Your story states, " Arrington played on the North Hills ninth-grade grade football team as an eighth-grader." I'm the wife of LaVar's eighth-grade football coach, Nelson Erb, and I remember the day my husband came home and dejectedly said, "The ninth grade took LaVar." For the week LaVar played for the eighth grade, we kidded Nelson that every page of his playbook should read, "Give LaVar the ball!" When Lavar is home, he never misses a chance to visit all his coaches, even his eighth-grade coach.
LISA M. ERB, Valencia, Pa.
G'Day, Football Fans
As an Australian living in the U.S., I enjoyed Gary Smith's comparison of the NFL and (real) football in Australia (Aussie Rules, Aug. 16). I have the same criticisms as my countrymen quoted in the article, and I wonder why NFL coaches don't incorporate more rugby-style passes or, as you would say, laterals. The lack of passing tends to make plays predictable.
JEREMY SMITH, Berkeley, Calif.
I lived in Australia for three years. I've seen rugby. Pul-leeze! The collisions in rugby are at half the speed of a free safety's closing in on a wide receiver.
RICK WEBER, Fort Myers, Fla.
L.A. Love Letters
Rick Reilly hit the nail on the head with his "Welcome to Los Angelose" article (THE LIFE OF REILLY, Aug. 16). L.A. is a town that has been cursed with some of the laziest, most overpaid athletes in the world. If Los Angeles teams would get rid of overpriced talent like Raul Mondesi and his .250 batting average and Shaquille O'Neal and his 50% foul shooting, maybe they might win. Until then, the city will be the town where so-called stars come to lose.
KEVIN JOHNSON, Fountain Valley, Calif.
Professional sports is so pitifully corrupt and morally contemptible that it isn't deserving of our time or our money. On the other hand, more then 90,000 people showed up to see a women's soccer game. I regularly attend high school football games where 5,000 people are in the stands, and I had to go through a ticket broker to secure a ticket to the state high school basketball championship. L.A. is still a sports town; it just isn't a pro sports town (unless you count UCLA).
VERNE MASON, Camarillo, Calif.
Get Him on the Team!
How can you have an all-century team without Bo Jackson as a running back? This is the same Bo Jackson that you named as one of your 20 Favorite Athletes of the Century.
BOB TAYLOR, Montgomery, Ala.