Around the Water Cooler: Title Race Proves Elusive for Harvard

Published by Robert S Samuels on April 27, 2011 at 10:11PM

As the school year comes to a close, Ivy League sports are wrapping up as well. But for Harvard, the spring doesn’t look quite as cheery. Baseball’s out of the league title hunt, while both the men’s and women’s golf teams failed to win it all. Meanwhile, our counterpart in New Haven is doing quite well, capturing two Ivy titles this weekend. And if all goes well next weekend, Yale has a chance to be crowned the top dog in Ancient Eight baseball as well. We’ll tell you just what you need to know in this week’s version of Around the Water Cooler.

The Harvard baseball team will have to wait until at least 2012 to claim an Ivy League title.


Harvard and Cornell Primed for Softball Rematch

Published by E. Benjamin Samuels on April 25, 2011 at 10:11PM

The first-place Harvard softball team is on track to return to the Ivy League Championship where it could meet a familiar opponent.

It looks like Ivy League softball is headed for a rematch.

After Harvard fell to Cornell in a decisive third game in last season’s Ivy League Championships, the Crimson and the Big Red both sit atop the North and South Divisions, respectively, of the Ancient Eight.

Harvard, with a 12-2 league record has more or less clinched its spot in the finals, barring a colossal breakdown in the last week of the season.


Harvard, Brown Are Lowest Spenders of Ivy League

Published by Robert S Samuels on April 24, 2011 at 10:28PM

As any Prefrosh can tell you, Harvard’s 41 varsity teams are the most of any school in the nation. Despite that, Harvard had the second-lowest athletic budget of any other school in the Ancient Eight last year, with expenditures coming in around $18 million.

Only Brown spent less than the Crimson. Despite having the third-most teams in the Ivy League, the Bears doled out just $15 million between July 1, 2009, and June 30, 2010. Needless to say, Brown had funding issues, with head coaches receiving an average salary of just $63,618, a full 22 percent, or $18,170, less than the Ancient Eight average.

To ensure “more sustainable support for varsity teams,” Brown’s Athletics Review Committee has suggested a series of changes, including increasing the overall athletic budget increase and cutting four varsity teams: men’s wrestling, men’s and women’s fencing, and women’s skiing.

The committee’s report gave reasons for specific reasons for cutting each of these teams. For fencing, the costs of remaking the program into a competitive entity are prohibitive. The school cannot provide adequate practice grounds for the skiing team, the report contends. Finally, wrestling is quite expensive and isn’t a sport offered at all of the Ivies.

But to remain gender equity as demanded by Title IX, the Athletics Department would have to promote one women’s team from club status to the varsity level.

The committee hopes that a combination of raising the total athletic budget and cutting three teams will increase the budgets by 10 percent for the 34 teams left.

The Committee’s other recommendations include reducing the number of recruited athletes by 13% and updating athletic facilities and creating new ones.

If passed by Brown President Ruth Simmons, these changes could kick in as early as next fall.

Harvard, Teddy Roosevelt, and Football

Published by Ralph Haro on April 22, 2011 at 11:16PM

As the NFL continues to deal with negotiations between owners and the Player’s Union, it calls for a look to the past when the game of football almost ended, forever.


Magic of Numbers: The Winners' Circle

Published by Oluwatoni A. Campbell on April 22, 2011 at 10:11PM

20: Straight victories of Harvard men’s tennis team over Dartmouth

18: years since the Big Green men’s tennis team last defeated the Crimson

2: The national ranking of men’s lightweight crew

2: Year win-streak of men’s lightweight crew over rivals Navy

16: Goals scored by Harvard women’s lacrosse team in 16-6 victory over cross-town rival BU

8: Different Crimson scorers in game against BU