Track Team Coach Praises Squad As 'One of Best' in Recent Years
The Crimson track team is "one of the best, if not the best" squad in recent years, according to coach Bill McCurdy, but it still "has its work cut out for it" in intercollegiate competition. All the varsity's future opponents, notably Yale and Army, have improved tremendously, and a few freshman wonders may provide even tougher competition next year.
In its only dual meet so far, the Crimson trounced a rather unbalanced B.U. team, 72 1/3 to 36 2/3. Even this lopsided score gives little assurance for the future, for next year B.U. freshman John Thomas will be eligible to make varsity high jumpers and hurdlers miserable.
A somewhat smaller degree of success in the recent K. of C. meet gave the varsity a warning of what may be coming later in the season. Yale was outstanding in both the one-mile and two-mile relays, in the former event handing the Crimson its first K. of C. loss in six years.
Sophomore Bob Stack led off the mile relay for Yale in 49.7, which McCurdy called "a really outstanding indoor time." From that point on, the race was no longer in doubt, and Yale finished well ahead of the Crimson in 3:22.5. The Yale two-mile team, running without Tommy Carroll, possibly the best half-miler in the nation, and Ed Slowik, another gifted middle-distance man, still won its race in an excellent 7:45.5.
Nor is Yale the only formidable opponent on the varsity's schedule. Army, which faces the Crimson Feb. 21, is supposed to be even stronger and deeper than the Bulldogs, and Dartmouth, an easy foe last year, could give McCurdy's men a difficult time in the coming dual meet on Feb. 6, at Hanover. Freshman Tom Laris, who covered two miles in an unbelievable 9:08.9 to finish third in the K. of C. meet, gives a hint of the Big Green's growing strength.
The picture is not all gloom, however. The most pleasant surprise this year has been shotputter Henry Abbot, who broke the University record his last time out with a 51 ft., 6 in. heave. "If anyone had predicted that Abbot would break any records at this time last year, we'd have had his head examined," McCurdy commented.
"When you talk about the good hurdlers in this country, you've got to talk about Joel Landau," McCurdy continued. Landau has great competitive desire and terrific speed; if he ironed out his form, he could be the best.
Skip Pescosolido has been a strong asset in the dash, taking first in the B.U. meet, and Pat Liles has come from the broad jump pits to become anchor man on the mile relay combination. If weight thrower Jim Doty and miler Dyke Benjamin recover from damaging leg injuries, the varsity may prove it is not dead yet.
The first step in revitalization could come next Saturday at the Millrose Games in New York, when the mile relay squad will attempt to re-establish itself against top-flight competition.