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A definite change in the policy of the Athletic Association will be required if there is a continued curtailment of expenditures, William J. Bingham '16 director of athletics, declares in his report to President Conant, made public yesterday.
If Harvard is to continue in intercollegiate athletic competition, there can be no further curtailment, the athletic association head continues. As a remedy for the situation, Bingham intimates in his report that the University should contribute to the support of athletics.
One reason for the athletic association's difficulty in meeting its expenses, according to Bingham, was the addition of Freshman exercises to the responsibilities of the H.A.A.
"Several years ago the University relieved itself of the financial responsibility of the physical education program by asking the athletic committee to pay for it from gate receipts. When gate receipts dwindle, non-revenue producing activities must be curtailed, but I sincerely hope we shall not be asked to discontinue or curtail our Freshman exercise program.
Will Not Assess Students
Bingham's statement that he would not assess students for athletics in order to furnish funds for athletic competition "for a few," leaves the impression that he is considering the possibility of an athletic tax on undergraduates, since he states that "in our case intercollegiate competition involves hundreds."
The fact that Harvard athletics are now dependent on gate receipts is noted by the director.
"Such being the case," he continues, "our intercollegiate teams must have facilities, coaching and opportunities comparable to those of our opponents. I feel that the facilities are adequate.
"I also feel that our coaching is competent and intelligent. But in times such as these there is always the cry that we spend too much on coaching; that there are many 'gentlemen' (such is the touching distinction between a professional and an amateur coach) who would be only too glad to coach a Harvard team for no financial consideration."
This system does not find favor with the present athletic director. It was satisfactory, he declares, when competion was limited to teams from Yale, Princeton, and Harvard, but would not be sufficient under the present conditions.
Bingham suggests that Harvard should construct a hockey rink of its own.
"I continue to report the need for an ice hockey rink. Skating is one of the best forms of exercise, but is not available at Harvard. We rent the Boston Garden for practice periods for our intercollegiate teams, but are unable to furnish any facilities for informal skating and intramural competition.
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