Never mind. Football at Tufts has something going for it that far more powerful football schools don't have. Head Coach Vic Gatto, a onetime Harvard football captain, spends much of his spare time each summer recruiting—not players, but companies. He has a list of 75 or so that he's talked to in the last few years who send representatives to Tufts to speak to players about life after graduation, careers they can follow, courses they ought to be taking. There are talks almost every week for team members. Often, companies take on Tufts players as summer interns or quasi-apprentices to give them a taste of the business world. Some have gone on to full-time careers with such companies.
"We want our players to have a sense of academic direction," Gatto says. "We want them to have a clear idea of how the mainstream of college life goes on outside football. At Tufts there are no athletic scholarships, and our football players aren't any different from the rest of the student body. But we do take up a lot of their time and energy, and this is one of the ways we try to pay them back."
SPANISH GOLD, AMERICAN HUNTERS
When two men representing five Florida treasure hunters contacted officials of the National Audubon Society last June with news that substantial treasure lay buried in the society's Rookery Bay Sanctuary near Naples, Fla., the Audubon people were naturally skeptical. But the agents insisted that this wasn't a run-of-the-mill cache. It was the legendary hoard of Chief Carlos of the Calusa Indians, who dominated southwestern Florida in the days of the Spanish Main. According to the old tales, Carlos had salvaged untold millions from Spanish galleons wrecked along the Florida coast. Now, said the agents, an ancient diary had revealed where Carlos had buried the treasure—and the site fell within the sanctuary. They proposed to scan the target area with a boxlike electronic detector to determine the precise location of the loot. Then they'd dig down, take it out and everybody would be rich.
Although this sounded like any one of a thousand other buried-treasure stories, the Audubon people didn't feel they could ignore it. The agents weren't fly-by-night types. One was Ron Miller, mayor of Sarasota, Fla., and the other was Benjamin Phipps, a lawyer who is a trustee of the Phipps Foundation, a general-purpose charitable organization that deals primarily with conservation matters. Further, if the public heard the rumors about Chief Carlos' cache, the bird sanctuary could be overrun and badly damaged by amateur treasure hunters, whether or not anything was actually buried there. An organized hunt would settle the question once and for all. And, of course, there was the possibility, however remote, that valuable treasure was there. While the hunters would get a substantial part of it, Audubon would get the rest.
The society decided to go ahead, and officials accompanied the treasure hunters to the general area indicated in the "diary." There, one of the hunters scanned the surface with the electronic box. Eventually, he marked off a 24-foot square and said, impressively, "The treasure is directly beneath this spot."
A soil corer ground down into the sand. And down. And down. Another hole was bored. And another. The hopes of the onlookers faded. When the search was completed, nothing had been found but water. Fresh water is a valuable commodity in Florida but hardly worth a king's ransom.
So the hunt was a failure, but at least rumors that treasure lay under the sanctuary were squelched. Or were they? Two months after the first expedition the agents were back, declaring, "We've been testing the box, and now it definitely works." They wanted another try. Audubon winced. Flocks of treasure hunters, as well as birds, now seem likely to seek sanctuary at Rookery Bay.