PUBLIC DEFENDERS (CONT.)
Thank you very much for the illuminating article regarding Victor John Yannacone Jr. and the Environmental Defense Fund (All He Wants to Save Is the World, Feb. 3). Some of us are well aware of the battle by this stouthearted group against the use of a pesticide similar to DDT in Michigan. Thank God for such people. Without these brilliant, aggressive activists we would not be making much progress against pollution, including hard pesticides.
I also want to commend you very strongly for your article The Nukes Are in Hot Water (Jan. 20) by Robert H. Boyle. Many of us in Michigan are greatly worried about potential thermal pollution in the Great Lakes as, we understand, a number of nuclear power plants are in the planning stages. A year or so ago you had a very wonderful article on our ecology, and I recall that you suggested a Department of Natural Resources in our government (How to Stop the Pillage of America, Dec. 11, 1967).
Please keep up the good work. Your fine magazine is must reading for all conservationists, naturalists and ecologists, as well as sportsmen generally.
A. WARREN WOUGHTER
Vic Yannacone is a man who expresses views of conservation identical to mine in a powerful way. You may want to inform him that there is at least one other person who wouldn't mind cracking a few skulls for the sake of a healthy environment.
Just yesterday, after I had organized a small conservation group among several friends, one of the members and I went down to a local plant and collected samples of the effluence that was pouring directly into the river. One pipe was gushing hot water into the river at the rate of approximately 200 gallons per minute, while another outlet was running a fatty, dark gray pollutant that was almost wholly opaque in nature. This flowed at a rate of approximately 100 gallons per hour. We wouldn't mind a little advice on how to start "shoving back," either.
I certainly wish Mr. Yannacone success in his future battles to keep America a fit place to live in. Also, I was greatly delighted, to say the least, when I read your article Let There Be Steam in the same issue. That somebody is actually developing a steam car with the idea of fighting air pollution gives me no small amount of pleasure. It seems possible that someday all Americans will be thankful, with every breath of clean air they take, that a man by the name of Bill Lear was taken from the brink of death.
Contrary to Vic Yannacone's advice I am writing one last "letter to the editor" to commend SPORTS ILLUSTRATED for being the first to print in a popular magazine that we have a right, possibly Constitutional, to breathe clean air and receive full benefit of our natural heritage.
More articles like this will awaken the American sportsmen and their contacts to the "effluent of the affluent" and to their rights to a clean America for themselves and their progeny.
MICHAEL E. VOSSEN
Hearty congratulations on the Gilbert Rogin and Robert Boyle articles. You are thereby spearheading a fight against further pollution, which is long overdue. They are both dandy articles and should prove most helpful to all conservationists, who often seem to be waging a one-sided battle.
W. DOUGLAS BURDEN
I would like to congratulate you on the great job Joe Jares has done on the University of Santa Clara (A Simply Dandy Sibling Rivalry, Feb. 10). I am sure that many of the other students at the university share this same opinion.
Mr. Jares not only presented an excellent defense of our fine team against Ronald Green's comment in the Charlotte News but he presented all SPORTS ILLUSTRATED readers with an interesting and unbiased commentary on what makes our quintet rank third nationally. His article should be added to the many other SPORTS ILLUSTRATED greats.
The SCU students are anxiously awaiting the NCAA West Regionals in Los Angeles. Many are optimistic about the big game with UCLA. As Jares said, the Jets beat the Colts, so it might be said that the Broncos beat the Bruins.
STEVEN A. LAPHAM
Santa Clara, Calif.
Thanks for the recognition, but your coverage leads those unfamiliar with California to believe that Santa Clara is no more than a rural hamlet. You point out the unknown towns of Los Altos, Los Gatos and Milpitas but fail to mention that Santa Clara is rightfully recognized as a city and part of a vast megalopolis known as the San Francisco Bay Area.
Coach Garibaldi's friendliness with the gas station attendant epitomizes the smalltown atmosphere. How about the 379 bars and nightclubs within the limits of the San Jose-Santa Clara twin cities? Day life, night life, student life here in Santa Clara are all superb. This place is happiness in a big way.
San Jose, Calif.
I feel compelled to comment on a statement from your article that "Santa Clara stepped way down in class to swat such mosquitoes as UC Davis...." This year the Cal Aggies have easily beaten St. Mary's, which happens to be in the middle of Santa Clara's league, the WCAC. We are also well on the way to our third straight championship in a league that includes San Francisco State, the only team to lead Santa Clara at halftime this season. I just wanted to point this out so that when the Aggies win the NCAA "Small Mosquito" Division this year, you won't be too surprised.
