Egg in Your Beer
Now wait just one cotton-pickin' minute: How much can one team take?
The football team--already hit by the losses of Terry Bartolet, Hobie Armstrong, and Roy Williams--now finds itself without the services of Hank Hatch, speedy first-string right halfback who is out for three to six weeks with mononucleosis.
Not to mention the loss of quarterback Chuck Kinney, who has been declared ineligible for academic reasons, plus a plethora of petty injuries and a sizable list of early-season dropouts. (Kinney has been playing behind Ted Halaby, Mike Bassett, and Bill Humenuk.)
Surely this isn't the first time a team has been stripped down to practically no hope, as was Cornell last year when its big guns in the backfield got injured. But when did a squad ever suffer such slings and arrows without even playing a single game?
Hatch, who was the reason for switching Tom Boone to left half, thrilled Crimson fans with a 93-yard touchdown return on the opening kickoff in the first inter-squad scrimmage Sept. 9. He showed a spark of brilliance that brought hope to the team. Then last week he sat out because of a strep throat. Monday, his slow recovery was attributed to mono. Updated reports said yesterday that he would probably not be ready until the Dartmouth game, the fifth contest.
Needless to say, the loss of Hatch leaves the backfield with less depth than over at halfback. Presently, three of the top six halfbacks are players who had no football experience last year. Sophomore speedster Jim Leath, second string left half behind Boone, and John Damis, third string, sat out last year--as did sophomore Dave Connor, third string right half behind Chuck Reed and Scott Harshbarger.
Senior center Tony Watters is still on the injured list with a sprained knee. Fullback Dave Ward has been troubled by an infected finger, but luckily, that won't hurt his toe. Sophomore Ed Legg has been switched to fullback behind starter Bill Grana, Ward, and Fred Bartl.
So it will be a package of nine seniors, one junior, and one sophomore starting for the Lehigh game Saturday, the opening of the Crimson's 88th football season.
And without a doubt, one of the only seasons in history with Harvard so deeply "one down" because of a persistent and hostile pre-season fate.