The Yankee dream is not so farfetched (Dreamy Times for Mini-Bombers, June 22). Even if it fails to materialize this year, it shouldn't be long in coming true. The boys on the farm here in Syracuse are leading the International League, and Yankee brass must sleep well indeed with visions of Tony Solaita (1B, .322, with power), Frank Baker (SS, .288, good glove, great arm) and Steve Kline (P, eight wins, one loss, 2.37), among others, sweetening their dreams of a world championship.
JOHN E. MURPHY
I read the article The Freshman and the Great Guru (June 15) with more than passing interest. It was my frustrated pleasure, during the 1954-55 academic year, to serve as the sometime-assistant to University of Oregon Coach Bill Bowerman. I suspect the smart money will get many a chuckle over your account of the Bowerman recruiting philosophy and practice, especially those coaches and alums who have lost prospects and/or dual meets to Bowerman's teams. During the late spring of 1955 I sat in Bill's office while he talked with a high school senior from neighboring Washington—a hurdler who had won two medals the previous spring in the state meet and who was to win two more within a fortnight. When this young man indicated that his career interest was in forestry (an area in which Oregon has no major), the Guru mildly chided him for visiting the campus and began naming other institutions that did have forestry majors, including arch-rivals Oregon State, Washington and Penn State. Like all man-made gods, Bill Bowerman has a few chinks. There are areas of philosophy in which we disagree, but I would be delighted to have either of my sons run under his direction.
ROBERT H. McCOLLUM
Division of Recreation and Intercollegiate Athletics
University of Pennsylvania
Pat Putnam's story was long awaited by West Coast readers. Moreover, the cover picture was one of the best displayed by your magazine in months. It showed Prefontaine running, but more important it showed the tremendous scenery in Oregon. Congratulations on a fine article.
My thanks for presenting Monsanto's full-page ad for the no-sweat lawn (June 15). I am grateful that the same people who brought us no-dirt football and good-hop baseball have now apparently freed me from the weekend hassle with my lawn. I can spend even more time watching clean athletes play on that all-green background which looks so fine on TV.
But can you direct me to a manufacturer of plastic trees and shrubs? We mustn't forget the problem of raking leaves in the fall when all those tripleheaders are on the boob-tube. Perhaps, too, plastic branches would keep the birds away—no one wants to be bothered with bird-do on his all-green plastic lawn.
Eventually, of course, we can solve the whole environmental quality problem by making the entire earth nonbiodegradable—completely covered with plastic and concrete. One wonders, though, which of the synthetic putting surfaces will give Jack Nicklaus the most trouble.
I would like to answer your "Dropped Baton" item in SCORECARD (June 15). In April of this year I was chairman of a track and field meet sponsored by the Gulfport, Miss. Jaycees and held in Gulfport on the same day that the Jackson Daily News Relays were to have been held in Jackson. We had 17 teams from three states competing in our meet and these teams included approximately 65 black athletes. A large number of first-place awards were won by black athletes. The meet drew an estimated crowd of 750 people which is the largest crowd to ever watch a track and field meet in southern Mississippi.
After it was over we were informed by the coaches and by several of the spectators that it was the finest high school track meet they had ever attended, and no mention of race or color was ever brought forth by anyone participating in or connected with the meet. I relay this information to you to show that it is not the people of Mississippi as a whole who create the incidents you mentioned, but just a certain few who may be in power at the present time. I would furthermore like to invite you to attend the next Gulfport Jaycee Invitational Track Meet, which will be held in April 1971. I can assure you, you will see a preponderance of black athletes participating on an equal and welcome basis with white athletes.
CARROLL A. KEMP JR.