went out to the Tigers last week to come to Montana and hunt elk. The
invitation is for two weeks, and the Tigers can come any time during the
season, which runs from October 15 to November 15. Cookie Lavagetto of the
Senators sent word that his pitcher Tex Clevenger wished he could hunt elk too,
so Kochivar sent him an invitation, even though Washington beat the Yankees
only seven times. A nonresident big-game license in Montana entitles the hunter
to one elk, one deer, one mountain goat and one grizzly or one brown bear.
There are plenty of deer right around the ranch, and Kochivar has arranged with
rancher friends to take the players into wilder country if they have to go
deeper for elk.
You might think
that some faint signs of pity or mercy would show up in Kochivar's triumph, but
no. He still chuckles joyously at word of Yankee catastrophes, and laughs
outright as he says, "I'm glad I helped dispel the myth of Yankee
invincibility." The only difference is that he has stopped sending
telegrams every time a team defeats the Yankees. "The Yanks can win the
rest of their games now," he says.
The pull of
football comes from panoramas. It is for the sweeping runs and lofting
downfield passes—or the hope of them—that the stands fill up on autumn days.
But among the true followers of the game is many a man with an ardent and
thoughtful devotion to its microscopic detail. Such is William J. Perkinson of
Baltimore; through Sunday afternoons at Baltimore's Memorial Stadium last
season he heard fellow Colt fanatics applaud the long passes of Quarterback
John Unitas, likening them to guided missiles.
Not a bad simile
at all thought Perkinson, an assistant managing editor of the Baltimore Evening
Sun and a man of scientific bent. As a missile launcher, Unitas must have
problems common to all rocket scientists, Perkinson reasoned, including the
need to make allowances for Coriolis force.
As any college
physics major but few college quarterbacks can explain, Coriolis force, named
for the 19th century French mathematician who discovered it, is a measurable
effect produced on a moving object by the rotation of the earth. Could this
make the same forward pass thrown in one direction go farther than if thrown in
the other, and if so how much? Bill Perkinson took his question to an official
at the missile-making Martin Company. In due time back came answers which
Unitas may want to consider the next time he takes to his launching pad.
Noting that the
earth's west-to-east rotation would have little effect on football fields
facing north and south, the scientific report concerned itself largely with
what happens to a passer's accuracy as he changes throwing direction in such
National Football League towns as Washington and Los Angeles, where the fields
Angeles," the report said, "the deviation is 1.7 inches per hundred
yards. That is, such a pass thrown eastward there under the same conditions as
a pass thrown north or south in Baltimore would travel 1.7 inches farther. One
thrown westward would travel 1.7 inches less.
Los Angeles a long pass timed for finger-tip reception as a receiver tries to
outrun a defending back will be long or short by one-half to three-quarters of
an inch compared to the same pass thrown under the same conditions in
Baltimore. Compared with Baltimore, Washington, only 40 miles away, would give
you a measurable but hardly significant plus or minus deviation for a 40-yard
that quarterbacks need range-finding adjustments for Los Angeles and Detroit
was passed on to Unitas and Baltimore newspaper readers by Perkinson for what
it is worth. Colt quarterbacks may rightfully ignore it, he suggests, but he'll
be cheering nonetheless. Meanwhile, he's busy telling housewives that catsup
comes out of a new bottle more easily if they rotate it counterclockwise while
trying to pour. It's the Coriolis force again. You see, liquids flow from—but
that's another story.