"[He] made us fish or cut bait," Norris said.
As the ship sank at the dock, the hawsers began to fill with scurrying forms. The honor of the first defection belonged strangely enough to a man named Georgie Katz, member of the Guild from Pennsylvania and manager of Gil Turner. For all that he had once declared himself a loyal Guildsman, Katz agreed to let his fighter meet Gene Fullmer at Syracuse on Friday, January 20, in a televised fight under IBC auspices. Then up spoke Al Weill, manager of Champion Rocky Marciano. "I am," he said in Los Angeles, "going along with Julius Helfand and the New York State boxing commission." Weill sent in his resignation from the Guild.
"The Guilt," as Dan Parker put it, "is kilt." For Parker's summation of the events leading up to the happy ending, see page 37.
THE RETURN OF JOHN LANDY
In the 17 months which have passed since Roger Bannister edged past him on the last turn of the Mile of the Century at Vancouver, Australia's John Landy has become a forgotten man of track—after the excitement of last year's great season, in fact, it sometimes became a little difficult to remember that his mark of 3:58, set at Turku, Finland in 1954, was still the world record. There was little reason to believe that Landy would ever run again. His father felt strongly that a man of 25 was past the age of games ("I was in business before I was that old") and the runner tended to agree with him. And Landy's pride was bruised at Vancouver; standing beneath the stadium in his disheveled green sweat clothes he said sadly, "I've had it." He meant it.
But time heals and hope springs eternal. Last September, while carrying on his duties as a teacher of agricultural science (at Timber Tops, a branch of the famed Geelong Grammar School in the rugged Whittlesea Ranges, east of Melbourne), Landy began training again. Daily for three months he ran uphill and down over rough country. Last month on a vacation at Melbourne he ran on the flat in Central Park, where he had trained for years before setting his record. Even so, he was inclined to resist the idea of trying for the Australian Olympic team. "I don't," he said rather shortly, "want to make a fool of myself." Last week he entered a half-mile race against World Record Holder Lon Spurrier of the touring U.S. track team mostly to see whether he had anything left at all.
Nobody seemed more astounded by the outcome than Landy. He had run no time trials at 880 yards. Even in his best days, he had never been noted as a sprinter. He himself expected to end up somewhere in the middle of the field. But at 550 yards, despite a fast early pace and a soggy track, he was still fresh. He tore into the lead on the last turn and held it—while 8,000 of his countrymen roared with excitement—until he was but a few yards from the tape. Though the laboring American finally caught him (Spurrier won, the judge decided, by a scant two inches), both men were clocked in 1:51.8. It was the fastest half mile of Landy's life—under the circumstances an astounding performance. Almost as soon as he had gotten his breath he announced that he would return to the wars as a miler in the Olympics.
The fans of the Lake Forest (Ill.) College basketball team were in high good humor. Lake Forest had won six games, lost none so far this season and now there was to be an evening of relaxation. The program read: Lake Forest vs. University of Paris. Not Paris, Ill., which might be a serious matter, but Paris, France. Could anything be more amusing than a team from Paris, France invading the very heartland of basketball?
As the game began, it seemed sure that this was to be an evening of comedy. For one thing, the captain of the French team was a 5-foot 9-inch, spindle-shanked little man named Bernard Planque who looked like a daguerreotype of the village barber. For another thing, the visitors played a game that looked absurdly old-fashioned. They refused to enter the frantic shoot-and-rebound American style of play; instead they concentrated on ball control, an occasional well-executed fast break and set plays off the double-pivot offense. Of course, even when they worked the ball inside, the Parisians didn't look too good as they heaved the ball flat-footed toward the basket from some off-balance stance.