An item on Eastern college basketball that appeared in this space two weeks ago has aroused its share of reader response. One asked how his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, could have been overlooked. Another pointed out "an egregious and totally unforgiveable error" -- that of writing that no Eastern Eight Conference member had ever reached the NCAA tournament's "Final Four."
As for the first letter. Yes, Penn has been a worthy Eastern team, an Eastern Regional finalist on several occasions, and a Final Four team in 1979, when Magic Johnson and Michigan State finally ended the Quakers' Cinderella season. Ivy League basketball indeed deserves mentioning, even in an item about the Big East and Eastern Eight conferences.
As regards the "unforgiveable error," I stand humbly corrected. West Virginia, an Eastern Eighter, most certainly did appear in the NCAA finals. Despite 28 points from Jerry West, the Mountaineers lost the 1959 championship game to a defense-minded California team, 71 -70.