Prospectus, 1947

Back in 1935, Harvard had an auspicious football season during which it lost, in the order named, to Holy Cross, Dartmouth, Army, Princeton, and Yale. Facetious as this statement may seem, it actually encompasses considerable truth. In 1935, the name of Richard Cresson Harlow, curator of Oology and Coach, Harvard Athletic Association, appeared in the University catalogue for the first time. Inaugurating what was dubbed, topically at the time, a "football new deal" for the University, Harlow's first team emphatically improved upon its immediate predecessor: it played respectable football at all times, it reduced margins of defeat to a gentlemanly size, and it turned the local gridiron tide away from the 1934 abyss back toward its traditional prominence. By 1936, Harvard men were no longer apologizing for their football team.

After 1935, Harvard teams began the long climb up the ladder, Not always contenders for first-rate billing until the great team of 1941, the big football revues always gave Harlow credit for "well-drilled teams," capable of dark-horsing a way to the top-given breaks and a spark. In 1941, the powder barrel went off, and behind All-American Center Chub Peabody, the team made up in defense what it lacked in offense, catapulting the Crimson into the big time. Dreams of a football renaissance in Soldiers Field ended, however, with Pearl Harbor.

Like the 1936 squad, the 1947 team takes the field this afternoon a sophomore Harlow outfit. While the coach was in the Navy, Stadium performances approached the low established in the early thirties, and on his return he had to assemble a completely new gridiron machine. But, his first postwar team achieved much more in the way of a notable record than did his initial squad in 1935. It was the same old Harlow pattern-merely encouraged a bit thanks to some of the best material seen along the Charles in a decade-and if the trend continues through the current season, Levi Jackson and associates will find the Yale Bowl warmer than it ought to be in late November.