When I read Rick Reilly's comments in Why Wait to Go Postal? (LIFE OF REILLY, Nov. 14) that "running fast is not the only thing these athletes are good at. Not by a million miles" and that "almost no black people were upset! It was all PC whites freaking out for blacks," I was reminded why I turn first to the back page of SI. Thank you, Rick, for stating a truth everyone seems afraid to talk about. Black athletes have made an impact on sports. It should be recognized and appreciated.
Kevin Bodnar, Carteret, N.J.
Reilly and Air Force football coach Fisher DeBerry have lost perspective. This has nothing to do with being PC. Athletics at our service academies exist to support the missions of those schools by providing physical and mental developmental opportunities for the cadets and midshipmen. DeBerry was just making a weak excuse for poor performance.
Richard J. Nicholson, Holyoke, Mass.
I find it ironic that Reilly's column about the stereotyping of black athletes was titled Why Wait to Go Postal?--talk about stereotyping! The U.S. Postal Service has consistently ranked high as one of the safest places in the country to work. As a letter carrier, and on behalf of more than a million workers who faithfully deliver SI each week, please let this stale clich� die.
Barry R. Wood, Uniontown, Pa.
An Eye for an Eye
I'm appalled that Todd Bertuzzi has returned to the ice while the man he attacked, Steve Moore, has not and may never (SCORECARD, Nov. 7). When considering the punishment for a player whose intentional action results in the injury of another, the NHL should link the duration of the suspension to the duration of the victim's recovery. Bertuzzi should not be allowed to skate until Moore returns to play. If Bertuzzi's vicious strike ended Moore's career, so should it end his.
Ted Seides, Riverside, Conn.
Alexander Wolff's Ground Breakers (Nov. 7), about the players who broke the color line in college football in the South, was riveting and heartbreaking reading. It's hard for us today to grasp just how much courage and sheer tenacity was demonstrated by these young men. I was particularly struck by the tale recounted by former Maryland football player Darryl Hill about the time his mother was prevented from entering the gates at Clemson University until school president R.C. Edwards showed up and invited her to watch the game as his guest in the President's Box. Edwards's leadership is a reason that Clemson can recall desegregation as a moment of institutional pride rather than shame. One lesson that we can take from Edwards's actions on that day in 1963 is that one individual can have an impact if he chooses to do what is right.
James F. Barker, Clemson, S.C.
President, Clemson University
Every football fan, and especially every SEC fan, should praise the heroic efforts of Wilbur Hackett, Darryl Hill, Jerry LeVias, Eddie McAshan, Nat Northington, Greg Page and Calvin Patterson. These young men's names and stories should be known and remembered by all.
Andrew McLelland, Auburn, Ala.
It was refreshing to read an acknowledgment of Kentucky's efforts in integrating SEC football. As a graduate student at UK in the fall of 1969, I witnessed Houston Hogg's and Wilbur Hackett's playing leading roles in defeating all-white preseason SEC favorite Ole Miss, led by Archie Manning, in a 10-9 nail-biting, home victory. Hogg had a key 16-yard run, and Hackett spearheaded the defense. It was the Wildcats' only conference win that season but certainly notable in more than one respect.
Art Wormuth, Whitesboro, N.Y