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On the Bench

By Ivan W. Thomas

Every fall, the Crimson touch football team has trouble finding non-league opponents for its early schedule. The other Ivy League newspapers reluctantly appear on the Crime's regular schedule every year, having resigned themselves to fighting it out for second place in the League, and consoling themselves with the knowledge that the Crimson, unlike some other greedy college powers, never runs its score above 23 points. But non-league teams refuse to play the Crimson. "After all," said Nebraska Cornhusker coach Bob Devaney, "what could I say to my team before they took the field against an opponent that hasn't lost in 100 years?"

Some teams, it's true, can't get enough humilitation. After Bok's Jocks, alias the Harvard Administration, had fizzled to a 23-2 defeat in a well publicized game against the Crime last fall, Bok, a highly touted ringer from Stanford, arrogantly insisted on a basketball game in the winter. He discovered, however, that a basketball court is harder to fall on than the soft turn of his own endzone, and as a result he was forced to move his locker from Mass Hall to Mass General for a few weeks.

Understandably, few teams are willing to run the risk of such insult and injury. The New York Times did schedule a game this fall, but it bowed out upon learning that Timesman Neil Sheehan's play book had been stolen and released to the Crimson by Daniel Ellsberg, a second-string halfback on the Crime's undefeated team of 1956.

Nevertheless, although the Crimson could not find a victim for the gridiron today, the UMass Collegian has hesitantly agreed to run a cross-country race against the Crime's harriers. The Crimson will triumph, 2-23.

Elsewhere in the League:

CORNELL-COLGATE -- Cornell unveiled its Marinaro-less offense in a preseason scrimmage against Harvard's opponent, UMass, and rolled to a 3-0 victory. Cornell will miss Big Ed, but hold on to the Lake Cayuga championship, 18-14.

YALE-UCONN -- Yale surprised prognosticators by playing Dartmouth even in a scrimmage. UConn stumbled over one of the worst Princeton teams in history two weeks ago, 10-7, but they won't be able to handle the Eli's new wishbone. Yale, 20-7.

DARTMOUTH-UNH -- The Big Green Indians may have had their troubles in New Haven last weekend, but they'll still trample UNH 16-14 conquerers of mighty B.U.). Dartmouth, 36-3.

COLUMBIA-FORDHAM -- The scribes are pushing this one as Fordham's return to big-time football, an inner-city rivalry that will break attendance records, and Columbia's best team in 25 years. Consider Fordham's early season victories over such powerhouses as St. Peter's Football Club, the average attendance at Columbia games, and the last twenty-five years of Columbia football. The real question is whether Fordham can mash Don Jackson's knees before he retires to the showers. Columbia, 47-6.

PENN-LAFAYETTE -- Lafayette has not beaten Penn in 52 years, but they tried again last night under the lights at Franklin Field. The Quakers proved that experience doesn't equal ability as its veteran defense gave up four touchdowns to Colgate in a pre-season scrimmage, but Lafayette is Lafayette. The Quakers won, 55-12.

BROWN-RHODE ISLAND -- Holy Cross beat Brown without Joe Wilson last weekend, and the Bruins are headed for their second defeat of the season (and 15th in a row) today in a battle for Rhode Island Football supremacy. The mighty Rhodos will triumph, 24-21.

PRINCETON-RUTGERS -- Princeton is bad, but Rutgers is worse. The Scarlet Knights will fumble it away Princeton, 19-13.

HARVARD-UMASS -- UMass isn't bad, but Restic trickery will baffle the Redmen's sophomore defense, although a good UMass quarterback could give Harvard's defensive secondary a long afternoon Harvard, 28-16.

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