I have been an avid reader of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED since its inception. I appreciate the fine coverage you accorded my father during his time with the Green Bay Packers and Washington Redskins.
VINCENT H. LOMBARDI
St. Louis Park, Minn.
BIGGEST OF THE BIG TEN
Your article on Big Ten basketball (Up, Up and Away in the Big Ten, Dec. 11) was good except for one thing. Must you constantly refer to what happened last Jan. 25 in the game between Ohio State and Minnesota? The only reason the incident is destined to continue to stay with the Gophers is that guys like your Curry Kirkpatrick refuse to let it die.
The Gophers are the best team in college basketball and they can prove it on the court. The Gopher fans are also the best in the world and they can prove it in Williams Arena. If you don't believe it, just come and see.
Bravo and hats off to Don DeLillo for his all-encompassing article about CJ (Total Loss Weekend, Nov. 27). He must have been looking into my living room for the past 15 years. However, he left out three elements vital to football viewing: a third TV set (the use of which is too complicated to explain here), a lucky green golf cap to be worn only when a field goal is needed late in the game to beat the points, and the secret for determining which team is going in which direction on which TV set.
Keep up the good work.
I truly hope that nongambling SI readers were able to appreciate CJ's total-loss weekend as much as the reading members of the gambling fraternity. Don DeLillo's underlying thesis, also employed frequently by Ernest Hemingway, is that without a negative, positive doesn't exist. One must feel loss at some time in order to savor victory at another.
The part about how CJ stopped smoking was hilarious. And DeLillo's style fed it to his eager audience in perfect mouthfuls. Thank you for an amusing reflection on the "action" man's weekend.
CJ lost only his money, I lost my freedom on a wager. Some years ago the underdog Vikings were in an almost impossible situation with little time left. Certain that I couldn't win, I told my girl Edna that if I won the bet, I would marry her. Not only did they win by the points, they won the whole game.
On my wedding day, my bookie wired me: "Congratulations—you picked two winners today, the Celtics and your wife." At least he mentioned the Celtics first.
I found the article very interesting. It shows the foolishness of betting and the lack of self-control. It might just help people with betting problems.