Thank you for the amusing and ironically respectful look at the Land of the Last—Philadelphia (Enough Cracks About Philly? Dec. 4). Being a lifelong fan of Philadelphia sports, I can identify with much of the article.
Let it be understood, however, that Philadelphians appreciate professional talent as much as or more than residents of any other American city. Rare items are always valued higher. The popularity of the Flyers, the rampant excitement over the 1964 Phillies, the explosive interest in the second-half 1971 Eagles (only to have them lose their way somewhere in the off-season) and the adoration of Steve Carlton are just a few examples of this appreciation.
While faithful Philadelphia rooters deserve infinite credit, perhaps Ruly Carpenter could trade the fair-weather fans for Curt Flood. Keep watching and waiting, Philly, we've got no place to go but up.
As one who has assiduously avoided the city of Philadelphia for most of his life, I enjoyed the article by Herman Weiskopf.
But please, let's give credit where credit is due. It was our own woebegone New England Patriots to whom Ed Marinaro was referring when he said, "I'd like to play for the Patriots [not Eagles] for a year and then go on to the pros."
May I propose a true Super Bowl between the Eagles and the Pats? The stakes could be, say, the Old North Church steeple vs. the Liberty Bell. Loser take all.
No group of somnambulant Philadelphians can take away what might have been our No. 1 draft pick.
GLENN A. BRIERE
•Marinaro used the line about local teams while speaking in several cities, including Philadelphia, Boston and Cleveland.—ED.
Although I recently moved to Florida, I am a longtime fan of Philadelphia sports. I immensely enjoyed Herman Weiskopf's article on the City of Brotherly Booing. I agree that our Phillies are hopeless, our Eagles are ridiculous and our 76ers deplorable, but one point I disagree on. Big Five basketball is definitely the best in the country. It is a poor season if at least three of the schools don't go to a postseason tournament.
The record speaks for itself. Penn has won the Ivy League title the last three years, and this year may win its fourth. Villanova has never missed a postseason tournament in the 11 seasons Jack Kraft has been there. Temple (the 1969 NIT winner), St. Joseph's and La Salle are consistently on top in the MAC. Say what you want about our other teams, but don't jive with the Big Five.
Fort Myers, Fla.