On an out-of-bounds play, a pileup occurred at my feet. Mud flew, and bodies, and a near-hysterical voice at my elbow screamed, "Crack his head off!"
Wabash, meanwhile, had unleashed a treacherous attack of orthodoxy that overshadowed Mont's more imaginative football. Coach Bowman's freshman quarterback, Cogdill, got over a case of the flutters (a fumble, an intercepted pass) and put his team in for two touchdowns in the first quarter.
Then DePauw came alive. A 92-yard touchdown march made it 14-6 just before the half. The extra point was botched. "Dang," Mont said, turning sharply on his heel. "We've been doing this 13 weeks, now we're dumb." But as we moved off the field he winked at me and said, "Helluva college game, isn't it?" It was, too.
I offer, in somewhat expurgated form, as a classic of its kind, Coach Bowman's halftime talk to his Wabash players: "Gentlemen," he said, "you have 30 minutes to play. For some of you, it's the last 30 minutes. DePauw hates your guts. You hate their guts. You got 30 minutes to put together all that hate and all the courage you can and kick their tails. Now relax and have a good time."
On the Wabash side I had difficulty deciding which action to follow. The Sphinx Club, those redoubtable rowdies, made a human pyramid that collapsed wildly in the grass. They also offered their own refinements in cheer lyrics:
"Rah rah ree, Kick 'em in the knee!
"Rah rah rass, Kick 'em in the weeknee!"
Thad Seymour, a vision in red and white, came out of his president's box to lead his annual cheer. "Gimme a W!" he shouted, waving his arms.
"Gimme an A!"