May 09, 2004

With 2nd MISL title, Blast does city proud

Although the Blast does not generate the media coverage that is accorded the Orioles and the Ravens, the team's loyal fans have been rewarded for the second straight year with an MISL championship.

Any Baltimorean who has not attended a Blast game is really missing something special. Yes, there is loud music and a few sightline problems, but the game is fast-paced, exciting and played with tremendous skill. Also, ticket prices and concessions are very reasonable.

More importantly, the Blast players have a genuine affection for the fans of this great city. Their interaction and camaraderie with the fans is an uncommon trend that has been sorely missing in this town since the Colts of the 1950s and 1960s.

So, if anyone is seeking value for his or her sports entertainment dollar, I would strongly suggest a visit to the 1st Mariner Arena next year to witness the local reigning champs.

Morton D. Marcus Baltimore

In profanity debate, don't forget Williams

Imagine my surprise when I read Laura Vecsey's May 4 column ["There's no place for profanity in College Park"]. Was she calling for the ouster of basketball coach Gary Williams? No!

In fact, Williams' courtside profanity-laced expletives were never mentioned in the article.

At issue is whether fans have a First Amendment right to wear profanity-laced T-shirts and chant vulgarities at opponents. I believe they do not, and I also agree with the decision by the assistant attorney general to allow the university to institute an anti-profanity policy.

However, if the university is going to drop the hammer on the students, it needs to take it one step further and include Williams in the crackdown. The periodic vulgar chants of the students pale in comparison to the expletives that emanate from his mouth during games.

Educating our students begins with the actions of our educators. Asking our students to curb their antisocial behavior while allowing the coach to vent his on a national stage smacks of the ultimate in hypocrisy.

Ms. Vecsey would have done well to inform us of this.

Jerry Beck Severn

Roberts should stay as O's second baseman

As is evident over the past week's games against the Chicago White Sox (and since the regular season began), Brian Roberts should be the Orioles' permanent second baseman.

I am aware that it's time for Jerry Hairston to come off the disabled list, but I hope he doesn't assume he will be inheriting his old job back right away.

Roberts is doing all the little things to win games - defense, timely hitting and stealing bases. He reminds me of how the game should be played - the Oriole Way!

Shawn Blackiston Perry Hall

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