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Regardless of his talent, Moss is a disaster waiting to happen,
and Marshall deserves better.


I am stunned at the profundity and poignancy of S.L. Price's
article about Randy Moss and Marshall football (Cut Off from the
Herd, Aug. 25). I was a student at Marshall in November 1970
when the plane crash that killed almost everyone on the football
team occurred, and I never thought anyone could encapsulate the
trauma of those days, the enduring, pervasive effects on the
school and the Huntington area, and the final redemption of the
1996 season when the best I-AA football team in history went
15-0. The article summarized it all and was a probing character
study of the enigmatic Randy Moss as well.

I am sure many Marshall fans were angered by Randy Moss's open
indifference to the crash. But we should not expect him to feign
loyalty to Marshall, nor should we be shocked by his lack of
interest in his classes or his frequent misbehavior. No, the
blame falls on Marshall for sending a clear message to Moss that
his athletic talent will shield him from the consequences of his
actions and that institutions of higher learning are willing to
compromise their integrity to enlist the services of an athlete.
BRIAN PLATT, Charleston, W.Va.

Randy Moss claims that Notre Dame "didn't take me, because they
see me as a thug." Given his criminal history, which includes
two counts of battery, a probation violation due to marijuana
use and domestic battery charges, I commend Notre Dame on its
JIM TANEY, Greensboro, N.C.


In a Sunday interview before playing the biggest round of golf
in his career (At Long Last, Love, Aug. 25), Davis Love III did
not talk about what it would mean to him to win a major
championship. Instead, he took a moment to send his condolences
to Corey Pavin, who was mourning the death of his father. Later
that day Love waited for his playing partner, Justin Leonard, so
that they could walk up to the 18th green together. He wanted to
be sure that Leonard was not overlooked for his runner-up
finish. Love knows what it is like to finish second, what it is
like to lose a father. His empathy for those who are suffering
similar fates reflects the class of this champion.
GRANT HAWKINS, College Station, Texas


How can you pick Penn State as the No. 1 football team (One to
112, Aug. 25) and leave Iowa in the middle at 31? Last season
the Hawkeyes beat the Nittany Lions 21-20 and finished even with
them in the Big Ten standings. This year Iowa has more returning
starters than does Penn State.
JOSHUA KEEN, Nevada, Iowa

Will someone please explain why Arizona State, which finished
11-1 last season, isn't ranked in the top 10? And you had the
nerve to rank the Arizona Wildcats (5-6 in 1996) 15th. Was that
a misprint?
VITO BOCCUZZIO, Meriden, Conn.

Ranking Michigan State ahead of Michigan is a joke. Michigan has
14 starters back. Michigan State is still trying to figure out
third-year coach Nick Saban's system. Plus, Ohio State will not
finish in the top 15. Buckeyes coach John Cooper is on his way
out. Get the plates ready. You'll be eating crow in November.
TONY COGGINS, Tawas City, Mich.


Thanks for disproving the thought that the car does all the work
by displaying the endurance, strategy and skill that a NASCAR
driver like Jeff Gordon must use in a race (Riding Shotgun with
Jeff Gordon, Aug. 18).
MICHAEL BUNDY, Tacoma, Wash.

COLOR PHOTO: JOHN BIEVER [Scott Norwood attempting last field goal in Super Bowl XXV]


I was surprised not to see Scott Norwood's name in your list of
athletes whose careers have been overshadowed by memorable
errors (SCORECARD, Aug. 25). Norwood kicked five field goals in
three playoff games in January 1991, three of them in one game,
tying the Buffalo Bills' postseason record. His regular-season
performance was anything but dismal. Yet he will always be
remembered for missing a field goal in the final seconds of
Super Bowl XXV, giving the Giants a 20-19 victory.