Referee.--Crowell, Swarthmore; umpire--Sharpe, Yale; field judge--Gardiner, Cornell; head linesman--Bankart, Dartmouth. Time of periods--12 minutes.
When Coach Fisher's reorganized Crimson eleven meets Indiana today at 3 o'clock in the Stadium, it will meet a real test, a test, however, that will be very much different from that which the University bucked up against last fall when it played Valparaiso, the western invader of 1920. Valparaiso was a "mystery" team about which the Crimson strategists knew comparatively little. Indiana is not. And unless Coach Steihm has pulled the wool completely over the eyes of this year's gridiron followers, his team this afternoon will display a conservative brand of football with trick plays and forwards reserved for a last-minute score-at-any-cost emergency.
The Hoosier eleven will line up on the first kick-off with a group of forwards who average more than 185 pounds from end to end. This means that the University must plow through a defence slightly heavier than that of Holy Cross last Saturday and just as agile. The Indiana linesmen are ruggedly built, are all experienced players, and notedly aggressive on both the attack and defence. They will also have a slight advantage over the University line in that they have played together in two games already this season with practically no shifts. On the other hand, beyond a few scrimmages with the seconds this week, Coach Fisher's new line has never worked out as a unit.
The Westerners feel that the recent big shifts in the University make-up indicate a most unsettled state of affairs. This is true. But the Crimson coaching staff believes that each change made in the line-up will result in producing a more powerful team and that the eleven which plays today will show far more strength than the one which took the field against Holy Cross.
Seven New Men to Start
Seven out of the eleven positions on the University team will be filled at the start of today's struggle by different men from those who began against the Purple last week. Captain Kane and Tierney will play their first game of the 1921 season at tackle, displacing Henry and Lockwood; Macomber will take Kane's place at left end; Bradford will fill in at center for Tierney; Buell will be the signal-caller; while Jenkins and Gehrke have been assigned to the half-back positions occupied last Saturday by Fitts and Chapin. Hence it can be readily seen that Coach Fisher's renovation has been far-reaching.
The playing of Bradford, Gehrke, and Jenkins will be under especial observation by the Crimson coaches this afternoon. These three are all Sophomores and will face their first real test as first-string University players today. Brad- ford has shown ability in the games he has been in to date to scent running plays and forwards when playing his position of "roving center" on the defence. He is quick and lithe and though not very heavy has a build somewhat resembling that of Havemeyer, last year's star snapper-back.
It is likely that quarterback Buell will use Jenkins for the most part on end runs. The former 1924 back is exceptionally fast and slippery and will have an excellent chance of circling the Indiana wings if he once gets going. Gehrke will do most of the punting for the Crimson and he will have a strenuous task in outkicking Captain Kyle of the Indiana team, who is rated as one of the best punters in the west, his efforts in this direction often reaching 50 or 60 yards in length.
In yesterday's pre-game signal practice and dummy scrimmage Coach Fisher sent Fitts back from end to halfback. On account of his recent injury Gehrke's physical condition does not make it certain that he will be able to play through the entire contest this afternoon. If needed, Fitts will be available to take his place in the backfield. He has still much to learn at his new end position and Coach Fisher will probably not risk putting him in at wing today.
Expect Owen to Gain Ground
If the University line shows the improvement on the offense which is expected, Owen should be able to tear through for bigger and more numerous gains than he has in his two previous games this fall. He will not be, however, the only effective line plunger in the Stadium contest. Captain Kyle of the Indiana team weighs 190 pounds and is sure to make the Crimson defense exert itself to the utmost to stop him.
In fact, the entire Indiana attack will probably be built around Kyle. Analyzing Coach Steihm's eleven from the point of view of offense, it is fairly certain that a straight-forward rushing game will be employed. Indiana's greatest triumphs during the past two years have come as a result of specializing in a hurricane, line-smashing attack. The obvious choice for the leader in this style of play is Kyle. The two halfbacks, Burke and Maynard, are also especially suited for a swift, running game. It was Indiana's irresistable rushing attack which crushed Kalamazoo 29-0 last Saturday. The Hoosiers did not use a single forward pass in this game.
In addition to the fact that his material is best suited to playing straight football, Coach Stiehm has been handicapped in developing any sort of intricate open play on account of the Western Conference rules which forbid any team starting gridiron practice until September 15. This means that the University players have a week's head start on the Westerners.
Exceptional Pair of Ends
If Indiana should try any forward-passing this afternoon, two wings of the highest quality will be on the receiving end. Hanny at right end is a veteran tipping the scales at 200 pounds and is considered the most skillful player on the team. In spite of his weight he is able to get across the line of scrimmage like a shot and is said to have yielded only four yards to any rusher coming around his end of the line during the 1920 season. On the other end of the line France, a 185-pounder, has proved himself an able understudy of Hanny. He is not such an experienced player, but it a bit faster.
There can be no doubt that individually the members of the invading eleven are players who will show great skill and knowledge of the game and will fight with all their power to make a name for themselves in their first entrance into the limelight of eastern football. Whether Coach Steihm has been able at this stage in the season to organize his wealth of material into a smooth-running machine which can stand up on even terms with the Crimson combination is a matter of conjecture. Coach Steihm's elevens have always been given to slow starts. For instance, last season the Hoosier eleven blew its chances of a tie for the Western Conference leadership by losing the first game against Iowa on account of one fumble at a critical point. After that disaster Indiana defeated three of the leading Conference teams in succession. Coach Steihm's greatest triumph, however, occurred in 1919 when his team made a score of 12-6 against Syracuse, which was rated as one of the two or three strongest elevens in the east