"What's this?" he demanded.
"The team," our elected captain replied.
"Where's the second team?"
"There isn't any."
"My God!" said Coach Mowry. "Why did I ever leave Princeton!"
Pending his recruiting of a reluctant subsquad, largely by press-gang methods, he did contrive to teach us the essentials of tackling and line breaking.
Sports were not coddled in those days. Our season's allotment from the athletic fund for football was $478. Out of this the coach was paid $250 (which was considered extravagant) and the trainer $100. Where the balance went, I do not know. But I know well enough where it did not go. Uniforms, for example, consisting of thin canvas jackets, laced up the front, moleskin pants, woolen stockings and cleated shoes, were paid for by the players, each for his own. Nor did the money go into fancy pads, shin guards or helmets. These effete palliatives to violence were unknown to our generation.
We provided our own footballs. Twice a day we ran, not walked, one mile and three quarters to and from training table (bills for board rendered weekly and personally). Volunteer labor by the team helped to lay out and maintain the field, but the college, in a spasm of generosity, supplied the goal posts and whitewash for the lines.
How lowly was our status in the 1890s. No expense money. No under-the-table salaries. Not even much hero worship.
No special favors from a sympathetic faculty came our way. A junior might have made three touchdowns against Union on Saturday; just the same he'd better have his Tacitus pat on Monday if he didn't want a low mark. Some of our instructors, indeed, were inclined to downgrade all football men on the ground we had tainted the fair name of Hamilton.