Football Days eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 400 pages of information about Football Days.

“I remember that I had not seen a victory over Yale since I was graduated from college in 1879.  Some of the suggestions that I made about the time men should be played were laughed at.  The standpoint I took was that a man should not be allowed by the coach to play until he was deemed fit.  The physician in charge was also a matter of serious discussion.  Many of these points are now so well established that to the present generation it is hardly possible to make them realize that from 1890 to 1895 it was necessary to make a fight to establish certain well-known methods.

“What would the present football man think of being played for one and one-half hours whether he was in shape or not?  The present football man does not appreciate what some of the older college graduates went through in order to bring about the present reasonable methods adopted in handling the game.”

[Illustration:  HOW IT HURTS TO LOSE]



There are few players who never experienced defeat in football.  At such a time sadness reigns.  Men who are big in mind and body have broken down and cried bitterly.  How often in our experience have we seen men taken out of the game leaving it as though their hearts would break, only to go to the side lines, and there through dimmed eyes view the inevitable defeat, realizing that they were no longer a factor in the struggle.  Such an experience came to Frank Morse in that savage Penn-Princeton game of years ago at Trenton.  He had given of his best; he played a wonderful game, but through an injury he had to be removed to the side lines.  Let this great hero of the past tell us something about the pangs of defeat as he summons them to mind in his San Francisco office after an interval of twenty-two years.

“The average American university football player takes his defeats too seriously—­in the light of my retrospect—­much too seriously,” writes Morse.  “As my memory harks back to the blubbering bunch of stalwart young manhood that rent the close air of the dressing-room with its dismal howls after each of the five defeats in which I participated, I am convinced that this is not what the world expects of strong men in the hour of adversity.

“A stiff upper lip is what the world admires, and it will extend the hand of sympathy and help to the man who can wear it.  This should be taught by football coaches to their men as a part of the lessons of life that football generally is credited with teaching.

“Alex Moffat, than whom no more loyal and enthusiastic Princetonian ever lived, to my mind, had the right idea.  During one of those periods of abysmal depths of despondency into which a losing team is plunged, he rushed into the room, waving his arms over his head in his characteristic manner, and in his high-pitched voice yelled: 

“‘Here, boys, get down to work; cut out this crying and get to cussing.’

Project Gutenberg
Football Days from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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