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The enthusiasm which accompanied the new coaching regime drew many curious thousands into Soldiers' Field Saturday. To those who know the situation and expected no miracles the showing of the team was as satisfying as the conduct of the spectators was amusing.
The expected thunderbolt did not strike last Saturday. But there were certain rumblings which sounded very much like distant thunder. Probably some time will be required for perfecting but it certainly seems that Coach Harlow is entitled to a basic patent on his machine. At any rate, what he has done in his three short weeks calls for congratulations and hope. But at the first game of the season, the attitude of the spectators was so artistically phlegmatic that it is impossible to become vitriolic in denouncing it. As a dramatic achievement the unbroken calm of the grandstands surpasses anything out of Hollywood.
For all the warmth they elicited, the cheerleaders might just as well have slapped the fair back of Emily Post. Their violent antics were silently watched with grins of amused condescension. A slight interest was taken in the aerial performances, not of the hurtling pigskin, but of the paper airplanes. A flimsy glider would set a new record for distance flown; thunderous applause would echo from the stands. The befuddled gladiators would turn quizzical faces to the crowd, wondering what they had done to win so much praise. A small boy who was collecting the paper craft was advised to go out into the field to pick them up, or at least to ask the gentleman in white to hand them to him. "Kings Ransom the World's Best Scotch", outlined in crimson against the blue vaults of the heavens, attracted a few bleary eyes. But on the field, even the doodlebug tricks of the invaders as they entered the arena left the spectators cold.
Thus the cynical observer might be tempted to remark that as far as the undergraduate is concerned, it little matters what kind of a machine Coach Harlow has built. Still, in all the studied nonchalance of a game in the Stadium trained observers saw flashes of lightning. Whether or not the thunderbolt will follow is still, as with the elements, a matter for conjecture.
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