Eleven members of the Harvard track team compete this afternoon in the 77th annual Penn relays in Philadelphia. The meet, which is the largest in the world, will see more than 7000 athletes from all levels run in the 134 events.
Villanova is the big question mark in the meet. For the past three years, Villanova has won five of the eight relays. They were challenged last year by the University of Texas at El Paso, and Texas again promises to be a threat. Villanova travels to Philadelphia this year with a smaller team and enjoys less depth than it has in the past.
Participating in the hammer throw are Ed Nosal and Ted DeMars. "Nosal would have a shot," said assistant coach Ed Stowell yesterday, "but he would have to throw better than he did last weekend. There are a lot of other people who are very strong."
Chris Alvord. John Snyder, Howie Wilson and Bailee Reed will run in the 440 sprint relay trials. If the Harvard sprinters qualify today, they will stay in Philadelphia for the finals tomorrow. Otherwise, they will return for Saturday's meet at Dartmouth. Harvard sprinters took 22 of 23 available points in Saturday's Princeton meet.
Ed Dugger is running in the intermediate hurdles. "Dugger would have to run better than he did Saturday." said Stowell. Dugger tripped and fell during the hurdle run against Princeton.
The Crimson will be well represented in the distance medley relay. Bob Clayton will run the 880-yard leg. Dave Anderson the 440, Dave Elliott the 3/4 mile and John Quirk the mile. All four placed in the Princeton meet.
The Ivy League colleges plus Army and Navy square off in the Heptagonal mile relay. Running for Harvard will be Clayton, Alvord, Dugger and Dave Anderson. Penn is favored in the Heps relay.
Rick Melvoin, who was scheduled to run the 440 leg in the distance medley and anchor the mile run, will be sidelined this weekend due to a recurrence of a hamstring injury.
One hundred thirty-one colleges are represented in the meet. In addition, high school runners from as far away as Jamaica and Toronto, Canada will participate today. Grade schoolers will also compete.
Winners in each event in Philadelphia will receive wrist watches.