, as in the very article in question, when it refers to "averaging" the times of watches. This can never be done. If two of the three watches have the same time, that is the official time, regardless what the third watch may read. If all three watches disagree, then the middle time (not an average of all three) is the official time.
Chairman, National A.A.U.
Track & Field Committee
•No slur at California timers was intended.—ED.
SPIKE WEBB: WRONG SPORT
Too much cannot be said of Spike Webb, this fine coach and builder of men and their characters (SI, Feb. 11, 18).
I was privileged to graduate with the class of 1930 from the United States Naval Academy, and took a brief course under Spike Webb.
Toward the end of the training period, Spike was giving the plebe (freshman) squad a lecture extolling our individual virtues and/or shortcomings. I will never forget when he got to me he paused, smiled and said, "Cook is the best catcher on the squad," and he was right too!
SPIKE WEBB: DISCONTINUED MODEL
Have known the one and only Spike for about 40 years—in my book America's greatest coach of amateur boxers. They just don't make 'em like Spike any more.
JAMES A. LEE
Secretary, U.S. Olympic Boxing Committee
BOXER: POINTS OF INTEREST
Your article about Ch. Barrage of Quality Hill (SI, Feb. 11) was enjoyable and highly stimulating to boxer lovers everywhere, yet it is my belief that the illustration in the article neglected to include rather pertinent qualifications which are vital in any judgment of the boxer standard.
Your illustration shows that the ears are erect. However, it failed to mention that the outer lobe should be free from cysts or wounds that often accompany ear shapings that are cut free rather than clamped and sutured. Barrage's rather tall ears represent the "American cut," which is a departure from the "European style," long the standard in this country.
In connection with the muzzle and skull proportions, the muzzle stop, a trait peculiar to good breeding, is important. Primarily it is the 90° angle formed by the top, flat portion of the muzzle which comes in contact with the skull in the hollow between the eyes. The top gives the muzzle a definite sense of cleavage from the skull.
WEIGHT LIFTING: UP AND OUT
It was about time somebody gave weight lifting a boost (A Big Lift for Fitness, SI, Feb. 11), as it boosts the torso, not to say the ego, out of all proportion. Just a little of it for the average guy, and what a difference in all sorts of chores! Even the homely operation of pushing yourself up and out of bed becomes transformed.
No amount of mountain climbing, swimming or tennis could do for me in 20 years what just three months of weight training finally did. I, too, used to think it was a pretty dumb kind of hobby, but it really becomes a challenge.
ROBERT G. WULFF
HOCKEY: HAPPY WINTERS
My sincere congratulations to Richard Meek and Whitney Tower on their excellent pictorial study of hockey at St. Paul's School (SI, Jan. 28). It was a timely and informative article that should bring well-deserved recognition to St. Paul's and the other hockey-playing schools of the East that are doing so much to promote that exciting sport.
As I read the story and studied the accompanying pictures I relived four very happy winters—the winters I spent playing hockey at St. Paul's.
BEN S. WARREN III
CARTOON: ATTN. MR. KOHNHORST
Just thought I would lend a helping hand to a fellow Californian. Seems as though Reader David Kohnhorst had trouble understanding the Chock full o' Nuts-Robinson cartoon in the Jan. 11 issue, for he had to write to you for an explanation, which, by the way, you put across very cleverly (19TH HOLE, Feb. 4).
I was just reading the Feb. 11 issue and decided that I wouldn't want Mr. Kohnhorst confused again. Hence explanation of Emmett Kelly-Elvis Presley cartoon.
Clown named Kelly, whose salary already has been returned to the best ball club in the league in the way of free publicity, arouses the jealousy of the St. Louis Woodpeckers' front office. Man with cigar can be only one person, who although he has a' synonymous name isn't the famous singer. He is demanding that his aides sign up Elvis (if you're alive, you've heard of him) Presley. He undoubtedly wants to put some new wiggle into his team. It has been said in the past that "the hot dog made St. Louis." Maybe the hound-dog-you will do even better.
Too bad the former owner isn't still around. Then you could have called the cartoon "A Saigh for a thigh."