Sports at Harvard are plagued by a confusion of policy-making committees and by the lack of any publicity of athletic problems and their handling. The Council's report for the "Improvement of the Varsity Club" offers a chance to remove the shrouds of mystery and to centralize and simplify the direction of athletics.
As the situation stands today, there are four separate groups in control. At the top is the Committee on the Regulation of Athletic Sports, having the final say in all matters, yet with only three undergraduate representatives. Then there is the lethargic Undergraduate Athletic Council comprised entirely of students, under the thumb of the H. A. A. and powerless to serve as more than an advisory board to the senior committee. Finally there are two organizations regulating House sports. The addition of still committee to this hierarchy man seem the opposite of what is called for. But actually none of the four existing bodies can meet several pressing problems.
Not least among these problems is the sorry plight of the Varsity Club. Not only in need of building repairs, the Club also lacks internal efficiency and esprit de corps. Most letter-men know it merely as an eating place. The report proposes a committee which will supply stimulus for social functions. It will act as a house committee, and also give individual attention to working athletes and their difficulties. Furthermore, it will bring the Varsity Club into the everyday life of the University, with more student and less alumni control.
Finally the new committee will give a larger share of athletic responsibility to the boys who wear the jerseys. Functioning as a sort of student council for athletes, it will reveal through periodical reports, open to public view, its exact stand on every important situation that arises. Embarrassing problems such as the recent Negro incident would naturally be met by this committee. In addition, it would absorb the duties of the Undergraduate A. C. serving as a clearing house for complaints and suggestions, as the administrator of details such as managerial and cheer-leading competitions and the reception of visiting teams. Composed of the captains of major and minor sports, it would be divorced from the essentially different house athletic organizations. If this new committee can be realized with broader powers than a powers than a mere house committee, Harvard athletics will enter a new and brighter era.