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Original Issue


Riled Up about Ricky

You wrote, Ricky Williams "grew up in San Diego." Not so. He may
be from there, but as the article makes clear, he hasn't grown
up at all.
St. Paul

Poor Ricky Williams (Lone Star, March 20). Should we fire all
the current players and bring in your old Longhorns teammates
and change the name of the team to the Austin Saints? We'll
build a stadium named after you, and we can even turn the front
office over to your college friends. Get real, shut up and play

Mike Ditka and Bill Kuharich make a bad deal to get Williams and
pay for it with their jobs. Williams freely signs a bad deal,
muddles through his first year, albeit with injuries, and his
response is to want a better deal. The patients are running the

We with the Phillies had a chance to get to know Ricky when he
played in our minor league system, and rest assured, he was not
the person John Ed Bradley described in his brutal story.
Despite having played in front of 70,000-plus football fans in
the fall, Ricky had no problem with motivation while playing
before the scant crowds in the lower minor leagues. He listened
to instruction and worked to improve. It's easy to make someone
look bad if you accentuate the negative without mentioning the
Manager, Media Relations
Philadelphia Phillies

Mad for Marino

I'm glad that Dan Marino decided not to play for any other team
(Letting Go, March 20). He may not have a Super Bowl ring, but
he is the champion of NFL quarterbacks.
KENT PIETRACUPA, Lower Sackville, Nova Scotia

It was pure madness that the NCAA basketball tournament was your
March 20 cover story rather than Marino's retirement. What does
a guy have to do to grace your cover?
WILLIAM A. TONY, Greenfield, Wis.

Juiced about Jason

Phil Taylor misses the point in his article on Kings point guard
Jason Williams (Out of Hand, March 20). Despite his errant
no-look passes and his poor three-point shooting average,
Williams is the best thing to happen to the NBA since Pistol
Pete Maravich. Forget the occasional turnover. When Jason has
the ball in his hands on a fast break, magical things can
happen--and usually do.
DON SMITH, Orlando

When I saw the headline of Taylor's story, I thought the piece
would be just another case of the media hyping a player, only to
then tear him down. But Taylor does an objective job of
portraying the enigma Williams is. That Williams arrived at the
right time for the NBA--but unfortunately not for himself--is
perhaps the most important point made in your story.
LISA SUHOVY, Strathmore, Calif.

Wild about Wooden

Rick Reilly's column on coach John Wooden was touching (The Life
of Reilly, March 20). Some things should never change. Thanks
for sharing one of those with us.
LARRY BLEDSOE, Oklahoma City

After reading about Jason Williams and Ricky Williams, it was
refreshing to finish with Reilly's story on Wooden. The next
time Reilly visits Wooden, he should bring those two with him.

Rising to Shaq's Defense

While you may have found it cute to criticize the Clippers in
your Scorecard (March 20) item about their charging Shaquille
O'Neal for extra tickets the night he scored 61 points, it is
unfortunate that your story made the Clippers look bad. Shaq
buys extra tickets for virtually every road game we play, as
well as for almost every Lakers home game. He understands that
NBA teams can't afford to give tickets away, and he appreciates
the assistance the Clippers provided in helping him purchase
seats for this sold-out game.
Director of Public Relations
Los Angeles Lakers
El Segundo, Calif.

Right the First Time

Congratulations to the folks who wrote the college basketball
preseason analyses last fall (Scouting Reports, Nov. 15). They
picked three of the four Final Four teams (North Carolina,
Michigan State, Florida). Too bad the folks who wrote the
tournament preview in March didn't listen to them (Let the
Madness Begin, March 20). They picked Temple, LSU and Stanford.
DAVE FITTON, East Orleans, Mass.


Bart's His Star
Peter King's farewell to Miami's Dan Marino contained an
important omission. He needs a sixth finger for his handful of
top quarterbacks: Bart Starr of the Packers won five NFL titles
(1961, '62, '65, '66 and '67).