Criticism of Yale's war policy particularly as that policy affects athletics, has led Captain W. S. Overton, U. S. A., Professor of Military Science at Yale to write a letter in its defence to the New York Sun.
Extracts from that letter follow:
"In your paper of Oct. 25, 1917, I saw a caustic criticism of Yale's athletic stand. One sentence states: "There never has been any real reason why Yale should not have gone into football at the start of the college year as most other universities have done.'
"Yale wanted football, but not if it conflicted with Government needs. Yale has taken the bigger view. She has held no false ideals of a premature peace. 'Duty, Honor, Country' is as thoroughly her motto as it is that of my own West Point.
"Professor R. N. Corwin, chairman of Yale's board of athletic control, asked me for all the football possible provided it did not interfere with military instruction. He put it squarely before me that Yale looked to me to recommend precisely such athletics as would assist the War Department which I represented.
"Until last week Yale's team has practised only about an hour or an hour and a few minutes, Tuesdays and Thursdays. They all drill Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Commencing last week, I excused the Freshmen from Wednesday drill, provided they drill under special instructors Saturday morning. The football team that played the University of Pennsylvania Saturday drilled that morning; they will drill every Saturday morning before playing. Can any university equal this?
"I expect Yale to lose at football but if the other universities would take up war work as seriously as Yale. I believe that thousands of American lives that will be lost in battle would be saved. The United States has men in plenty but lacks trained leaders.