Mr. Brundage further says of our campaign to obtain the Games, "Nothing less calculated to impress members of the IOC could very well have been devised." Our analysis, which was confirmed by other IOC members, shows that the Los Angeles 1976 Olympic Committee complied with each and every rule and regulation promulgated by the IOC and with all verbal and written recommendations from Mr. Brundage. Mr. Brundage may be well advised to reply as to whether this was true of all other bidders.
As to his charge that our committee practically ignored Bill Henry and the longer-functioning Los Angeles Committee for the Olympic Games, this is nonsense. Bill Henry and Jack Garland, an IOC member, were fellow architects of our bid until their untimely deaths, and Lee Combs, then president of their committee and active in ours, joined me in a visit with Avery in Amsterdam.
As for William Johnson's article (Defender of the Faith, July 24), I should like to set the remark regarding Jesse Owens in context. While we used Olympian athletes and coaches for discussions with members of international sports federations concerning the quality of our technical services, we could not and did not generally use them for negotiations with members of the IOC. These discussions concerned finance, housing, travel, social and cultural events and administration, and we did not feel that an Olympian, without expertise in these matters, was technically qualified to make such presentations.
Mr. Johnson's article was in the negative, and I believe that an article outlining positive cures for the site selection process would be in order. A portion of our interview was spent in discussing the establishment of site selection techniques which would be more equitable and less costly to all concerned, with a few fundamental guidelines to be imposed upon the IOC as well as upon the prospective bid cities.
JOHN B. KILROY
MR. VAN ALEN
Can James Van Alen (The Deuce with Love and Advantage, Aug. 28) really consider himself a sportsman? Whatever merit his VASSS tennis scoring system may have seems to be rather substantially overshadowed by his somewhat inane position on more pressing issues. Further, does a man of his position honestly believe that "if you don't risk in depth, you can never reach in height." Perhaps I am being presumptuous, but failing to rejuvenate a species of European robin does not seem to constitute much of a depth. If Mr. Van Alen realizes that there are more important things in this world than furthering the cause of Santa Claus and wasting enormous sums on his own pet projects, then it is certainly a well-concealed fact. SI's report that he has been trying to make this world a better place than he found it strikes me as hypocritical when it goes on to mention Mr. Van Alen's role in the For America program. Considering the huge weapons storehouse the U.S. possesses, I doubt that a substantial increase in this amount would be in the best interests of making this world a better place.
The editors of SI should be criticized for elevating a man of such narrow views to a position of honor. One need only turn the page and look at those Olympic athletes who sacrificed and toiled for their higher goal to see who the true sportsmen are. They, not James Van Alen, are risking a depth to reach the height. Ultimately, they are the type of people who leave this world a better place because of their example.
Your entertaining feature on James Van Alen encourages me to hope that he will prevail upon baseball to adopt the sudden-death victory procedure. Games that run into many extra innings get the fans home too late and impose hardships upon the players who must meet schedules the following day. If a tie-breaking run is not scored in the 10th inning, the victory should go to the team that has managed the greater number of hits in the extra frame.
F. PIERCE SHERRY
St. Petersburg, Fla.
I enjoyed reading your article on James Van Alen. His ideas on spicing up the game of baseball made me smile, because everyone is talking about livening up the game, but no one ever comes up with any practical suggestions. As for Van Alen's suggestions, I think that the shortstop should be left in the game; otherwise, there would be too many singles.
Concerning his ideas on reforming tennis, I'd rather have the game stay the way it is. I still like it the regular way.
New York City
My compliments to Ron Reid for his excellent story on the Redskin quarterbacks (When You're No. 2, You Diet, Aug. 21). As a Redskin fan, I must agree that Billy Kilmer carried the team farther last year than Coach George Allen or anyone else ever dreamed. Even so, in the hearts of the Washington fans, Sonny Jurgensen is still No. 1. He's gone through a lot to prepare for this season, and he just wants to prove that he can come back. Thanks again for a job well done!