Thank you for your excellent article on the Lamar Tech Cardinals (Lamar May Be Little, But It Sure Isn't Minor, Feb. 3). The small colleges, like Lamar, get very little publicity, and SPORTS ILLUSTRATED is the only magazine that brings attention to them.
I'm sure that if everyone could have seen the Lamar Tech Cardinals play the Houston Cougars they would realize why Lamar deserves recognition. Thank you for putting Beaumont on the map.
Bridge City, Texas
ONE FOOT ON THE GROUND
Your article on High Jumper Dick Fosbury (Being Backward Gets Results, Feb. 10) brought to mind a subject that is a favorite of a guy I used to work with. He contended the high-jump record really belonged to a Gymnast Dick Browning, who tumbled over a bar at some unbelievable height a few years ago.
Apparently track purists felt there was something illegal about Browning's style. As a matter of fact, Browning's feat escaped my attention completely. But my friend claims it happened and points to a notation in the Guinness Book of World Records to support his claim. My question is: Just what are the restrictions on high-jumping style?
•AAU rules state that the high jumper must take off from one foot. Dickie Browning, who somersaulted backward over a bar 7'6" high in 1954, used a two-foot takeoff. The Guinness Book of World Records cites Browning as "the greatest tumbler of all time" and lists, as part of his high tumbling gymnastic routine, a backward handspring, backward somersault with half twist and double backward somersault.—ED.
CROWNS AND HELMETS
Does your Mr. Mulvoy realize he is putting his neck in the same noose as your writer did last year by saying that Boston will end Montreal's reign and form the next dynasty in hockey (Bobby Orr & the Animals, Feb. 3)? There are only two teams in hockey that can win the Stanley Cup, and they are both from Canada. American teams win the cup about as often as Montreal changes coaches—once in the last 13 years.
The Canadian teams don't have players who have long thick sideburns or wear bell-bottom pants. Their players hardly ever win scoring championships or fill up the All-Star team. In fact, Mr. Mulvoy might not recognize some of their names. But, funny thing, they always have the Stanley Cup.
So, Mr. Mulvoy should not become confused. If he wants to write about a collection of characters, then he just did. But, if he wants to pick a winning team, he must take his choice: Montreal or Toronto.
While I enjoyed Mark Mulvoy's article on the Bruins, there was one statement he made that should not be passed over without comment. According to Mr. Mulvoy, Bruin fans do not tolerate "timid players" and "particularly dislike players who wear helmets." Presumably, then, if a player wears a helmet he is especially timid. What's that make a player who wears shoulder pads? Why should the young players coming along be given the idea there is something timid about wearing a helmet?
I've been a Bruin fan for years but I'm no admirer of Boston fans or their standards. If last year's fatality had been an Orr or an Esposito, instead of Bill Masterton, perhaps the attitude in Boston would be different.
Most players admit helmets should be worn but say they can't get used to them. Yet they get used to wearing other protective equipment: shin guards, elbow pads, shoulder pads and the like. Why not a helmet?
If a player doesn't want to wear a helmet, that's his business, but let's not glorify his stupidity by confusing it with bravery.
C. H. MOULTON
Your Jan. 20 SCORECARD item entitled "Hogwash" hit very close to home for us. Our son, a student athlete at a western university on a football scholarship, was dropped during final exams of the fall quarter because he "didn't grow" to the coach's expectations. He was one of a number dropped from scholarship without being given a chance to compete.
As individuals we can do only so much alone. But after reading your sympathetic article, we thought maybe the support of your magazine would help. At present, we have contacted the NCAA requesting an investigation of this matter. So far the university has failed to inform us of the termination, not to mention a legitimate reason for its action.
We not only seek to aid our son's cause but hope to prevent further abuse of all sincere athletes, especially boys who have proven to be good students, athletes and citizens and not tall clowns just getting by.
MR. and MRS. L. T. MADIGAN
Daly City, Calif.
Garry Valk's LETTER FROM THE PUBLISHER in the Jan. 27 issue commenting on Frank Deford's football story, The Year of the Great Fan Draft, was a timely one. I had just begun to gather some material for a possible story on this subject, and the tentative title is Let's Kill the Color. The television networks could save a good deal of money by just letting us fans watch the game and seeing to it that TV Guide or the daily papers carried a numbered roster, as a good many of them do.
I have a different halftime procedure from Frank Deford's: I turn off all the sound and, after noting the time carefully, get up and take a walk. This not only eliminates the annoyance of the announcer and the color men, but it also saves me from having to listen to those blaring commercials and the halftime shows and interviews. As for the game itself, all I need is an occasional look at the clock; I can count the downs. I've been doing it for 50 years, even before there were any TV announcers or P.A. systems.
FRANK C. McMANUS