Sports Illustrated on Princeton Fans…

In 1965:

“Princeton people do not toast their football team’s weekly victories—they examine them as specimens. They check them for flaws, as a schoolgirl does her complexion, and then they brood over them. Last week Princeton gathered in its 16th straight specimen, a not-quite-comfortable 14-6 decision over Harvard, and the fans immediately did not begin to shout, “We’re No. 1!” and they did not dance and they did not sing and laugh it up into the night, and they did not break out all in gooseflesh anticipating the glory of Old Nassau.

What Princeton people do when they win is wonder. Pretty good, all right, pretty darn good, but this is the Ivy League, correct? An insulated league. That wasn’t UCLA we knocked the barium out of, that was another Ivy League test tube. How good is that? And in the Osborne Field House at Princeton on Mondays the team and the coaches sit down to their strip sirloins and speculate on how the national polls will purposely slight them this week and how the Lambert Trophy people will root around for some team like Syracuse that has lost only two or three games and rate it No. 1 in the East over Princeton and unbeaten Dartmouth.

Well, brothers of the Cannon Club and the Tiger Club and you old grads who get the seats on the 50-yard line in Palmer Stadium, brood no more. Do not believe those polls. Do not listen to the dirge. The Ivy League may not be what it used to be, but it is doing all right, brothers, and the Princeton Tiger is definitely not in the tank. It is the genuine article, hard and quick and slickly turned out in its single-wing trappings, and if somebody tells you there is a team in the East that is as good it must be on the tip of his imagination, brothers, his imagination.”

The times, they change.

    By David Walter on January 20th 2010, 8:15pm
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