The Boston Post this morning will say that without Haley's knowledge a "Bob Haley Fund" was collected by a Harvard graduate to finance Haley through College. Haley accepted this because he believed it came to him as payment for a debt this same Harvard graduate owed to Haley's father.
Just as it was beginning its final week of preseason practice a dumbfounded Varsity football squad learned yesterday that Bob Haley, captain and star quarterback, has been declared ineligible by the Athletic Committee on a charge of receiving financial aid in return for his gridiron services.
Because of this Haley has resigned from the captaincy, leaving the football squad for the moment without a leader. The exact nature of the circumstances causing his removal was unknown last night and H. A. A. and University officials refused to give any details.
All that H. A. A. and University officers would say was that Haley has violated Section 2 of the Eligibility Rules, which means that "because of his ability as an athlete" he has accepted "money...or the equivalent of money" from "others than those on whom he is naurally dependent for financial support".
Haley himself said yesterday that "A rule has been technically violated unknown to me." Some took this statement to mean that the gift of financial support was made by indirect means and never actually reached Haley at all. Others took it to mean that Haley has unwittingly stepped across the Eligibility Rules' strict lines.
In either case the result is the same when faced by the curt statement of the Athletic Committee that it "has declared J. Robert Haley '36 ineligible for further intercollegiate competition." From this decision there can be no appeal unless the supposed violation should be proved false, a circumstance which seems extremely remote in view of the importance of the affair and the consideration officials have been giving it for days past.
Players and newspaper correspondents alike suspected something might be wrong when during the past week, Haley was repeatedly reported as "excused from practice" but no reason was given. The nature of the trouble came as a distinct shock to the squad when it was presented with the whole matter before going out to practice yesterday afternoon.
When questoned, Head Coach Dick Harlow expressed great regret. "Bob is a fine boy and has been a great captain", the football chief said. Eddie Casey, who was Haley's coach throughout his college career, likewise expressed great regret. "I am very sorry to hear of this," he said. "He will be a great loss to the team."
Haley's own statement said in full: "A rule has been technically violated unknown to me. As the Committee feels that this violation warrants a penalty, there is nothing else for me to do but to tender my resignation as Captain of the Harvard Football Team. This is indeed an extreme disappointment and severe blow to me. However, I entered Harvard University for the purpose of acquiring an education, and I fully intend to continue and to obtain my degree in June.
"To the Football Squad, Dick Harlow and his assistants I wish a successful season, and I will continue to do all in my power to help to attain it."
Athletic Committee Listed
The Athletic Committee, which voted the decision, is headed by William J. Bingham '16, Director of Athletics, as Chairman, and includes as Faculty members Dean Hanford, Chester N. Greenough '98, professor of English, and Arlie V. Bock, Harry K. Oliver Professor of Hygiene. Graduate members of the Committee are William Edmunds '00, George Whitney '07, and Charles C. Buell '23, himself a former captain and star quarterback of the Varsity.
The three undergraduates who complete the Committee are F. Stanton Deland, Jr. '36, manager of the football team, Raymond S. Clark '36, crew captain, and Richard Maguire '36, baseball captain.
Losing Haley means that the Varsity has lost not only its captain and best field general but also its best punter. Tommy Bilodeau is the only other back on the squad who has proved himself a reliable kicker, and to increase the Varsity's gloom Doc Thorndike decided yesterday that an injury received in Saturday's practice game will keep Bilodeau on the sidelines throughout the season opener with Springfield this Saturday.
The rule which Haley violated says that "No student shall represent his University in any athletic team or crew who receives, from others than those on whom he is naturally dependent for financial support, money, by gift or loan, or the equivalent of money, such as board and lodging, etc., unless the source and character of these gifts or payments to him shall be approved by the Committee on the ground that they have not accrued to him primarily because of his ability as an athlete."
The "Committee of the Chairmen" refers to a group of men representing both Harvard and Yale, between whom was made the basic agreement which governs such cases. However, the Eligibility Rules state in another place that "final responsibility for the eligibility of individual members of athletic teams shall rest with the University concerned." It was for this reason that Bingham's Committee alone made the decision yesterday.
Haley has been one of the most important men on the squad since the closing days of the 1933 season, when he was suddenly elevated to the quarterback post. Two years previous to that he had played on his Freshman team but had not been active during 1932.
Worcester Academy was his preparatory school, at which he was an all-round athlete, competing is three sports