Philly didn't know what a bargain they got in Jeff Garcia. But why could he come up big for them (Armed and Dangerous, Jan. 8) but not for the Browns? Who was responsible? One possible answer: the coordinator who trusted his gut and signed an old friend. But I say Garcia was because he not only trusted himself but also put his trust in the offensive unit.
Phil Baer, Westerville, Ohio
I agree with Nunyo Demasio's well-written piece that Marvin Harrison is one of the best receivers in NFL history (The Marvelous and Mysterious Marvin Harrison, Jan. 8). But the best? I believe that distinction belongs to Jerry Rice.
Jonathan Gault, Bedford, Mass.
How refreshing to read about Marvin Harrison. In a constantly in-your-face sport, the Colts' Harrison proves that you are measured by results and conduct, not end zone dances. See you in Canton, Mr. Harrison.
Chris DaRin, Dewitt, N.Y.
I enjoyed Michael Farber's article on Denis Savard and the Chicago Blackhawks (Chicago Hope, Jan. 8). Having grown up a Blackhawks fan, I think Denis wrongfully criticizes himself for being "too creative." His creativity produced a respectable string of playoff runs in the 1980s and now seems to be injecting some life into a franchise long overdue to hoist hockey's highest honor. We hung his jersey in the rafters because we knew he was something special. He has never disappointed.
Jeff Adam, Munster, Ind.
Everyone seems to be making a huge deal about Bobby Knight's reaching 880 wins (SCORECARD, Jan. 8), but he is not the alltime-winningest coach. Tennessee's Pat Summit has the record (at 932 as of Sunday, and counting).
Lauren Luster, Kingsport, Tenn.
Call to Arms
As a former Army officer I was pleasantly surprised by Maryland offensive guard Donnie Woods's plans to enroll in Officer Candidate School (SCORECARD, Jan. 8). I find it shocking, however, that Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen would say in response, "I don't know how much fun it is to have a bullet in you" and "The shame of it is—and I told this to Donnie—next year would probably be his best year of ever playing football." Are you kidding me? Is this what America told the baseball players who, like Ted Williams, in World War II missed some of their prime seasons to go to war?
Linton Phillips, Midland, Mich.
I'm glad all the members of our armed forces fought to keep us free so the Maryland coach can say such idiotic things. Shame on Friedgen.
Tim Beck, Washington Crossing, Pa.
After reading Stephen Cannella's essay on steroid user Shawne Merriman's heading to the Pro Bowl (SCORECARD, Jan. 8), I couldn't agree more with Jason Taylor. A four-game suspension for a million-dollar athlete amounts to an expensive vacation. Any player who gets suspended for violating the league's drug policies should be ineligible for the playoffs, in addition to any regular-season suspensions.
Curt Lofton, LaPorte, Ind.
The Pistol (Jan. 8) stirred up great memories of Pete Maravich. I had the good fortune in 1966 to be a walk-on at LSU—Pete had my scholarship! I remember clearly the night Pete and I combined for 67 against the Baton Rouge Hawks. (He got 66.) He was the most exciting athlete anyone had ever seen. How much time, work and dedication did it take to get that good? The answer was, of course, his entire life.
Bryan Flanagan, Plano, Texas
Immediately after reading The Pistol, I ran outside and began to dribble a basketball while riding my bike. After practicing for half an hour, I was able to dribble up and down my block flawlessly. Thanks, Pete, for teaching me one of your drills.
Adam Poliak, Hollywood, Fla.
Knowledge and achievement in life evolves and progresses from those who precede us. Pete Maravich is the product of Press Maravich, who was stationed in Hawaii during WWII and witnessed the play of Ah Chew Goo—known as the Mandarin Magician—a Chinese guy born in Hawaii who was revered locally for his unique, innovative basketball handling skills. Press had the foresight to realize that this was the future of the sport. Who would think that a guy from western Pennsylvania, while stationed in Hawaii, would fall in love with those exotic moves and techniques, which he later trained and drilled into his son, who became an American icon.
K.L. Ching, Santa Monica, Calif.
As of 2007 the top three college basketball season scoring titles in Division I belong to Pete Maravich. He played only three years of varsity ball or it would be four. Young gunners should remember that this was way before anyone got a third point for long shots. He averaged 44.2 points in 83 Division I games at LSU. He was simply the best scorer ever.
Mark Johnson, Church Hill, Tenn.
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