Optimism pervaded the cross-country squad as it boarded the midnight Saturday, because Coaches Farrell and O'Connell and their runners believe that they will redeem the defeat by Yale by taking first place in the I. C. A. A. A. A. run this afternoon in Van Cortlandt Park, New York City.
The basis of this confidence lies in the fact that in Captain Coburn, Cutcheon, Watters, and Chapin the University has four men of exceptional scoring ability, who are at their best on a flat course and the journey through Van Cortlandt Park, although covering one hill twice, is essentially of the flat variety. The course at New Haven, where Yale nosed out the University a week ago Saturday by six points is considered probably the hilliest in this part of the country, even more so than that at Hanover.
Although successful practice over an exacting course would apparently mean a corresponding advantage over an easier route, such has been demonstrated not to be the case. Training over a hilly course gives primarily endurance, but not speed, while conversely work over flat country brings more speed than endurance. The University squad has spent most of its time this fall on the comparatively flat course along the Charles River, which should have primed it in the best way for Van Cortandlt Park.
Dartmouth Strongest Rival
This difference in the nature of the terrain applies not only to Yale potentialities but also to those of Dartmouth, which is considered the University's strongest rival for first honors. A month ago in a triangular meet the scores stood Dartmouth 33, University of Maine 36; Harvard 66; but Captain Coburn had only just returned to the squad after a prolonged absence, and Watters did not run at all. Even more important in calculations based on this score is the acknowledged fact that the Crimson has only this week reached the peak of its training. The same consideration also applies to M. I. T., which was patently at the top of its form in defeating the University 21 to 35 three weeks ago.
The Harvard team will consist of Captain Coburn, Cutcheon, Watter, Chapin, Harrison, Ryan, and Grossman. Barker will make the trip as the substitute.