A Wing and a Prayer
In your overrated and underrated issue (The Ratings Game, Aug. 27), Michael Farber wrote that in hockey, experience is overrated and speed is underrated. Then, in the NHL preview issue you picked the Red Wings to win the Stanley Cup. Detroit made many acquisitions over the summer (including Luc Robitaille, above), but the majority of those players lack speed and have a lot of experience. That's O.K., though. Since you picked them, they won't win anyway.
Chris Froiland, Greenfield, Ind.
Can someone explain why you ranked the Bruins No. 10 overall in the NHL (SCOUTING REPORTS, Oct. 8)? According to your rating system Boston does not rank in the top half of any of the five categories and is in the bottom third of the league in three of the five. Is this the new math?
Hector Suarez, Winnipeg
Why was a baseball player on the cover of your hockey preview issue? Does Barry Bonds have a great slap shot?
Anthony Turner, Fort Worth, Texas
Pride or Prejudice
Thank you Ralph Engelstad for building North Dakota's beautiful new hockey arena and for fighting to keep the traditional Indian-head logo (Face Off, Oct. 8). Certainly Ralph built the new arena to enhance his own legacy, but he and other North Dakota alumni know that hockey is the only sport in which the Fighting Sioux can compete at the Division I level and win. Most North Dakota alumni are proud of their national hockey championships and their school.
Bob Kaluza Jr., Anchorage
George Dohrmann quotes numerous people, such as professors of English and communications. He uses the phrases "many on and off the Grand Forks campus...contend that...the university sold its soul" and "according to a source close to the university administration." Did he talk to these people? Did he know that independent surveys showed overwhelming support among students, alumni and people in the community to keep the nickname and logo? Did he talk to members of the state board of higher education, state legislators or Native American leaders?
University of North Dakota
Grand Forks, N.Dak.
Thank you for your article about North Dakota and Engelstad. As a graduate of the university who has worked on campus for the last 25 years, I found your piece to be very carefully researched, and I was impressed by your thoroughness. Unfortunately, I've watched the whole ugly mess unfold before my eyes. I would like to believe that the average person has much more integrity than the North Dakota administration has shown, but sometimes I wonder. Racism is still very much alive in America. Thank you for shining a light on it here in Grand Forks.
Sheila Bichler, Grand Forks, N.Dak.
Leather seats? In a car, maybe, but in a sports arena? As a former North Dakota athlete, I am proud of my alma mater but embarrassed and upset by the truths told in your article. The university has bartered its integrity and allowed one person to dictate how it operates. That is unacceptable. I hope other universities learn from this and don't compromise their ethics by bowing to the Ralph Engelstads among their alumni.
David Hamlin, Sturgis, Mich.
Our Colleges, Our Flag
Let me get this straight: The NCAA is concerned about how student-athletes of different nationalities will feel if American flags are put on their uniforms (SCORECARD, Oct. 8)? Are they speaking about the ones on scholarships, getting a free ride and a superior education? The NCAA should be ashamed for even questioning this patriotic gesture.
Bill Kudlacik, Wood-Ridge, N.J.
The NCAA warning regarding the placement of the U.S. flag on players' uniforms is a further reminder of how far out of touch the NCAA is with mainstream society.
Michael K. Hegarty Jr.
Farmington Hills, Mich.
I'd love to see all other major league baseball, NBA, NFL and NHL fans treat their pro teams as Montreal Expos fans do (THE LIFE OF REILLY, Oct. 8). Perhaps then the overpaid, overappreciated, crybaby athletes—along with the greed-ridden owners—would realize where they stand in the grand scheme of things.
Dave Charles, Phoenix