YESTERDAY a portion of the Mott Haven team went to the training table; from time to time additional men will be taken as they prove their right to the honor. This really marks the beginning of the training of the team, although as we all know the squads have been working faithfully since the Christmas vacation. The almost unparalleled success which Harvard has met with in track athletics during the last fourteen or fifteen years has a tendency to inspire over confidence, a misfortune the evil consequences of which we may some day bitterly realize. Just why we have had so much success, is perfectly plain. In the first place there is Mr. Lathrop who has for years been adding to his knowledge and skill in training and is thus by constant accumulation of experience better fitted each year to take up his work and carry it through successfully. Then there is the general interest manifested in this form of athletics which brings out every year an increasing number of candidates. These two causes have combined to produce the results so satisfactory to the University.
There has recently been a tendency, however for those who have been on the team for one or two or more years to enter some other form of athletics, sometimes thinking that there are others who can readily fill their places, and sometimes, we regret to say, without any regard to the loss they may bring upon the team. No one can deny any of these their right to choose their own line of conduct. Often they enter other branches of athletics when their presence is really needed, sometimes they do not. We wish to treat this in an entirely impersonal way, taking the cases which have come to our notice merely as showing the tendency to indifference toward the Mott Haven team. This is every now and then cropping out and it is not in accord with the spirit of the University. The time may come, when through a false and unlogical way of looking at things a few men may prove the indirect cause of defeat. This is not a mere possibility, but a decided probability. Should a misfortune of this kind come to us, we cannot but think those who were so largely responsible for it would feel sincere regret. Yet even if in spite of such setbacks, as the refusal of winning men to train, victory should finally come to us, the spirit which prompted the men in question to act is none the less to be deplored. There are many cases where men are justified in dropping their connection with the Mott Haven team; but on the other hand there are cases where the reasons advanced are less sound. It is against the spirit shown in these latter cases that we wish to protest.