SI Vault
November 22, 1971
TALE OF ONE CITYSirs:My sincerest thanks for Richard W. Johnston's article about San Diego (A Playground Divided, Nov. 8). It was the first honest and fair description of this city's sports scene I have read. The San Diego Union and Evening Tribune (the only major newspapers in San Diego) failed as usual to give a completely objective report on the subject.
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November 22, 1971

19th Hole: The Readers Take Over

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Norm Bulaich of Baltimore is a fine running back. But by the time he achieves the class of AFC East leaders Larry Csonka, Jim Kiick or even Mercury Morris, John Unitas will be drawing Social Security checks. Miami is in first place in more ways than one!

As one of the country's chess buffs, I want to thank you profusely for the magnificent coverage you are giving Bobby Fischer's quest for the world title (Bobby Clears the Board for the Title, Nov. 8). In a world where the Russians have trumpeted their chess superiority as a sign of the supremacy of the Soviet system (as they do with any sport in which they are good), Bobby has rattled them right down to the grass roots of the South Slobbovia chess club. Let's hope he beats Boris Spassky and completes the puncturing of the myth that only Russians know how to play chess. Tell them Fischer is coming!

As an avid chess player I have followed Bobby Fischer's successes closely, and Robert Cantwell's story is the best I have read. I hope you place Bobby on the cover of your magazine when he wins the world championship this coming spring.
Vail, Colo.

My candidate for your Sportsman of the Year award is Bobby Fischer. Since more than 50% of all games between grand masters arc drawn, Fischer's feat of winning 20 consecutive games without a draw is incredible. Furthermore, Fischer is the first Westerner to earn the right to meet Boris Spassky for the championship of the world, and, in my opinion, he is better than even money to win it.
Princeton, N.J.

It seems strange that Pete Rozelle found nothing wrong with Ralph Wilson, an NFL owner, when he was suspected of dealing with shadowy figures (Mud Flies All Over the Track, Nov. 1), but he did insist that Joe Namath and Ernie Wheelwright, NFL players, sell their interests in bars for similar reasons, even though they were cleared of the charges.
South Orange, N.J.

We would like to correct the record stated by Robert H. Boyle regarding the National Football League investigation of Ralph Wilson. Boyle says: "Twice in early September agents of the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau asked the NFL to contact them about the case, but no one from Rozelle's office ever did...."

Sometime after Sept. 29, while attending a convention of the Society of Ex-FBI Agents in Atlanta, I had a brief and informal conversation with a representative of the TRPB. At that time he advised me that Mr. Wilson was under investigation by the TRPB and the New York State Racing Commission because of irregularities in the sale of racehorses. I asked this representative whether or not this investigation concerned the sale of the racehorse Jim French and he acknowledged that it did. I advised the TRPB representative that we were aware of this investigation from another source and that we did not believe that the National Football League desired to inject itself at this point into an investigation being conducted by an official body concerning a matter not related to professional football.

It was only following the announcement of the suspension of Mr. Wilson and the alleged basis for this suspension that we believed it was proper to conduct an investigation to determine whether Mr. Wilson's conduct was in fact detrimental to professional football. Our investigation proved that it was not.
Director of Security
The National Football League
New York City

?According to its chief investigator, Cliff Wickman, the TRPB twice sought the NFL's help in the investigation, but never received an official yes or no.—ED.

Peter Carry has done the basketball fans of America a favor by pointing out the virtues of the Doctor, Julius Erving (A Back Door into the Big Time, Nov. 1). In his two college varsity seasons, Erving certainly gave every indication of having the potential to become one of the premier cornermen in pro basketball. I for one can't understand the rap put on the boys who sign a pro contract before securing their college degrees. I believe that if their detractors were in the same position, they would find it difficult to turn down a salary as fantastic as the one reportedly paid to Nate Williams by the Cincinnati Royals. Regardless of how they perform in pro ball they can always go back to school, can't they?
Braintree, Mass.

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