Recently, I was looking for something in my junk closet and came across a copy of an old Sports Illustrated. The date was January 22, 1973. The price was 60 cents. Dolphins quarterback Bob Griese was on the cover and the headline over the masthead said "MIAMI ALL THE WAY." There's an offensive lineman blocking as Griese looks like he's about to throw a pass. I'm not sure who the lineman is until I dig out another gem – the NFL Action '72 Stamp book from Sunoco gas stations –- and figure it must be right tackle Norm Evans, who wore number 73.
The 36-year-old magazine is in good shape. As I flip through the pages, there's a full-page ad that offers eight 8-Track tapes or records for just 99 cents providing you join the RCA club. Just detach the card, fill out your selections and mail it. Some of the artist are Sonny & Cher, Seals & Crofts, Derek and the Dominos, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Henry Mancini and Doc Severinsen, and a duo named Mouth & MacNeil.
Hmm, I wonder what would happen if I actually mailed it. Nah, I'd rather fill out the card in the back that will send me 25 weeks of Sports Illustrated for $3.95.
There are some interesting news items in Scorecard. Among them is a piece on the American League's "radical decision" to adopt the DH, whether it makes sense financially for New Orleans to build a domed stadium and a Florida development corporation that is planning to sponsor a 10-event competition between 10 top professional athletes, an idea that may have spawned ABC's Superstars. There's also an excerpt from a speech by former Ohio State football coach Woody Hayes at a physical education convention in Pittsburgh.
"If our society goes down the drain, and there are big signs it might, then historians will report: 'Here is a nation founded on team play that went down because they forgot about it.' If you want to destroy a society, talk down the heroes."
Or punch out anybody you want.
One of the Faces in the Crowd on page 77 would go on to be a Michigan Man. Bill Frieder was the basketball coach at Northern High in Flint, Mich. Yes, the same Bill Frieder who was fired as Michigan basketball coach on the eve of the 1989 NCAA tournament for accepting a job at Arizona State. He was no Michigan man.
As for the cover story of Miami's victory over Washington in Super Bowl VII, the headline on page 17 says it all: 17-0-0.
To me, the significance of this magazine is that it was the first Super Bowl that I can remember watching. Back then my attention span was what you might expect from a 7-year-old kid, so I have no recollection of Garo's Gaffe or Larry Brown's helmet flying off his head. In fact, 17-0 doesn't even ring a bell.
However, I do recall being the only kid in a room filled with men in their 40s and 50s rooting for George Allen's Over The Hill Gang. It wasn't until years later that I realized why all those people wanted to see Washington win. They were the same age as most of the Redskins players.