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Letters to the Editors

Fry 'race card' column on the mark

© St. Petersburg Times
published March 17, 2002

Just read Darrell Fry's column on Nolan Richardson and Charles Barkley and the race card (Don't play the race card if you can't cover the bet, March 9). Well done! He hit the nail on the head. I have been saying the same thing for the past two weeks since the Richardson incident. Actually, I have been saying it longer, but the Richardson thing just ticked me off even more. Don't get me wrong. I'm not naive to the fact that racism is a big problem in this country. But these two have been around long enough to know better. There are a lot better ways to voice their opinion on this issue than the way they did. Anyway, great job and a great read.
-- Jim Kerrigan, Bradenton

New QB can help Bucs

Why all the fuss about obtaining Rob Johnson? Here's a guy I believe can help the Bucs. Why? Because he is mobile and can throw on the run. On the other hand, Brad Johnson is not mobile and definitely cannot throw on the run. I don't care how improved the Bucs get, I see many losing games if Brad Johnson is still the quarterback.
-- Jimmie Carra, Port Richey

Analyzing a departure

Re: Will hard-earned good will leave town with McHale? March 8.

Please let me know if I am allowed to participate in the Times' pool to guess how many minutes, hours, days or weeks it will be before Bigfoot Naimoli jams his clodhoppers into his mouth. And about the reference to "Naimoli's bank account suggests he is a marvel in the business world," just hold on a minute. His last "great accomplishment" was to take a local area company into bankruptcy -- and then battle it over his compensation agreement. This is a "marvel in business"? I don't think so.
-- Dan Calabria, South Pasadena

• • •

To be sure, many people who got to know John McHale during his brief stay with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays will miss him. Most certainly, the Rays organization appreciates the many talents he brought to the ballclub. Contrary to your editorial (A big hole in the Rays' lineup, March 10), however, while his presence filled the "big hole," his departure certainly does not recreate the "big hole." I have to believe that the management of the Rays learned a great deal from McHale's vast experience. It has and will put his good advice to work. Let's not forget, no one wants this team to succeed more than the Rays themselves.

The Rays are an incredible community asset. Their positive economic impact cannot be overstated, not to mention the prestige and credibility that any professional sports franchise brings to a community. While it is easy to criticize some of the past decisions of any business organization, it is now time for all of us, including the Times, to support this team 100 percent. Our chamber board is fortunate enough to hear a monthly status report from the Rays. The incredible progress that this franchise is making is truly remarkable.

This is a critical time for the Rays. They are in the midst of their season-ticket drive, and are currently renegotiating many of their sponsorship commitments. We can criticize, point fingers and find fault. That's the easy thing to do. Let's do whatever we can to help our team succeed.
-- Terrence E. Brett chairman, board of governors St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce



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