Sunday, December 20, 2009
ACROSTIC, Puzzle by Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon, edited by Will Shortz
Today’s acrostic utilizes a quotation from “Pigskin: The Early Years of Pro Football” by Robert W. Peterson, and is perhaps one of the more difficult solves of an acrostic in some time -- well, that comes from a fan of baseball who starves through the winter awaiting the renewal of spring.
In Pigskin, Robert W. Peterson presents a lively and informative overview of the early years of pro football--from the late 1880s to the beginning of the television era. He describes the colorful beginnings of the pro game and its outstanding teams and profiles some of the most famous players of the era. Peterson also takes us back to the roots of the pro game, showing how professionalism began when some stars for Yale, Harvard, and Princeton took money for their services to alma mater.
An elegy to a time when, for many players, the game was at least as important as the money it brought them, Pigskin takes readers up to the 1958 championship game when the Baltimore Colts beat the New York Giants in overtime. By that time, the great popularity of the game had moved from newspapers and radio to television, and pro football had finally arrived as a major sport. Oxford University Press
The quotation: IN FOOTBALLS EARLY YEARS VESTS WERE WORN TIGHT-FITTING WITH LEATHER STRAPS SEWN TO THE SHOULDERS LIKE SUITCASE HANDLES TO HELP A RUNNERS TEAMMATES PULL HIM THROUGH THE OPPONENTS LINE A TACTIC PERMITTED BY THE RULES
The author’s name and the title of the work: ROBERT W PETERSON PIGSKIN
The defined words: A. Crag called “Six Grandfathers” by the Lakota, RUSHMORE; B. Be too good for, put to shame, OUTMATCH; C. Clearly unversed in etiquette, BOORISH; D. Narrate creatively, EMBELLISH; E. Cutthroat … like the Red Sox in 1920?, RUTHLESS; E. Having a position of guardian or protector, TUTELARY; G. Wuthering, WINDSWEPT; H. University of Pittsburgh team, PANTHERS; L. Ornamental strap on a uniform, EPAULET; J. Party outside a stadium, TAILGATE; K. Very narrow margin of victory, EYELASH; L. Eponym of a sports journalism award (2 wds.), RED SMITH; M. Instrument used to measure splits, STOPWATCH; n. Passed with no touchdown, OVERFLEW; O. Irritants of the plant world, NETTLES; P. Rooter for one side, zealous supporter, PARTISAN; Q. Catch going the wrong way?, INTERCEPT; R. Fails, as a business (2 wds.), GOES UNDER; S. Like Peter, Paul and Mary?, SAINTLY; T. Vantage point for a nonpaying spectator, KNOTHOLE; U. Predestined, determined by fate (3 wds.), IN THE STARS; Y. Draw on Sunset Strip or Bourbon Street (2 wds.), NIGHT LIFE.
The original quotation: Canvas jacks or vests were worn over team jerseys or sweaters. The jackets, called “smocks,” allegedly for their inventor, L.P. Smock of Princeton, were tight-fitting in the hope that tacklers’ hands would slide off them. But in some cases, their value for that purpose was negated by leather straps that were sewn to the shoulders like suitcase handles. The straps were attached to help a runner’s teammates pull him through the opponents’ line, a tactic that was permitted by the rules.
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