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NEW HAVEN, Nov. 20--This town was subdued and quiet--almost lethargic--today and it seemed that the upcoming week-end in Cambridge, when compared to the more pressing problems of hour exams and term papers, was of little immediate concern.
The atmosphere pervading the plush offices in the Payne Whitney gymnasium, however, was one of hurried excitement. Secretaries and student aides were working overtime, preparing news releases and official notices. Sports writers from the local papers talked among themselves at they waited for a telephone interview with Crimson football coach John Yovicson.
Yale football mentor Jordan Olivar tried to appear especially confident--"We go into the game with the full expectation of victory"--but his manner and tone clashed with his words.
He denied that Yale's showing in last week's loss to Princeton was relevant. "If we go back a little earlier we can look at the comparative Harvard-Yale statistics against Cornell," he said. Still, he worried about the injuries that are plaguing the Elis admitting that "the loss of Randy Egloff, our leading ground gainer and pass receiver, has definitely hurt us."
Egloff is not the only loss. First line right end Wally Grant, center Jim Thomson, and second line left end David Sherman are also out, and Olivar will be hard-pressed to find adequate replacements.
As Olivar finished talking, the interview with Yovicsin began in another office; his voice sounded confident over the loud-speaker phone extension. But the words from Cambridge seemed to depict a man who wanted to win, thought that he probably would, but who would then hesitate and somewhat nervously remember that he was coaching a team in the Ivy League, not one in the Big Ten.
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