NESCAC athletics should be the model for varsity sports at all postsecondary schools in this country.
BRUCE V. BAILEY, SEATTLE
Rick Telander's story on Buffalo Bill coach Marv Levy (No Joke, Oct. 17) shows that old-fashioned decency and civility can succeed in an era when rude and crude behavior has become the norm. It's hardly a surprise that after Thurman Thomas scores a touchdown, he just drops the football to the ground and doesn't go into an extended self-congratulatory spike and dance. Thanks for giving recognition to a coach who does not go out of his way to seek it.
JOE GUDELSKY, Roswell, Ga.
Finally, someone besides Chris Berman gives Marv Levy and the Bills the credit they deserve. Here's to SI for a fine story. And here's to Coach Levy, the Bills and their fans—may their resiliency and patience pay off this January.
DAVID WORLOCK, Arkadelphia, Ark.
The Bills can record the lower score in the next 10 Super Bowls and Marv Levy still won't be a loser. Character and dignity are in short supply in pro sports.
JOHN MARSHALL, Atlanta
Kudos for recognizing the true student-athletes who toil in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (Pure and Simple, Oct. 31). In a year that has seen greed curtail the seasons of two major pro sports and the besmirchment of several Division I programs, it is refreshing to know that some still play for the love of the game.
CRAIG MANNARINO, Chicago
The main reason that NESCAC schools maintain their athletic integrity is that they have no monetary incentive for victory. Division I schools receive increasing amounts of money depending on how far their basketball teams advance in the NCAA tournament. How can one expect Division I schools to play by the rules and see to it that academics are a higher priority than sports for their athletes when each tournament game could add hundreds of thousands of dollars to the school's revenues?
JAMIE HOROWITZ, Amherst, Mass.
You state that no NESCAC team has won an NCAA title. In fact, Williams won the first two NCAA Division III women's swimming crowns, in 1982 and '83.
DICK QUINN, Sports Information Director
Williams College, Williamstown, Mass.
Although winning isn't the main objective of NESCAC schools, some programs have turned out some exceptional athletes. For instance, Guy Hebert, Hamilton '89, is now the starting goalie for the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim.
MICHAEL J. HURLEY, Lake Placid, N. Y.
Your story didn't mention Jeff Wilner, Wesleyan '94, who signed a free-agent contract with the Green Bay Packers and is on their active roster. Wilner was an all-conference tight end and carried a double major in economics and government.
RICHARD BEAL, Assistant Football Coach
Wesleyan University, Middletown, Conn.
Twice in four weeks I was devastated by a Michigan loss on Saturday. By Thursday I'd almost put it out of my mind, only to see SI's cover in my mailbox, sending me spiraling downward again. I can't take it anymore. No more Michigan covers (Oct. 3 and Oct. 24). Go photograph some other team's defeats.
PETER L. HAN JR., Houston
By characterizing Michigan, after its loss to Penn State (The Lions Roar to the Fore, Oct. 24), as doomed to "just six more games and a hollow New Year's Day," you trivialize the commitment of thousands who play football with no thought of rankings or bowl games but simply for the love of the game.
SKIP NEVELL, Los Angeles
First the Jesuits: B.C. (Twice Is Doubly Nice, Oct. 17). Then the Mormons: BYU. Thank God SMU isn't on Notre Dame's schedule this year.
EDMUND J. PROBST, South Bend
On Oct. 22 both Northwestern and Columbia won on the road. When is the last time these two schools won away football games on the same day?
TIMOTHY O'NEILL, River Forest, Ill.
•Oct. 23,1971, when Northwestern beat Indiana 24-10 and Columbia defeated Rutgers 17-16.—ED.
Hebert (top) and Wilner went from small colleges to the big leagues.
[See caption above.]
Letters to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED should include the name, address and home telephone number of the writer and should be addressed to The Editor, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Time & Life Building, Rockefeller Center, New York, N.Y. 10020-1393.