Thank you very much for the fine article about The Coach, Grambling's Eddie Robinson (Here's To You, Mr. Robinson, Oct. 14). Rick Reilly's review of the many obstacles Robinson has faced and surmounted, along with his portrayal of Robinson's tremendous spirit and drive, was superb.
Park Forest, Ill.
As one of the few white players to have had the honor to play for and learn from one of the best football coaches, I say hats off to a man who stands for what America, college, football and life are all about. I nominate Coach Robinson for Sportsman of the Year.
The late Paul (Bear) Bryant will always be one of my favorite coaches. At one time I hated to think of anyone ever besting his achievements. But no longer. Bryant's record has been surpassed by a truly class act.
Robinson is a rare breed of man. His humility and devotion to the work ethic are enviable, his integrity shines through in a photograph and his intelligence is reflected in his football record. Americans worry about their children having poor sports role models. I offer an excellent one in Robinson.
BRADLEY P. HARRIS
WINNER OR LOSER?
Ron Fimrite has hit for the circuit with his superb and sensitive story on the Angels' Gene Mauch ("A Man Has To Care," Oct. 7). Fimrite is also a man who cares. The inside baseball stuff was fascinating, but it was the achingly evocative portrayal of Mauch—a manager who has yet to win a pennant—that I found so revelatory and so splendid.
GEORGE P. GUTEKUNST
San Rafael, Calif.
We love Mauch here in Southern California. He has done a great job with a team that even SI picked 24th. It wasn't Mauch's fault that the Angels fell from the pennant race by scoring only one run in 31 innings vs. the Royals and the Rangers earlier this month.
JOHN A. FITCH
Cherry Valley, Calif.
The 1977 Twins, rather than being an example of Mauch's genius, are a testament to his ineptitude. Armed with the league's two leading hitters ( Rod Carew, who hit a sensational .388, and Lyman Bostock), the league's top RBI man ( Larry Hisle), a 20-game winner to anchor the staff (Dave Goltz) and one of the best relievers in baseball ( Tom Johnson), the best Mauch could do was a distant fourth-place finish in his division.
BRADLEY A. SMITH
An article on Mauch that doesn't mention the sacrifice bunt is incomplete. The rules of baseball wisely provide for three outs per inning. Mauch consistently tries to get by with two, seemingly sacrificing an out every time his team places a leadoff batter on base. I don't think it's necessary to look any further for an explanation of his record of failure.
THE DOUGH BOYS & CO.
I really enjoyed your Hockey 1985-86 preview (Oct. 14). I especially loved your story on the Detroit Red Wings and the salaries their players receive (Go For The Dough, Boys). Why shouldn't hockey players have the same opportunities and benefits that athletes in other major sports have?
What Mike Hitch is doing may not pay off immediately, but in the long run it should. Also, Jack Falla is right—Detroit is the best hockey town in the U.S.!
MARY ANNE MCCASEY
Battle Creek, Mich.