Word Ways


Mike Keith


A traditional football (soccer ball) is a combination of 20 pentagons and 12 hexagons arranged in the familiar pattern shown here. Suppose a letter of the alphabet is placed on each white hexagon. Can this be done such that the five hexagons that form a ring around each of the twelve black pentagons spell a word when read clockwise? The answer is yes, and finding such labelling makes a nice puzzle - especially if solution by hand, rather than computer, is required.