W. C. Rhodes
One has only to hear Jim Rodgers tell the story of Billy Rhodes to realize how deeply the iron of football disaster sinks into the soul.
“Rhodes was captain of the losing team in the fall of ’90, when Yale’s Eleven was beaten by Harvard’s,” Rodgers tells us. “Arthur Cumnock was the Harvard captain, and the score was 12 to 6. Two remarkable runs for touchdowns made by Dudley Dean and Jim Lee decided the contest.
“For twenty years afterwards, back to Springfield, New Haven or Cambridge, wherever the Yale-Harvard games were played, came with the regularity of their occurrence, Billy Rhodes.
“He was to be seen the night before, and the morning of the game. He always had his tickets for the side line and wore the badge as an ex-Yale captain. But the game itself Billy Rhodes never saw.
“If at Springfield, he was to be found in the Massasoit House, walking the floor until the result of the game was known. If at New Haven, he was not at the Yale Field. He walked around the field and out into the woods. If the game was at Cambridge, he was not at Holmes Field, or later, at Soldiers’ Field.
“When the game was over he would join in the celebration of victory, or sink into the misery of defeat, as the case might be. But he never could witness a game. The sting of defeat had left its permanent wound.”
A YALE NIGHTMARE
Those who saw the Army defeat Yale at West Point in 1904 must realize what a blow it was to the Blue. The first score came as a result of a blocked kick by West Point, which was recovered by Erwin, who picked up the ball and dashed across the line for a touchdown. The Army scored the second time when Torney cut loose and ran 105 yards for a touchdown.
Sam Morse, captain of the Yale 1906 team, who played right halfback in this game, tells how the nightmare of defeat may come upon us at any time, even in the early season, and incidentally how it may have its compensations.