The fact that the University of Mississippi has canceled two freshman basketball games with Vanderbilt is ordinarily not cause for national concern. However, this year the Vanderbilt freshman team includes Godfrey Dillard and Perry Wallace (SI, May 16), the first Negroes to get basketball grants-in-aid in the SEC.
The two games, which were to have been preliminary to home-and-home varsity games, were arranged last spring by means of a gentlemen's agreement between Coach Roy Skinner of Vandy and Coach Eddie Crawford of Ole Miss. This fall Crawford backed out, pleading "schedule conflicts." The conflicts, it seems, were of Crawford's own making, although he may only have done what he was told. On January 14 the two teams were to have met in Oxford, Miss., but Ole Miss's opponent on that date is now John C. Calhoun State Junior College of Decatur, Ala. The second game, scheduled for February 11 at Nashville, will not be played because, Crawford explains, his freshmen will be unable to make the 240-mile trip "on account of school work." Instead they will meet Clarke Memorial College at Newton, Miss., which is 175 miles distant.
Both Coach Crawford and Tad Smith, Ole Miss's athletic director, deny that Dillard and Wallace had any bearing on the rescheduling. Coach Skinner is reserving judgment, but he's unhappy to have lost the games, if for no other reason than that Wallace will have two less chances to show his stuff, and Wallace, who is 6 feet 5, looks like he's going to be a good one. In his first five games he has averaged 20.6 points, 24.8 rebounds and has shot 47.1% from the floor.
Florida's Orange Bowl-bound Gators came up with two solutions for winning football this season: Steve Spurrier and Gatorade, a beverage cooked up by Dr. Robert Cade, a University of Florida physician, to replace body fluids lost during practices and games. Dr. Cade had found that players lose 2.5 to 4.2 liters of perspiration in a normal practice—or as much as nine pounds per player. Indeed, Florida had only one bad second half—against Georgia at Jacksonville. Gatorade, which is mint-flavored and contains half a dozen ingredients including salt and potassium, can't be faulted, however. A truck carrying 26 gallons of the stuff from Gainesville was stolen before game time.
...FOR THE GREATEST NUMBER
A year ago the U.S. Forest Service awarded Walt Disney Productions the rights to develop California's Mineral King Valley as a $35 million ski resort and recreational area, complete with one chapel, 10 restaurants, 14 lifts, 7,200 beds and no cars—the parking lot would be adjacent to the valley. However, since Mineral King is bounded on three sides by Sequoia National Park, its development is contingent upon getting the permission of the National Park Service to build an all-weather access highway across park land. At hearings held in Fresno last month, the Sierra Club argued that the two-mile corridor required for the highway should be made part of a new wilderness area. "This fragile, narrow valley can't stand the impact of 2.5 million visitors a year," testified Michael McCloskey, the club's conservation director. "The Park Service should not aid and abet the destruction of this valley with a mountain Disneyland."
Although we are among the most fervent supporters of the Sierra Club, in this instance we feel they are protesting mostly as a matter of principle, and that their rhetoric is not wholly justified by the facts. The demand for more recreational facilities for California's growing population cannot be ignored, and Mineral King, which is ideal for skiing, is only 228 miles from Los Angeles, 142 miles closer than Mammoth Mountain, now the nearest major ski area.
And although some of Disney's productions do not happen to suit our taste, it is unreasonable to characterize him as a wanton defiler of nature. "When I first saw Mineral King," Disney has said, "I thought it was one of the most beautiful places in the world, and we want to keep it that way. It is going to be even more attractive and accessible, so that more people will enjoy its beauty. This will be a recreation project, not an entertainment center."