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The History of Harvard's Commencement, Explained

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Although our foot-ball team did not succeed in capturing the championship this fall, it is certain that they convinced the college of one thing, namely, that whatever support and encouragement their friends have given them was not misplaced. Two or three years ago the interest in foot-ball was very low indeed, and therefore the eleven labored under great disadvantages. Last year, however, by constant and well directed practice, the university team made a very good showing and awakened the interest in foot-ball again. Such was the state of affairs at the beginning of the present season. The college as a whole was willing and anxious to support its representatives in every way it could, and although, at times, the croakers made their influence felt, still the eleven feels that there is no necessity for complaint over lack of enthusiasm among their friends. The policy of the team was evidently to play to win the championship matches instead of to score overwhelming defeats over elevens recognized as decidedly inferior, and making use of methods utterly useless against Princeton and Yale. A failure to grasp this policy led the Columbia men to wonder how it was possible for Harvard to out-play Princeton, but had our New York friends succeeded in touching-down once behind our goal instead of ten times behind their own they might have found out that things are not always what they seem, and their ideas of defeating Harvard might have met with a decided shock. Next year our foot-ball prospects seem still more brilliant, for we have promise of good players and plenty of support. The Yale-Harvard game on Thanksgiving day will keep the excitement up until the very end, so the team will in all probability receive encouragement and support without reserve. May '84 succeed in lifting Harvard a step higher in foot-ball and bringing back the sought for championship laurels.

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