College Breaks With NCAA On Grid Television Policy
Copyright Harvard CRIMSON, May 15, 1953
In a surprise move, the College announced yesterday that it will not abide by the National Collegiate Athletic Association's football television policy for the 1953 season. Yale and Princeton are expected to make similar announcements within the next few days, as will most of the other Ivy League colleges.
Yesterday's direct slap at the NCAA is the first step toward the Ivy League's complete severance of connections with the NCAA. The severance is expected to take place within the next 12 months and is due to the deep dissatisfaction of the Ivy League college heads with "such a powerful organization of men who think along professional lines and arbitrarily bind colleges to any and all agreements," according to a high University official.
The Ivy League was ready to break with the NCAA last spring, but held up action for a final withdrawal until further study on the matter could be made, according to a reliable source. No further official action, however, has as yet been taken on this matter.
No Harvard TV Planned
The official College announcement was as follows: "Thomas D. Bolles, Director of Athletics, announced last night that Provost Paul H. Buck with the approval of the Harvard Corporation voted against the National Collegiate Association's football television policy for the 1953 season. Harvard intends not to be bound by any program restricting its right to decide independently when and to what extent it will televise athletic sports."
Bolles indicated yesterday that Harvard had no present intention of televising football games. It is known, however, that Pennsylvania is now negotiating for a lucrative television contract.
Harvard's decision to overthrow the restrictions also stemmed from the advice of legal counsel that the NCAA regulations were against anti-trust laws. The Justice Department has in the past declined to give the NCAA a clearance on its limited TV program, and is currently prosecuting the National Football League for a similar restrictions of TV broadcasts.
The presently used College television restrictions were formulated by a committee headed by Robert Hall, Yale's Athletic Director, who resigned two days ago.