The calling out of candidates for the University crew yesterday afternoon and the prospective choice of a baseball captain suggest an observation on the attitude which the University ought to maintain in athletic matters during the coming season, as regards both participation by the students in the different sports and the relation of those who conduct and take part in these sports to other members of the University.
The consideration of first importance is that if our athletics are to be kept clear of excess and corruption they have got to be animated by the love of sport for its own sake. The desire for victory and the "honor" of a college should and may be a pure motive, but it is safe to say that nine tenths of the corruption in college athletics today is due to the domination of this motive, in a perverted form, over the pure love of sport. When, furthermore, the latter becomes obscured, teams are selected not from the large body of men who are fond of athletics, but only from the smaller number who are in sympathy with those who happen to be in control at any time and with the particular policy by which the latter seek to obtain victory and honor. If on the other hand the calls for candidates for our teams asked every one to come out who was fond of baseball, or football, or rowing, as the case might be, and were always responded to accordingly, there would not only be a large amount of material from which our teams could be selected, but a better, more united spirit and much more lively interest would prevail during each season's training.
With regard to the position of those who as captains or coaches are put in charge of our teams there should be a fair understanding. These men hold their positions not by their own choice, but by the will of the authorized representatives of the University. Together with the responsibility which they owe to the University must be considered that which the University owes to them, of giving them all possible material to work with and hearty support from the beginning to the end of the season.