Lay off Williams, TerpsWill bashing Gary Williams and...

Letters

June 23, 1996

Lay off Williams, Terps

Will bashing Gary Williams and University of Maryland basketball be a regular feature in the Sunday Sun? Up front, I would like to say that I am an employee of the university and close to the basketball program, but I am nevertheless outraged at this deliberate campaign to rip Maryland's recruiting and its graduation rates.

The best player in the state this year, junior Terrence Morris of Frederick, has already verbally committed to Maryland. Two of last year's top freshmen, Laron Profit and Obinna Ekezie, scored over 1,000 on their SATs and Maryland's 7-foot incoming freshman, Mike Mardesich, scored 1,300 and chose Maryland over Harvard and Vanderbilt (let's not forget Dunbar's Keith Booth chose Maryland over Duke and has helped lead the Terrapins to three straight NCAA appearances).

With regard to student-athlete graduation rates, Gary Williams is the basketball coach at Maryland, not a player's parent or guardian. Whether they are basketball players or engage in other sports, Maryland's student-athletes receive the finest opportunities to utilize the academic support staff and tutors to pursue a college degree. Student-athletes should thank their lucky stars that they are blessed with the academic and athletic gifts to receive a scholarship to the University of Maryland, which is worth $9,611 (in state) and $15,670 (out of state) annually in tuition, fees and room and board.

If a kid chooses to waste this wonderful chance for a college degree, the kid and his parents or guardians have only themselves to blame, not the kid's coach.

Marc Jaffe

Dayton

What about soccer?

To date, The Sun's coverage of professional soccer has been nearly non-existent. The paper managed to stoop to an all-time low on June 17 when more lines of text were provided to the "sport" of professional wrestling than to the U.S. Cup soccer tournament.

In addition to the minimal coverage of the U.S. Cup, The Sun failed to provide scores or write-ups on either the games played in the European Championship Tournament (Euro '96), or in Major League Soccer (MLS).

Next to the World Cup, the European Championship is the most important soccer event in the northern hemisphere. The MLS has a franchise within 50 miles of Baltimore (D.C. United), yet The Sun doesn't list the games in its schedule of events.

Simply put, a paper that opts to print more on a pro wrestling event (whether that event took place in Baltimore or not) than legitimate sporting events loses credibility with its readership. Soccer deserves better.

Shawn R. Hurst

Baltimore

A vote for Raven Park

Might as well get an early start on the naming of the new football stadium, a no-brainer: "Raven Park at Camden Yards" (RPACY).

Michael E. Weaver

Dover, Del.

Think of the fans

Pardon me, but I apparently have the misconception that sports stadiums are built for the fans. But it seems that they are actually built for the architects.

The requirements of real fans (not yuppies) for a sports stadium are such things as a convenient location, comfortable seats, good sight lines, convenient restrooms and concession facilities, etc; architectural design gets a low priority.

Once the fan is inside watching the contest, the design of the building pales in comparison.

Harry E. Bennett, Jr.

Baltimore

Unruly fan

Reading about the Yankees fans throwing debris at Albert Belle reminds me of an instance in the old stadium about 1947. Somebody (I won't call him a fan) threw a whiskey bottle at the first base umpire. Thank God it missed, but it bounced within a few feet of first baseman Eddie Robinson. The police had no trouble finding the culprit because all the fans were shouting for them and pointing him out. The police hauled him away.

Richard Elliott

Baltimore

Bowe is true champ

There is one true champion in the heavyweight division, Riddick Bowe. Your average sports fan will be quick to point out Mike Tyson's WBC title, but your average boxing fan has the intelligence to know that Tyson hasn't been the same fighter since his defeat to Buster Douglas.

Bowe has the size, weight, speed and strength to complement his intelligence, and the only reason he hasn't fought recently is that he is suing HBO in hopes of moving to Showtime to force a Bowe-Tyson matchup that will once and for all unify this division. There can only be one heavyweight champion who has proved that he is the cream of the crop -- Riddick Bowe.

Michael Tuminello

Baltimore

We welcome your letters. They should include your name, address and a daytime telephone number. We edit letters for length and clarity when necessary. Send them to:

Sports Department

The Baltimore Sun

501 N. Calvert St.

Baltimore, Md. 21278-0001

Or fax us your letter:

(410) 783-2518

Pub Date: 6/23/96

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