SI Vault
February 12, 1996
Regarding your prediction that Florida would be "bruised and battered" but win a close game-well, you were half right.JAMES E. BACHMAN, Omaha
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February 12, 1996


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Regarding your prediction that Florida would be "bruised and battered" but win a close game-well, you were half right.

Hail to the Huskers
I was puzzled after reading Headed for a Fall? (Jan. 15). Wasn't the Fiesta Bowl the Super Bowl of college football? Didn't we see, in Nebraska quarterback Tommie Frazier, one of the best performances by one of college football's finest athletes? How could you make college politics a bigger story than the game?
DAVID CIMPL, Kansas City, Mo.

Nebraska did something that no Division I football team has done in nearly 40 years: win back-to-back consensus national championships. The Cornhuskers came tantalizingly close to doing what no team has ever done—win three in a row—and what SI writes about is that the Huskers recruit unworthy players, won't be able to repeat next year and are headed for a fall.

It looks as though Nebraska will be a contender again next season. In fact, the Huskers have a better chance of three-peating in 1996 than they seemed to have of repeating at this time last year. Quarterback Scott Frost, a transfer from Stanford, is an amazing athlete—just ask his former coach, Bill Walsh. I-back Ahman Green's freshman year was twice as productive as Lawrence Phillips's. And there are so many contributors on defense coming back that the Huskers' Fiesta Bowl dominance will look like just another day at the office next season.
CHAD PETERS, Milford, Neb.

If memory serves, you picked Florida to win the national championship on the basis of having one of the most sophisticated passing attacks ever. I believe credit is due to Nebraska coach Tom Osborne and his staff for creating a marvelous game plan, especially on the defensive side. Nebraska rarely recruits a top-10 class, yet this combination of walk-ons and in-state recruits keeps winning.
KENT P. NEWMARK, San Francisco

Super Snap
Patrick Murphy-Racey's contents page photograph (Jan. 15) of the Connecticut women's basketball bench warmers was magnificent. The photo shows what sports are all about in an educational environment. Fantastic!

Ron Weaver (a.k.a. Joel Ron McKelvey) plays seven seasons of college football, almost twice the usual four that are allowed by eligibility rules (The Great Impostor, Jan. 15). He goes under an assumed name for years—even opening a checking account under that name. He is accused of placing bets for his Longhorn teammates. When confronted with his deception, he lies, maintaining his innocence to coach John Mackovic.

So of course your take on the episode is that Weaver is a nice American boy who just wanted to play football. He is described as industrious, having purity of motive, inspiring trust and being a work-ethic monster. Who are you kidding? Is this what America has come to?

While Ron Weaver's actions should not be condoned from a moral standpoint, he should receive credit for pursuing his dream.
TONY BORELLI, Auburn, Ala.

Loving the Limelight
Your article on San Francisco 49ers free safety Merton Hanks (Struttin', Jan. 8) served to add legitimacy to the football-player-as-entertainer phenomenon that plagues pro sports. Hanks's chicken dance is the kind of behavior thought to be cool by the jerks to whom today's media pay homage. Those of us old enough to remember the understated elegance of a Jim Brown (above) or a Johnny Unitas (below) prefer that behavior.
CRAIG PETERSON, Moraga, Calif.