In other words, if you can't lick 'em, join 'em, and if you can't join 'em, at least change the rules so you can compete with 'em.
For the past nine years Lawry's, a Los Angeles restaurant that prides itself on its prime ribs of beef, has staged an all-you-can-eat dinner for each of the Rose Bowl teams a few nights before the contest. The owners say that in each of the eight years preceding this year's game, the team that ate the most beef went on to win.
A couple of weeks before the game, Oregon State's Beavers put away 230 pounds of prime ribs. Two nights later, without apparent effort, the Michigan Wolverines tucked in 250 pounds of beef—along with 90 pounds of potatoes, 25 pounds of salad and six cases of milk and soft drinks.
So roast beef is better than tea leaves, crystal balls and fortune cookies. Michigan won 34-7.
Maybe Africa's giant Watusi never will learn to play a 1-3-1 zone, but Joe Lapchick, soon to retire as basketball coach at St. John's University in New York, is thinking of spending part of his retirement trying to teach them. He has a daughter living in Uganda and has been invited by a friend, one Harry England, to teach the Watusi the game.
"The Watusi used to be the warrior tribe there," Lapchick explains. "A runt goes 6 feet 10. But the Bahutu kicked them out. They're wandering around now, and Harry figures it would be a good idea to use basketball to restore confidence, pride and that sort of thing.
"Can't you imagine those 7-footers playing a zone?" he cackles. "Think of all those arms up there. We wouldn't have to score. We'd win 'em all, 1-0. We'd destroy basketball."
Then Lapchick's boys went on to win the Eastern College Athletic Conference Holiday Festival title against Michigan, a team noted for its height.