Union Committee Protests Conditions of '54 Football
Blames Spirit Lack on 'Demoralizing' Setup
The Freshman Union Committee, backed by the freshman football team, last night delivered an open letter to Athletic Director William J. Bingham '16, protesting the "unnecessarily trying and demoralizing conditions" under which the Yardling team has been forced to play.
Drawn up in a special session of the committee, the letter was passed unanimously by the group, and forwarded to Bingham.
The resolution states that "The fact that so many freshman football players drop football . . . during freshman year . . . would seem to indicate to us that the spirit is not all it should be . . ."
This lack of spirit, according to the report, comes from several things: 1) poor lighting on the field, 2) schedule conflicts with varsity games which prevent sizable attendance, 3) lack of a training table, 4) other matters such as an admission charge to games, playing on the practice field and performing away when the varsity is out of town, all of which tend to prevent people from watching freshman games. The report goes on to suggest remedies for each of these problems.
Yardlings will stage a Yale football rally sponsored by the Union Committee tomorrow night at 10 p.m. on the steps of University Hall. Freshman coach Henry Lamar will speak and freshman band members will play. The cheerleaders have also consented to lead the rally.
According to the committee the letter has the 100 percent backing of the Yardling football team. Richard J. Clasby '54, captain of the team, said last night, "There is no spirit at all, and there hasn't been for some time."
The transition that a football player makes from preparatory school sports to freshman athletics is very sharp, Clasby pointed out, and to ask him to undergo the rigors of the freshman team without any attention at all is too much.
Though other members of the team agreed with Clasby's evaluation of the spirit, freshman coach Henry Lamar said last night that he was surprised at the statement, "A lack of spirit has not been evident at all," he claimed. "As a matter of fact, I thought the spirit of the squad had been excellent."
Lamar would not comment on the substance of the report without having more time to consider it.
Bingham could not be reached for comment.