Books: Jock Lit 101

SPORTS IN AMERICA

by JAMES A.MICHENER

466 pages. Random House. $12.50.

THE JOY OF SPORTS

by MICHAEL NOVAK

357 pages. Basic Books. $10.95.

These days, it seems, sports are too important to be left to sportswriters. The bestselling novelist and the professor of philosophy under consideration here are only the latest literati to suit up and trot onto the playing field, drop-kicking references to Homer, Hemingway and John "Rabbit" Updike as they go.

And what does the sports shelf have to gain besides a higher class of allusion from this new breed of Jock Lit? Well,...

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