Each year, the 300 members of the coaches' association name the man who has done most for the game. Current holder of that award is Glenn Warner, coach of Navy, one of the principal actors in Saturday's drama in the rain at West Point.
A supersalesman of soccer, Coach Warner is founder of the annual soccer forum which meets next month at Sarasota, Fla., with coaches, physical education directors and top players conspiring to extend the influence of the game. It was at Warner's urging that Matt Busby, coach of England's Manchester United team, agreed to make a motion picture in which he demonstrates the fine points of the game. This film, narrated by Warner, is sent out to any coach who asks for it, and so are other films in Warner's rapidly expanding library at Annapolis.
To Glenn Warner, as to hundreds of coaches, soccer is the best of all games for the growing boy. "When you put 11 boys out on a soccer field," he says, "you set in motion a contest in which no quarterback is going to tell them what to do. No coach is going to advise them while play is going on. They're on their own and in the course of a game each boy will have 40 to 50 opportunities to face up to situations and make split-second decisions all on his own. To see these boys in action is something wonderful."
Warner has a varsity and plebe soccer team at Annapolis, plus 24 company teams. Coach Palone of Army has the same number of teams at West Point. But although they held the soccer spotlight last weekend, the Army and the Navy are definitely not the whole story. The whole story is that up and down the country, in the parks and on the sandlots, among the amateurs and professionals, amid the halls of ivy and down by the gashouse, they're booting that ball. And next year, when you can't get a ticket to Army-Navy football, try sampling Army-Navy soccer. If you can get there, you're in—for free.