- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Dave has a red-haired temperament, and Chambers recalls Sime fuming: " 'Doc, I was just barely gaining on those guys.' Barely gaining on Richard and Bragg and he was mad as a wet hen. What a boy. All I told him was 'Dave, you just don't give sprinters like that a couple of yards at the start and then catch them,' and let it go at that. He got the idea."
So back to work he went, driving himself viciously, working for hours on his start and on his running form with the two coaches and Joel Shankle, Duke's fine senior hurdler and broad jumper. And Dave still vividly remembers those first efforts to become a great sprinter.
"The coaches would tell me to relax and Joel would tell me to relax. For a while that's all I heard. I always thought that in the 100 you simply dug out of there as fast as you could and kept right on digging. I found out there was more to it than that. Joel would tell me to just sit back like I was in a rocking chair and run, relaxed, relaxed, relaxed. I finally got the idea."
The result is the smooth, apparently effortless stride Dave has today. He runs with his torso almost straight up and down, far more erect than most top dash men, and reaches far out ahead with his long legs to pull the ground toward him. And he runs relaxed—so easy, it seems, that almost no one believes how fast he is really moving until they have seen him float away from a field of struggling pursuers. That spring he once ran 9.6 and was never over 9.7 outdoors, despite devoting most of his time to baseball.
Sime burst into national prominence the next winter on his second trip to Washington. This time, running against Richard and Olympic 200-meter Champion Andy Stanfield, the big sophomore swept the entire Evening Star sprint series. He won the 70, won the 80, and then won the 100 in a new world indoor record time of 9.5 seconds.
After that, the indoor meet directors couldn't get out invitations fast enough. Dave, traveling to New York with Shankle, ran four times in Madison Square Garden at 60 yards. He beat such sprinters as Johnny Haines of Pennsylvania and George Sydnor of Villanova—and he also lost to Haines and Sydnor. When he was off to a good start there was no catching him; when his start was faulty, sometimes he could get there first and sometimes not. Two yards, he discovered anew, was a lot to give away at 60 yards against lighter and quicker and smaller men built for that distance.
"We were more than pleased," says Lewis, "for we didn't expect that he would win them all."
"Just wait," said Shankle one night after Sime had lost a close one, "until he can stretch his legs outdoors."
What happened once he moved outdoors was that Sime was never over 9.6 and he ran 9.4 six times before shaving off that final tenth of a second to equal the record. He broke the 220 and the hurdle record. He beat the famed young Texas sprinter, Bobby Morrow, by a yard on a rain-soaked track at the Drake Relays (SI, May 7). And now he must be considered the No. 1 candidate to sweep the 100 and 200 meters in the National Collegiate and AAU meets in California in June, the Olympic Trials at Los Angeles June 29-30—and lead the way to Melbourne.
MUSCLES + MIND = MEDALS