It seems to me that Mr. Gilbert doesn't realize that fishing is a sport.
What a refreshing article! Bil Gilbert might even make a fisherman out of me.
As an avid reader of your magazine I could not help but notice the many letters concerning your article The Bear Bryant Hilton (Oct. 11). Although I'm prejudiced in favor of the University of Alabama, I am also close to it and know a few facts which should be made known to the public and the three letter writers from California (19TH HOLE, Oct. 25) in particular.
The University of Alabama indeed spent $1 million for its athletic dorm; however, that is only a small drop in the bucket compared to the tremendous amounts that Dr. Frank Rose, president of the University of Alabama, has spent in upgrading the academic standards and the physical facilities of the university, especially at the Medical Center in Birmingham.
And, although I cannot positively say that any of the Alabama football players can read, I do know that Pat Trammell and Gary Phillips, of the 1961 national champions, and Gaylon McCollough, who played on the 1964 national championship team, are doing quite well at the University of Alabama medical school, which is rated equal to or better than the majority of medical schools in the state of California.
Incidentally, that reference to "fattened lambs" implies that the Alabama team is going to be slaughtered each Saturday. Well, those "fattened lambs" have lost five games in the past four and a half seasons by a total margin of 12 points.
JOSEPH M. DONALD JR., M.D.
I was interested to note that three of the letters criticizing your spread on the Alabama athletic dormitory came from the state of California. It strikes me as entirely possible that these Golden State readers had difficulty recognizing the Alabama athletes as college students because a) none wore a beard, b) none wore a button saying "Support the Viet Cong" and c) none was burning a draft card.
It is true that great emphasis is placed on football at Alabama. Also at Notre Dame, Ohio State, Texas, Syracuse and numerous other fine universities. It is also true that the University of Alabama has made remarkable academic strides since Frank Rose became president a little over seven years ago. Perhaps this could not have been accomplished without corresponding successes on the gridiron. Money-appropriating state legislatures have also been known to look at scoreboards. This is not necessarily right, but it is a fact.
California has a magnificent educational system as well. But it is noteworthy that while Cal's football fortunes have declined, the Free Speech Movement has proliferated. Maybe Berkeley could use a swank athletic dorm to good advantage.
I might suggest that the three Californians who disparaged the Bear Bryant Hilton look first to their own state and examine the source of the money which is used to provide scholarships and subsidized tuition for the bearded leftists who marched in Berkeley protesting U.S. involvement in Vietnam. Given a choice between the two, there are some of us in the U.S. who would rather see money used to support athletics than to foster the type of "academic," "intellectual" trash that seems to populate the University of California.
ARTHUR R. STRONG