You have made, in my opinion, the only conceivable choice for Sportsman of the Year: Bobby Orr (Dec. 21). I would certainly like to congratulate you on your excellent article on him. Jack Olsen did a truly commendable job of showing the other side of Orr, the off-the-ice side that very few people are aware of but which is also exemplified by your award. Bobby is truly a unique person as well as a unique athlete and you have done him justice. Nice work.
My thanks to Jack Olsen for that beautiful story. Before I read it I liked Bobby Orr, but it was a sort of hero worship. After reading the article I still like him; I also respect and admire him much more than I did before. In a world where too many players "cultivate the image of the big bad athlete," it is refreshing to have this insight into the life of a remarkable man.
Only one thing troubles me about your naming Bobby Orr 1970 Sportsman of the Year. Who else will you find to name for this honor in 1971, '72, '73, '74...?
FREDERIC C. MARSTON
Jack Olsen said that Bobby Orr "is the greatest player ever to don skates." Bah! Humbug!
Your choice for Sportsman of the Year was an excellent one. Not since Bill Russell and Bart Starr has one man dominated a sport as much as Bobby Orr. He has revolutionized hockey. He even has taught the older players new tricks and has every hockey-minded youngster patterning himself after him. Your article revealed how kind and generous a man Bobby Orr is, especially to children and adults less fortunate than he. The NHL has been gifted with a fine player and man.
After reading cover to cover the edition of Dec. 21, I felt you put in an extra measure of devotion, turning out one of the top issues of SI. The sentiment is in step with the season.
EDWARD G. EGAN
Old Greenwich, Conn.
NEW YEAR'S HOPES
Thank you for the article on Mountaineer Mitch Michaud (Upon a Peak in Delaware, Dec. 14). Dan Levin has done a superb job of capturing the joys and frustrations of all longtime mountain climbers and hikers. The therapeutic effects of the article are almost as refreshing as the sport itself.
STEPHEN R. Fox
Whatever his purpose, Mitch Michaud exhibits a life-style that America knew before she became entwined in electric cords and superhighways. Instead of climbing lofty peaks we shuffle through trash-laden streets. The only way out of this quagmire is to grab a sack and fill it with hopes of a cleaner tomorrow. Bravo! To Dan Levin and SI, and to Mitch Michaud. You really got down to earth.
LAWRENCE B. JOBSON
Silver Spring, Md.
NOTRE DAME 1970
Thanks to Harper's (Notre Dame: Our First Great Catholic University? May 1967) and NBC's First Tuesday (Dec. 1), millions of people have been informed of the changes at Notre Dame. Your article (The Greening of the Fighting Irish, Dec. 14), however, does more to show the role of the Notre Dame athletic tradition as an integral part of the change in the university than any other. I believe that this tradition is the keystone from which much of the greatness of the school is derived and the focal point of its continual quest for excellence.
RICHARD H. WOODS
Congratulations to Jerry Kirshenbaum on a fine article. Notre Dame has received a great deal of publicity about its football tradition, but sometimes the academic side of this excellent institution is overlooked. Mr. Kirshenbaum seems to have captured the true atmosphere that exists here on campus and discovered the "something special" that makes the spirit of Notre Dame unique.
Notre Dame, Ind.