Secretariat is 10th on Peter Chew's list of the 10 greatest racehorses. Muhammad Ali is ninth on The Ring magazine's list of the 10 greatest heavyweight champions. Alice Marble puts Helen Wills Moody 10th on her list of the 10 greatest women tennis players—two rankings behind Alice Marble.
All right, that's enough potato chips for now. O.K., one more: Napoleon Bonaparte, who played solitaire incessantly while in exile, is second on a list of 15 fanatical cardplayers. Who is first? You can look it up.
The energy shortage, which doesn't seem likely to go away, may have deleterious effects on some sports, notably swimming. For example, in California the Public Utility Commission has suggested that people, schools and institutions be encouraged to use less natural gas for such "luxuries" as the heating of swimming pools (except those designed for therapeutic purposes). The recommendation has not been enforced, but the threat has upset swimming coaches.
"If the temperature in our pool has to go below 76�," says Coach Hank Vellekamp of the University of California at Irvine, "it will mean the end of our program." Even 76� is not warm enough for competitive swimmers trying to reach or maintain world-class standards. UCLA Coach Bob Haines says, "At 76� or 77�, swimmers in training get chilled after staying two or two and a half hours in the water."
If keeping swimming pools warm enough becomes a problem in Southern California, what in the world will they do in places like Indiana?
TALK ABOUT DOUBLE-TEAMING
The finest performance by an NBA player in this or any other season was that turned in by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar of the Los Angeles Lakers a month or so ago, just after a group of Hanafi Muslims, the sect to which Abdul-Jabbar belongs, had held more than 100 people hostage in Washington, D.C. Because of the possibility of reprisals against the basketball player, the FBI moved in to protect him, which led to this report in the Newark Star-Ledger the day after the Lakers beat the New York Nets 84-81: "Kareem, being guarded by an estimated 100 FBI agents, sank a pair of free throws with 41 seconds to play to put Los Angeles ahead for good."
BULLY FOR BULL
There's been enough written about venal ballplayers grabbing every penny they can get their hands on. Let's talk about Greg Luzinski, the Philadelphia Phillies' massive leftfielder. Luzinski signed one of those lucrative contracts this winter (a five-year, $1.5 million deal) but he has taken the novel step of plowing some of that loot back into the game. He arranged to buy 126 loge box seats in Section 575 of Veterans Stadium—Section 575 is in left field, Luzinski's position—for 36 playing dates this season. Because the seats go for $4.50 each, Luzinski's bill for the tickets was $20,412. He then announced that the seats would be given away to kids, through various youth groups, in the Philadelphia area.
The Phils' publicity department rallied round, naturally. They named the section "The Bull Ring" (Luzinski's nickname is The Bull) and said it would be enclosed by some sort of fence. The fence would not be just decoration, for the youngsters have to be kept under reasonable control. Groups applying for tickets have to promise that a minimum of 10 adult chaperons will accompany the kids.