"VAG SCORES WINNING CRIMSON TOUCHDOWN ON LINE PLUNGE." It would be blazoned at the top of every sports page in the country. There might even be a picture of Vag, his face horribly contorted in a do-or-die grimace pressing his hand firmly into a prostrate opponent's face. And then walking across the Yard, he would hear the whispers of the awed Freshmen, "There he goes--Stonewall Vag they call him." Of course being a hero was convenient, but best of all it would mean the removal of a cross he had been bearing--none too regularly--for the past spring and summer. It wasn't that Vag disliked the ideals behind the conditioning program--he always loved ideals, but he groaned soulfully at the memories which thronged his mind. Long afternoons on Soldiers field, bending his battered body into positions for which it was clearly unintended, the horrible snap of his tendons the first time his lantern-jawed wrestling opponent threw him, and the regimentation of it all.
No, Vag was clearly destined by a higher fate for the gridiron. Only six days a week of practice and they held it behind those tall fences where no one could tell whether you were working or not. And look what the experts had said about the team this year. Why, they were only children--Vag stroked his sparsely stubbled chin--they were green and inexperienced.
Vag turned up the collar of his coat, and watched the crowds milling their way across Anderson Bridge. And the wind was blowing dirty scraps of programs and torn tickets between his feet. Dreams are grand, he smiled wanly and thought of the game. All-Americans that Pre-Flight team has been, big fellows who danced up and down when they came out on the field. He remembered the tense voices about him in the stands, laughing too quickly as they predicted which part of the first quarter the third Pre-Flight touchdown would come. Only they didn't score any touchdowns in the first quarter or the second or the third. In fact, two burly sailors were assisted from the field. Vag knew he had no chance to make the team.
Vag turned from Boylston Street into Mt. Auburn Street. No, it wasn't case of losing confidence in yourself, because he knew that you look twice as large in all that shoulder-pad stuff. He wasn't exactly disappointed, he could always go out for crew, but what worried him was that if the team was going to be this good, he might have to drop in on the HAA and get a contribution book.