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Bobby Morrow, the Texas speed demon who won three Olympic gold medals and became the third SPORTS ILLUSTRATED Sportsman of the Year, heads our list for the season's greetings because his appearance in these pages spans the year. His picture appeared on the cover of our first issue for 1957, and his name turns up in this, the last one. He is still involved in exceptional and happy events: a few days before Christmas, Bobby Morrow became the father of twins, a boy and a girl (see "Mileposts," page 4)
To Bobby and his pretty wife Jo Ann; to all the readers who have been with us through the year; to those who have joined us along the way; and to Ron Floyd and Viki Jo Morrow (5 pounds 11 ounces and 5 pounds 4 ounces, respectively), who, we hope, will join us in due time, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED wishes a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
SPORTSMEN OF THE WEEK
No true sportsman makes a distinction between vocation and avocation. The spirit that once prompted the late John (Bet-a-Million) Gates to wager fortunes on such impromptu athletic events as the progress of a housefly across a windowpane lives on in all those who find the complexities of everyday life as stimulating as any challenge in the arenas of organized competition. For the millions who earn their daily bread in the heart of Manhattan Island, the most challenging, frustrating, uplifting and invigorating game in all the world is encompassed by the simple necessity of getting to and from their jobs.
This never-ending diurnal race against time is run according to a multitude of rules, supervised by an army of heartless and incorruptible referees and beset by hazards that would do credit to the imagination of the world's most diabolically ingenious steeplechase planner. Yet on each working day of the year, the sportsmen of New York City and its metropolitan environs thrill to the challenge, rejoicing as giants (the Biblical, not the ball-playing, variety, that is) to run their course. Their rewards, like those of all sportsmen, lie in the deep satisfaction of accomplishment under adversity, a goal sustained, a second sheared from the time between coffee in the breakfast nook at Westchester and the coffee break in Rockefeller Center or Madison Avenue.
Anyone who can claim more than a block or two between home and work is qualified for the race, but the real pros are those from the far horizons of Westchester, New Jersey, Long Island or Connecticut who each day must pit their native skills against an elaborate complex of railroads, highways, subways, ferries, bus lines and crowded sidewalks. Like racing sailors, they must plot their own courses through the maze as the hazards dictate. They must not only choose a bridge but the right bridge out of some eight, the right tunnel out of four, the right combination of subway, bus and railroad out of an infinite variety of combinations.
Storm, sleet, snow, rain, dark of night, labor troubles, highway construction and plain human cussedness—all these bid fair each day to halt the doughty commuter in the completion of his appointed rounds, but somehow each day the commuter gets there—and gets back again—reveling anew in the heady knowledge of his superior skill.
Last week, perhaps as a providential year-end reward for his months of sportsmanship, the New York commuter was given a special treat. To provide one really worthwhile run, the heavenly Race Committee tossed everything in the book at him including 1) a threatened bus strike, 2) a flooding rain, 3) a realized subway strike, 4) the worst snowfall of the winter, and 5) a surprise 15� freeze. Despite it all, sporting Manhattanites took just a touch over three days to learn the new course and cover it in a jog trot. And only one of them—as far as could be determined—transgressed the rules. He was Commuter Stephen P. Kennedy, who, stuck fast on the Tri-borough Bridge approach, took unfair advantage of his position as Commissioner of New York's Police Force by hailing a passing police launch on the river at nearby College Point and ordering it to take him to work.
THE SUCKER WAKES UP