At the regular Monday noon Parker House luncheon for Boston's football coaches and sports writers the scribes present unanimously voted Dick Harlow the coach of the week, and it wasn't just locally that Harvard's canny mentor was the object of a lot of favorable comment. It is hard to remember a time when any football team has received as much credit for going 60 minutes with out adding to the zero credited it at the opening whistle, as the 1941 edition of the Crimson has for holding the vaunted Navy to a scoreless tie.
And the rush to the Harvard bandwagon has been terrific. Last Saturday caused more split-second somersaults than have been seen since last June when Hitler walked into Russia. The number one example of this is David Francis Egan '23, whose acid comments about the state of Harvard football during the era of Gladchuck and O'Rourke, were not meant for publication in the Alumni Bulletin. Following the Dartmouth victory Egan started his flip-flop, and after the Navy deadlock he reached down into his asbestos-lined dictionary to pull out words and phrases not used since B.C.'s adventures with Georgetown and Tennessee last year.
Underdogs No Longer
And all this is doing Harlow no good in his attempts to keep, Harvard the pre-game underdog, a position in which it was fairly easy to keep the Crimson when inkslinger Egan and his ilk were on the other side of the fence. Up to this year's Dartmouth game, the quartet which, isn't in the backfield, of Gardiner, Miller, Peabody, and Pfister, were regarded as likeable chaps, capable of playing steady football, but scarcely in the light in which their Herculean feats of the last two Saturdays have placed them.
To hear the praises which have suddenly descended on their heads, you would think that if the 20th Century Limited should make its appearance at one end of the Stadium, these sturdy gridders would have it hogtied before it reached its own 20-yard line.
In fact, it becomes obvious that in order to have Princeton rated the favorite at Palmer Stadium Saturday, Harlow will have to release certified X-rays of the fractures, contusions, and breaks sustained by all of Harvard's starting lineup. Otherwise, for the first time this year the Crimson is going to enter a game on the long end of the betting.
Only 7 Points in 4 Games
And on the surface all this seems a little unreasonable for a team which in the first half of its season has chalked up the skimpy total of seven points. Princeton's record, however, is even less inspiring; for after an opening victory over Williams, of the Little Three, the Bengals have proceeded to bow to Columbia, Penn, and Vanderbilt. In last week's debacle, the sons of Old Nassan were snowed under by the catastrophic count of 46 to 7 by the unbeaten minions of Vanderbilt in a game played at Nashville.
According to Lyal Clark, Crimson line coach six days a week and football scout on Saturdays, the Tigers have been dogged by bad luck all around the football circuit, and, reinforced by the return of two injured players, they should be all set to give the Crimson a real run for its money. From tackle to tackle Princeton presents a formidable array, and its backfield is the biggest that Harvard will face all year.
Good Showing Against Penn
Against Penn the Tigers held the Quakers scoreless for the first half and forced the Red and Blue out of the defense which they worked successfully against the Crimson several weeks earlier. Around the ends and on pass defense the Bengals are not supposed to be as strong, but in these directions the Crimson has not sparkled offensively. Except for his end around plays. Harlow has been unable to get a man outside the oppositions flank, and even with his new contact lenses Don McNicol has been able to complete only three passes in two games, not a very a we inspiring record.
In Captain Peters the Tigers have an accredited triple threat tailback, although his press notices are not so long nor so glowing as these possessed by Barnacle Bill Busik. His wingback mate is Bob Perina, who passes, and both of these are dangerous if shaken loose. Tommy Irwin, the blocking back, and Bud Rose, a powerful fullback, comprise the backfield which should average 195, as compared with Harvard's, which is just under 180.