IS THE BARK...?
In Lower Paxton Township, a suburb of Harrisburg, Pa., the supervisors consider a dog's bark as worse than its bite. They have issued a stern ukase ordering persons to prevent their dogs and other pets from making "any loud or harsh noise or disturbance which shall interfere with or deprive the peace, quiet, rest or sleep of any person within the township." Owners of barking dogs or roaring lions in Lower Paxton will be fined not more than $50 nor less than $15, and can receive a term of up to 10 days in jail.
Francis R. Mummert, chairman of the board of supervisors, warned his fellow legislators that 90% of the people in the township own dogs. "I'm sure if we are going to arrest everybody whose dog barks, we'll have to arrest everybody in the township, including the members of this board," he added. Jack Hurley, township manager, pointed out: "You can't stop dogs from barking, just like you can't stop people from talking." Or legislators from passing the unenforceable.
Haverford College, the small, educationally prestigious school near Philadelphia, suddenly dropped intercollegiate football last week, even though it had been playing the gridiron sport since 1879. Dana Swan, head coach and athletic director, said only 17 men had turned out for practice, five of them freshmen. Of the 30 veterans expected to return from last year's team, 10 decided not to attend school during the fall semester and eight more (five of whom had injury problems from last season) chose not to report. The players who did come out roamed the campus and recruited seven more "right out of the lunch line," according to Swan, and practice went on. But after a preseason scrimmage produced two twisted knees and a sprained ankle, it was decided to cancel the eight-game schedule.
"It was a very painful decision," Swan said, "but it would have been more painful to play. There simply are not enough troops around here to play two-platoon football without getting killed."
Jon Sprogell, a junior, said veteran team members were bitter because "the cancellation of football removes their chance to excel at something they were good at." John Evans, a senior, said, "The football team was the only place on campus where you had a true feeling of togetherness. It was a very happy time." But Garry Gasper, a junior who did not return to the squad because of an injury, had a different view: "Haverford's sports program is beautiful, but they don't have enough coaches. I know 11 players who had no prior experience, and they needed a lot of help. If you don't have the coaching, it's murder. And once these new guys see how you get hurt, they don't come out again."
Even so, Swan hopes to field a team again in 1973, although this depends on an evaluation by the college community. "There's a trend in the thinking of today's youth that interferes with football," he said. "This business of taking leave from college for awhile is a thing of the 1970s." Still, he pointed out optimistically, "We have 12 other intercollegiate sports this year, and our soccer team will be very good."