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To put the spark of genius in a thoroughly unspectacular outfit of Varsity grapplers will be the prodigious task of Coach Pat Johnson this year. Set back only by the loss of '37 Captain Brooks Cavin and Lorrin Woodman, semi finalist in the Spring Intercollegiates, a determined squad, heavily re-enforced by a brilliant Freshman octet, has begun daily workouts in the Athletic Building.
With the prospects for the coming season about the same as they were at this time a year ago, mat enthusiasts expect no new innovations in wrestling technique but hall with delight the "Harkness Special" which appeared for the first time yesterday. According to Johnson, number one match with M.I.T. will be a "walkaway" with chances for victories over Pennsylvania and Yale still decidedly in the balance.
Only sure berths secured now are in the unlimited and 175-1b. classes. Probably the brainiest wrestler on the squad, heavyweight Bill Glendinning thrilled a crowd of 1000 last March, when he toppled football Captain Charlie Toll of Princeton who had a 45 pound advantage. Short, stocky he has a good chance to gain Intercollegiate laurels in his last season here, if he can throw Pickett of the Elis who in March handed him his only defeat.
Captain Johnny Harkness, most powerfully built matman, kept his slate clean until he was crushed by Ross Shaffer of Penn State in February. Inventive, a dynamic grappler he has the best chance of al to chalk up an undefeated record. In the 165-1b. class Bill Daughaday, a Sophomore with an excellent Freshman record, is fighting it out with Albert Harkness '38, the captain's brother. With plenty of rough edges to smooth out, Daughaday, one of the two Yardling victors at New Haven, will probably win the position.
Pete Illman '40, captain of the '37 Freshmen, may climb into the Varsity 155-1b. berth this season. A member of the Exeter squad for some years before he came to Harvard to win several titles for the Yardlings, Illman knows more about the game than any one else, has not the speed and muscle of either Harkness or Glendinning.
Hotly contested is a place in the 145-1b. division between Ed. Barnes '38, Arthur Page '40, and Dick Lindenfelser 38. The latter represented the Crimson in several matches last year, has suffered his share of setbacks. But Page, unbeaten as a Freshman and a tricky, strong-armed player, and Barnes, who will stage a comeback after two years on the sidelines, are almost certain to unseat the '37 grappler.
Al Richter '40, a conscientious technician who held down the 126-1b. job for the Yardlings, and Frank Bosler '38 are fighting for the 135-1b. berth, with Bosler now ruling favorite. Weak point in the outfit is 126-1b, division in which two Sophomores, Jim Sears and Louis Daily have been working together. Daily, a Freshman substitute has been able to keep the last year's 118-pounder on the ground, but Johnson expressed confidence that Sears will improve.
First string in the 126-1b. class, Louis Ach has decided to come down one step to vie with Harvey Ross for the 118-1b. place. Ross, former Milten captain and a Junior this year, kept a clean slate in '36, had a medloore record on the Varsity. To boost the 126-1b. class Johnson may have Ach go back to his old position.
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