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One Great Year
Terry McDonell/Managing Editor
December 30, 2002
How it was for us in 2002
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December 30, 2002

One Great Year

How it was for us in 2002

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SPORTS ILLUSTRATED received more than 36,000 letters last year. These letters could be challenging or funny or ironic, but they were always well-informed. Many were requests for specific information (one reader even asked for a Christmas gift suggestion), many more offered opinion (our Dec. 16 list of the Top 100 Sports Books of All Time has already prompted more than 100 letters), and some even thanked SI for changing their lives (a man told of how he broke the ice with his future wife by asking to borrow her copy of SI on an airplane). If you read these letters each week, you see a common subtext: Give us more—more of almost everything the magazine does. They remind me of a sign painted across the front of New York City's hard-core country music joint back in the 1970s and '80s: TOO MUCH AIN'T ENOUGH. That was the Lone Star Cafe, and a lot of SI writers used to drop in, which might've had something to do with the fact that a number of them were Texans and the place had a 40-foot-long plastic iguana on the roof. In any case the Lone Star was really a sports bar, even if Willie Nelson played there, and the hilarious Don Imus did stand-up. And like all such establishments, it was a high-spirited proving ground for the idea that a passion for sports holds America together, connecting people who can't agree on what's wrong with the Lakers this season, or if Ohio State can beat Miami, but who probably know they could run Major League Baseball better than Bud Selig. Of course there's more to it: Scores matter, we know that, but not as much as heart. That's why when you look at our covers this year—from Sarah Hughes to Ted Williams to Notre Dame to high school sports to Lance Armstrong—you'll remember why 2002 was a great sports year. And by the way, we answer most every letter, even if we don't have an iguana on the roof.

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