The largest rugby tournament in the world was held last weekend at the Mardi Gras, and 16 members of the Harvard rugby team rented and borrowed cars for the 30-hour drive to New Orleans only to discover there had been a mix-up in the payment of their entry fee.
Although they were not allowed to play in the 64-team meet, they participated in Mardi Gras festivities and played some rugby, too.
Emory College, whose team had finished third in the tournament last year but was unable to enter this year, agreed to play the Harvard ruggers on Saturday. Emory won the battle 6-3 despite crossing into Harvard territory only twice.
The Crimson squad was composed of members of the A, B and C teams who had never played together before and had not practiced since November. But the Harvard scrummers dominated Emory, consistently blowing them off the ball.
Lou Marczuk led the loose play for the Crimson making way for backs Ned Chiles and Captain Peter Hilton, who led the defense with their crunching tackles.
The lone points for Harvard came on a penalty kick by "Diamond" Jim Durham.
The referee for the game remarked that the Crimson would have finished in the top eight had they competed in the tournament.
On Sunday, opposition was provided by McDonald College from Montreal in what one player described as "the Hangover Bowl." The contest ended in a 0-0 stalemate.
The squad lost four players to injuries, one to a sprained ankle inflicted by a passing car, and two players lost their supplies of marijuana to the local police.