A bread and butter play in Harvard's football offense is the inside reverse, with the wingback carrying on a handoff from the tailback. Lloyd Jordan elevens have frequently used the play with success.
Saturday, however, Dartmouth stopped the play, and for that matter the entire Crimson offense, in registering its surprise 14 to 9 triumph.
Not only was it an upset--the Indians were figured as two-touchdown underdogs--but it marked the first Green victory in three home starts against the varsity, and provided appropriate recognition of Dartmouth's 75th football anniversary.
It took the Big Green only one play to figure out the reverse play--when Crimson wingback John Simourian gained 11 yards late in the first period. Two plays later, he tried it again. This time, the Indians were ready. Using a fourman line with a linebacker moving into the line after the start of the play, they throw Simourian for a three-yard loss, and bottled up almost every future attempt to use the play.
A lapse in the Crimson defense contributed to the Green triumph--when Bill Beagle let go with a soft 25-yard pass early in the second period. Because it was soft, it would have been easy to stop; because it was soft, however, it was also easy for an uncovered receiver to catch, as Monte Pascoe proved in the Crimson end zone.
Beagle's vaunted passing ability was effective, to be sure, but not to the degree anticipated. He and his understudy, Mike Brown, threw only 11 passes, completing eight for 71 yards.
Beagle's greatest value came in calling plays in Bob Blackman's V-formation. The formation uses only two running backs in addition to the quarterback, with the fullback serving as a blocking back.
Beagle used both running backs--Jack Nicolette and Lou Rovero--effectively, particularly on draw plays, and Beagle himself scored the second Indian touchdown on a series of quarterback sneaks.
Dartmouth's own line, reputed to be as green as its jerseys, held its own surprisingly well.
The latest Ivy League standings show Princeton and Yale tied for first place with perfect 3-0 records. The two teams are followed by the Dartmouth eleven, which has won one of its two League games.
The Crimson is tied with Brown and Cornell with one win and two defeats for a .333 percentage. Columbia has one victory in four attempts, and Pennsylvania brings up the rear, 0-1.