In your article, The Egg and the Net, you state the number of Americans who play tennis is estimated at more than 7 million, while golf can boast no more than 6 million. Even the most partisan tennis buffs will admit that the aggregate number of hours consumed, the number of casual and also of avid players and the total number of participants are greater in America in golf than in tennis.
DORING C. DAHL
Downers Grove, Ill.
?Statistics compiled by the nonpartisan Athletic Institute over the last six years, based on estimates by the U.S. Lawn Tennis Association and the National Golf Foundation, have shown tennis to be the leader in total number of players, both regular and casual.—ED.
I would like to add a little fuel to the 24-second-rule controversy and particularly to straighten out two of your readers, Ron Gelfand and Roger Kennedy (19TH HOLE, Feb. 18).
I do not understand Mr. Kennedy's statement that a stall is not a show of class. Most good teams know how to break up a stall. Illinois should have been booed for not knowing how to handle a strategic maneuver. Cincinnati is hated for the same reason that people root against the baseball Yankees. They are too good and win too many championships.
RALPH L. WITTE
La Habra, Calif.
To me, any team that can hold and stall the ball for five or more minutes in basketball is showing its best. A stall also wears the other team out and gives the stalling team a rest. I'm for the stall a hundred percent all the way.
Regarding Clemson Coach Frank Howard's stated hope that rules will be changed to allow the use of one-year sports scholarships (SCORECARD, Feb. 18), I hope to see no change. The maintaining of the four-year scholarship system puts the responsibility for choosing deserving and capable players in the lap of the recruiters, where it should be. If the coaches cannot foresee playing potential, they will continue to be embarrassed by having to keep players who cannot play and moan about the athletic scholarships they misused. If this won't help to straighten out the recruiting difficulties by keeping the spotlight on the college recruiter, I don't know what will, save abolishment of the entire system.
The only way that a lot of boys can get through college today is on an athletic scholarship, and Mr. Howard is actually saying: if you don't produce, then forget it. There has been much squabbling about athletes on scholarships actually being professionals, because they receive compensation for their talents. If Mr. Howard's plan were to be put into effect, then the squabbling would be over—there would be no doubt about their professional status.
I have known a few college coaches, and I'm happy to say that most of them show interest in their players from academic as well as from other points of view besides that of football.
LULLWATER RUNS DEEP
As his trainer and caretaker I am very much disappointed in your very brief article on Great Lullwater's win of the $40,000 Prix de France (FOR THE RECORD, Feb. 11). You stated that Great Lullwater had not done much of renown for years. I'll tell you why. He has never been a sound horse. As a matter of fact, after one race at Roosevelt Raceway during his 1962 campaign Great Lullwater went dead lame, and was supposed to be done for the season. But with a lot of hard work and a big heart, he got back to the races and even won a feature race at Yonkers just before the season ended. Last but not least, Great Lullwater proved how big a heart he has by setting a track record.
New York City
I find no mention in SPORTS ILLUSTRATED of the death on February 2 in Fayette, Iowa of John E. (Doc) Dorman, D.D.S., who was football coach at Upper Iowa University. Doc was an exponent of razzle-dazzle football long before the term became part of the language. He was an improviser and tactical genius who probably invented the trap play and may have been the first coach to use the shovel pass.