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At the first meeting of the basketball team two weeks ago, Coach Bob Harrison outlined three possible goals for the players to have this year.
The first was "to fool around and hope you have a good time." The second was to win the Ivy League championship and the third was to win the National championship.
To insure that the players shoot for number two or number three. Coach Harrison has hired a new assistant coach from upstate New York, Bob Hart.
Hart will probably spend much of the season working with the younger players on the team and scouting future varsity opponents. The squad has a large number of seniors on the roster, so that sophomores will have to move up on the team this year in order to gain experience.
For the past three seasons. Hart has been a coach at Brockport State, in New York. Two years ago, as head freshman coach. Hart had a 15-4 record. Last year Hart served as an assistant coach on the varsity which compiled a 21-3 record.
"I've really got a lot of breaks in my career." Hart said in an interview Sunday. "For three years I coached J.V. basketball at different high schools in upstate New York. We did pretty well in those years--winning 49 and losing only 5."
"But in 1968, the program at the school I was at collapsed: guys started smoking dope and drinking and I decided to leave."
Hart explained that after leaving the high school, he called the head basketball coach at Brockport State who gave him a job as an assistant freshman coach. Two seasons ago Hart was elevated to the head freshman job, when the regular coach departed shortly before the season began.
Following that season, he became an assistant varsity coach.
Hart met Harrison a couple of summers ago at a basketball clinic and quickly developed an enormous amount of respect for him. "I think Coach Harrison has got an excellent basketball mind, and is a solid person. I'd never met him until three years ago, but as a kid I used to sneak into the arena in Syracuse to watch him when he played for the Minneapolis Lakers."
Part Time Job
Because he only has a part-time job. Hart said Sunday he is going to have to substitute teach in Boston through the year.
In order to get to know Harvard and its students better, he has moved into a room at the varsity club.
Because he has seen these players on only one or two occasions. Hart could not comment on the prospects for the team. He did acknowledge that he might find the athletes at Harvard different from those he encountered at Brockport State.
"Coach Harrison told me that some of the guys are indifferent and not really interested in working for the good of the team, but from what I've seen, this isn't that case. Maybe because the guys have matured and are now seniors, they can work better together."
While his appointment is only a part-time one for five months. Hart knows that if he does well, it would be a substantial boost to his career.
"I know I'm an optimist, but wouldn't it be great to win the Ivy League championship in my first season. I like to think I'm a winner and I really believe we can give it a good shot."
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