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November 01, 1945 - Image 6

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1945-11-01

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Grid Fans
Give Bird
To Army
Success of Cadets
Causes Resentment
By The Associated Press
NEW YORK, Oct. 31-There seems
to be an undercurrent of resentment
in some quarters toward the Army
football team, this mental dyspepsia
manifesting itself in a variety of
ways, among them being:
A stubborn refusal to rate the
cadets as more than just a little better
than an average eleven, and
An acid "well, why shouldn't they
be better? They take their pick of
the outstanding college players of
the country." .
Army does get more or less of a
pick of outstanding collegians, as
does Navy, if the boys' heads are as
agile as their bodies and they can
make the steep scholastic grade.
It readily is admitted that, with
few exceptions, the opposition has
been sub-par, with other teams being
made up of apple-cheeked kids or
4-F's, with the able-bodied lads 18
or over in the service.
As to grading, however, it is just
our personal opinion that the Army
team of today would be a great team
in any year, comparable to the best
down through the years.
Also personally, we do not feel any
resentment concerning the success of
the Cadets. After all, Army is your
team and my team, everybody's team,
with the players assembled from all
sections of the country. We should
be proud to have the Armed Service
represented by such a squad.
Yousdo not have to take your mem-
ory on a long trip to recall the days
when there was an undercurrent, if
not actually a churning torrent, of
resentment against Army not because
it was so good, but because it was so
pathetically feeble and inept.
Just five years ago the Cadet rec-
ord for the season was one victory,
sevenrdefeats and one tie. Army
squeezed through with a 20-19 tri-
umph over Williams in the opening
game. Cornell came along to smother
the West Pointers, 45 to 0, but they
came back to hold Harvard to a 6-6
tie. Thereafter Lafayette, Notre
Dame, Brown, Penn, Princeton and
Navy took turns taking Army to a
swelling chorus to the effect that the
United States Military Academy was
turning out a fine bunch of panty-
waists to lead our soldiers in battle.
We have an idea that even those
who look with jaundiced eye at
Army's gridiron success the last
couple of years would rather see such
success than have the Cadets mauled
around by all comers as they were in
We also have the idea that after
this year football will level off, with
other schools returning to pre-war
strength and ,Army no longer a pro-
hibitive favorite in practically every
game. West Point still will pick the
good boys, but there will be plenty of
such boys to go around andother
schools will get their share. Mean-
while, we think that these should be
pride instead of resentment concern-
ing the Cadets' success. After all, it's
everybody's school, as is Navy.
Football .. .
(Continued from Page 1)
igan would go a long way toward
erasing the memory.
As Crisler put it, "Ohio State
made our job a lot tougher last Sat-
urday. Minnesota will certainly be
out after us."

Michigan, meanwhile, managed a
19-0 victory over Illinois at Cham-
paign over the weekend, although
the Illini were able to keep the issue
in doubt for three periods. Pre-
viously, the Wolverines had beaten
Great Lakes, Michigan State, and
Northwestern, and had lost to In-
diana and Army.
With a 2-1 Conference record,
Michigan rests in third place in the
standings, one notch above Minne-
sota, which has split two Big Ten
contests. In past years, two defeats
have usually been enough to re-
move a team from contention for the
championship, so both particpiants
will have their backs to the wall on
that account.
A victory for either school, on the
other hand, wojld leave it in the
thick of the fight. Only Indiana has
not yet dropped a Conference tilt,
but the Hoosiers have a tie with
Northwestern on their record. Ohio
State and Purdue are deadlocked
for second place in the standings
with 3-1 showings.
Northwestern, Illinois, Wisconsin,
and Iowa are all pretty well out of
the running, barring a miracle.
As for the Little Brown Jug, the
Wolverines have had all the better
of it during the past two years,
whipping their arch-rivals decisively
on both occasions. Before that, how-
ever, Minnesota won nine straight
contests, including three from Tom
Harmon and Co., to bring the all-

PREDICTING the winners of football games has never been the safest
business in the world. But this season the prognosticators have been
taking it on the chin worse than ever, especially in the Mid-West where
form, comparative scores, and the other yardsticks of the gridiron swami
have generally proved a liability rather than an asset.
Take last weekend for example. Unbeaten Purdue, hailed as the
strongest team in the Western Conference after a smashing 35-13
victory over powerful Ohio State the previous Saturday, met North-
western in what was supposed to be a "breather" for the Boilermakers,
as the Wildcats hadn't shown much disposition to beat anybody.
But when the dust had lifted, Purdue's bubble had burst with a
resounding bang to the tune of a 26-14 Wildcat victory. We doubt if
anyone picked the winner in that one.
Then there was the Minnesota-Ohio State fracas. Minnesota was
unbeaten, a typical power-laden Bierman eleven that specialized in lop-
sided scores and a bone-crushing attack. Ohio State had looked worse
than futile against Purdue. Yet, the final score was Ohio State 20, Min-
nesota 7, and the swamis took it on the chin again.
Those were only two in a day of upsets. All over the nation, under-
dogs were whaling the stuffing out of favorites. And that pattern has
been repeated over and over again all season long.
BUT WOE unto the crystal-gazer who dares to go out on a limb and fore-
cast an upset. The so-called "natural" last week was the Navy-Penn
clash. The supjposedly high-geared Middle machine has been sputtering
like a model T Ford all season, barely skidding by opponents it was sup-
posed to roll over with ease. Penn had been coming along nicely all fall,
displaying increasing strength each week.
Yes, the situation was ripe for an upset, and a lot of people said so.
But what happened? Navy, after stumbling around for three periods in
very amateurish fashion, suddenly came to life in the final quarter to over-
come a seven-point lead and win, 14-7. It took a prayer pass and a circus
catch in the last 25 seconds to do it, but the Middies won all the same.
None of which proves anything, except that 1945 has been a sad
year for the guess-perts who make their living by giving the public the
dope on football winners every Saturday. Most of their winning per-
centages are about as feeble as that which won the American League
batting championship.
But the forecasters' discomfort is the public's gain, in the long run.
After all, no sport would be much fun if the best team-on paper-always
won. The upsets, the surprises, and the other little oddities that make the
experts turn pale give Gus Fan a run for his money. The "anything can
happen" element is still the strongest in sports. And this season you can
tack on the "and probably will" without much fear of contradiction.
Bierman Closes Doors

liii II

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MINNEAPOLIS, Oct. 31 - (P) -
Michigan may see something new
when Bernie Bierman, Miniesota's
head coach, pulls the cork out of his
football strategy jug at Ann Arbor
That was the deduction of bystand-

ers today as the Gophers' mentor
walked his charges into the fieldhouse
for the third successive day for a
talk session, despite the prevalence
of brisk scrimmage weather.
Even the brisk warm-up scrim-
mage on the field was behind closed

II i

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