THE McCALLUM CASE
Ensign Napoleon McCallum may have been led to believe by the previous secretary of the Navy, John F. Lehman Jr., that he could be both an officer and a Los Angeles Raider (SCORECARD, Aug. 17), but the fact remains that he promised the Navy and his country that he would serve not less than five years on active duty in return for a free education. He also took an oath upon being commissioned that he would honor this obligation in good faith.
A promise is indeed a promise. If McCallum wanted his ticket punched to the pros, he should have selected another campus, preferably one at which his education would not have been funded by taxpayers.
McCallum (and David Robinson, too) should take note of the career of Roger Staubach. After winning the Heisman Trophy, Staubach fulfilled his commitment to the Navy and then became perhaps the best pro quarterback ever.
Being career Air Force (retired), I can understand the Navy's reluctance to turn McCallum loose to play pro football. But thanks to McCallum's athletic achievements the Navy has already received enough publicity to fill a barrelful of vacancies that McCallum and others like him might leave. Perhaps he could offer to pay back the Navy for his education. I think that would satisfy the Navy and the taxpayers. Holding on to this young man will, I believe, only have a negative effect on the Navy and its entire sports program.
HOWARD W. DIX
I have been impressed, week after week, by Peter Gammons's informative and entertaining INSIDE BASEBALL column. The Aug. 17 entry on this year's pitching problems was especially enlightening. Maybe now we can eliminate the tiresome talk of lively balls, corked bats and beanbrawls—and watch the game.
MICHAEL B. ROW
Upon reading Peter Gammons's item "Expansion Theories" (INSIDE BASEBALL, Aug. 24), I could not help but note and be saddened by the exclusion of Buffalo from the list of favorite cities. In 1983, Bob Rich Jr. and his father purchased the Double A baseball club in Buffalo, which had drawn only 77,077 people in 1982. Attendance skyrocketed to 200,531 in '83 and 223,443 in '84. In 1985, Rich purchased the Triple A Wichita franchise and moved it to Buffalo. Despite not qualifying for the American Association playoff's either season, the ball club drew 362,762 and 425,113 in '85 and '86, respectively. On the other hand, Denver, also in the American Association and with a much larger stadium, drew only 308,372 and 301,787 in those two seasons.
Buffalo is opening a brand-new baseball stadium next spring. The city also has been chosen as the site of the first-ever Triple A All-Star Game, scheduled for July 13, 1988.1 do not mean to knock Denver or any of the other expansion candidates, but Buffalo deserves a franchise too.
LEWIS P. GUSHUE
Rick Reilly is not only one of the best sportswriters but also one of the best writers, period (Unseen Hands on My Game, Aug. 17). He represented Scotland's Royal Dornoch beautifully, magically and, of course, hauntingly. We are fortunate that Reilly is much more skilled with the English language than he is with a golf club.
My visit to Royal Dornoch in 1969 might have been even more memorable had I had the benefit of Reilly's entertaining account. Looking back, I can appreciate Rick's concerns about the poltergeist population. I vividly recall the drive north to Dornoch. The bleak countryside and ominous clouds made me feel as though I were on another planet.
KARL D. HENRICHS
With the help of a few friends I discovered Royal Dornoch in May. Now you have to go and tell the whole wide world about this gem!
PROCTOR H. PAGE JR.