The first article of your series by Alabama Football Coach Bear Bryant, I'll Tell You About Football (Aug. 15 et seq.), is simply great. This is no ordinary sports story. It is one of the most candid and gripping pieces of Americana that I have ever read. If forthcoming pieces are comparable they should be published in book form for the benefit of future generations.
T. STUART RIDGELY
Congratulations. I came to know the Bear quite well when he was coaching at Texas A&M. He reminds me of the drill instructors at the Marine Corps boot camp at Parris Island during World War I, who had only a short time to prepare a bunch of green rookies for combat. They appeared to be mean, tough, nasty and ruthless. However, like Bear Bryant, they were just old softies at heart.
LLOYD J. GREGORY
One look at the fine men who once played under Bryant will dispel all criticism of his methods of "motivation."
One of my fondest memories is of leaving the stands and running across the gridiron at Texas U.'s Memorial Stadium on Thanksgiving Day 1956. The Texas Aggies had just beaten the Longhorns 34-21 to clinch the Southwest Conference championship (the only Aggie team ever to win in Memorial Stadium, before or since). As I passed the victorious Bear Bryant, who was walking alone across the field, my delirious cry of "Good game, Coach," was answered with a gracious, satisfied smile.
I want to thank SI and John Underwood for presenting the story of the world's greatest coach, Paul Bryant.
CHARLES W. JENKINS
Bossier City, La.
The Bear says, "I'll tell you about football." I'd like to know when he's going to start. So far he has written an autobiography and taught amateur psychology. I expected to read about football, not about his great way with the ladies or his inferiority complex.
Bear says he called Shug Jordan at Auburn at 7 one morning and Shug wasn't in the office. Could it be Shug was at the training table having breakfast with his boys or, perhaps, out on the field? Certainly, he could have been busy with football coaching instead of talking on the phone.
Believe me, Auburn does take its football seriously and its fine coach, too.
Mrs. G. O. NORDGREN JR.
After reading Dan Jenkins' article, A Poor Show by the New Rich (Aug. 15), I feel compelled to take exception to his comment that the annual College All-Star Game is not really necessary. Although some of the more wealthy All-Stars may feel more comfortable sitting on their fat wallets than they do wearing those jerseys with the stars on the shoulders, the College All-Star Game still kicks off the season in the minds of the nation's football lovers.
Over and above this, however, Jenkins seems to have forgotten the fact that the All-Star Game profits are turned over to The Chicago Tribune Charities organization. If for no other reason than that, the (usually) competitive and spirited summer classic started by the late Arch Ward 32 years ago is still worthwhile.
L. BRIAN BUTLER