The Harvard track team combined wins in the 1000 and in the 35-pound weight throw with a third in the long jump to capture a totally unexpected third place in the NCAA indoor track and field championships this weekend at Detroit's Cobo Arena.
Harvard, which had only four athletes competing in the meet, finished with 15 points, 121/2 behind winner Kansas and 111/2 behind second-place Villanova. Harvard's performance this year bettered its previously best NCAA showing, which was in 1968.
Captain Keith Colburn sprinted to victory in the 1000-the meet's third-to-last event-Saturday night to pick up six of the Crimson's points and to clinch a third-place finish for Harvard. Junior Ed Nosal captured six more points for Harvard Friday afternoon in the weight throw, and senior Skip Hare added three to the Crimson total by placing third in the long jump Friday night.
Because of their performances, all three athletes earned All-American honors.
In the 1000, Colburn hung back in second place until only a lap remained and then bolted past Wisconsin's John Cordes to take the lead. He began to pull away from the field gradually and was still increasing his margin as he crossed the finish line in 2:09.7.
Nosal unleashed a throw of 63' 61/2 "to win the weight throw by more than three feet. Nosal's winning throw, his last, eclipsed his personal best previous to this meet by more than a foot and was almost two feet further than last year's winning NCAA throw by Haryard's Charlie Aiootian.
Hare leaped 24 feet, ten and three-quarter inches to miss winning the long jump by less than four inches Hare, who had not beitered 24'2" before the meet, set a new Harvard record with his jump.
Although Colburn won, his time was 1.8 seconds slower than the mark he posted in the Milrose games about a month ago Colburn' blamed his relatively slow time on "lousy" officiating. "With a lap to go, one official signaled that two laps remained, while another signaled that only one was left." Colburn said.