Red Smith hammers out his column with the precision of a blacksmith to fit each situation and highlight in the field of sports. At times he writes like a professor of English, occasionally like an enthusiastic schoolboy telling the folks back home about winning or losing the big game. He covers the sports year from roses at the Kentucky Derby to the Rose Bowl, be it horse racing, football, baseball, basketball, boxing, the Olympics at Rome and even a dart game in London. He is a better writer than prophet -- he picked the Yankees to win and Johanssen to knock out Floyd once again. But right or wrong, he can report a sporting event and make you feel you were there. His column on John Lardner is a fine tribute and stirring. His coverage of the Olympics has color, movement, drama, pathos and humor. And his needling of the high and mighty makes entertaining reading.