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Link Army, Pittsburgh, Navy, Syracuse, Colgate, Penn State, Holy Cross and Boston College into one league; borrow pro tem Yale and possibly Cornell from the Ivy; name it the Big East or the Northeastern Conference, and this "damn Yankee" combine would rank right up there with any conference in the country. In other words, some of the best individual teams in the nation this fall are to be found among the so-called independents, particularly those in the East.

Away from the eastern section, most of the large colleges are enrolled in conferences, so the independents occupy a smaller niche in the picture, but Notre Dame and Miami (Fla.)—see The Eleven Best Elevens—hold the independent banner aloft, and College of the Pacific needn't hide from anyone.

Army, with its fine line and fleet backs, must be ranked at the top of the heap in the East and close to the summit nationally (see The Eleven Best Elevens). Although three members of Army's so-called starting back-field are missing, there were few games last year when the combination was the same. Actually, this was the root of all of Army's fumbling and poor ball handling preceding the Navy game.

Pittsburgh is big and powerful. More than slightly reminiscent of the Panthers of the '30s was last year's edition under the direction of John Michelosen. The 1956 club may be stronger, but look at that schedule—opening with West Virginia, closing with Miami and interspersed with such breathers as Syracuse, Duke, Minnesota, Notre Dame and Army!

Syracuse, like Pittsburgh, is saddled with an awesome schedule. The first four games are enough to make brave men tremble and grow pale: mighty Maryland, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Army. Few teams in the nation could go through this foursome unscathed. If Syracuse does it must be rated close to the national peak.

Colgate last year was uncrowned champion of the Ivy League, defeating five of its schools. Rugged, well-coached, and hard-hitting, it could beat anyone on a given Saturday.

In the hallowed Little Three, Williams is the popular choice to supplant Wesleyan as champions because of the best freshman team in the school's history, undefeated in five games. Amherst should be better than its so-so 1955 team, but I lean toward Wesleyan to retain its championship.


COLORS: Purple and white.


1955 RECORD: Won 3, lost 4.


WATCH FOR: Robert King, C; Hutchin Tibbetts, B; Peter Jenkins, E; John Deligeorges, B.

THE DOPE: The Lord Jeffs look to be the weakest of the Little Three teams, but Coach John McLaughry isn't conceding a thing. He says that "Amherst is optimistic, and the team may fool a few people." If the Lord Jeffs are to spring any surprises they will have to be as the result of a stiffened defense, especially against passes, where the team has been weakest. Even with an improved defense in its armory, Amherst's next best bet for a successful season appears to lie in the offensive play of a 175-pound junior halfback, Hutch Tibbetts. Another topnotch player is Captain Bob King, a center who can go well both ways. End Pete Jenkins heads a strong delegation on the wings. Given a few breaks, the team could make trouble for someone, but they face a rough road in their last four games and will have difficulty breaking even over the season.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 29—at Springfield (12-27)
Oct. 6—Union (20-6)
Oct. 13—at Bowdoin (20-0)
Oct. 20—Coast Guard (13-21)
Oct. 27—at Wesleyan (6-25)
Nov. 3—Tufts (26-46)
Nov. 10—at Trinity (14-38)
Nov. 17—Williams (13-6)


COLORS: Maroon and gold.

BASIC OFFENSE: T and split-T.

1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 2, tied 1.


WATCH FOR: Bill Donlan, B; Larry Plenty, B; Tino Bertolini, G; Tony Quintiliani, G; Henry Sullivan, B; Tom Joe Sullivan, B.

THE DOPE: The Eagles expect to be flying high this season, and if they don't get grounded in their first game they could easily win everything. Coach Mike Holovak has a big, rugged squad with a lot of returning veterans. The apple of his eye is Billy Donlan, the little senior quarterback from Boston, a fancy passer and daring play-caller. But Donlan is not alone on this team. He's got a lot of good runners to send through on his favorite off-guard play and some outstanding linemen to spring them loose. BC's Achilles' heel this year may be lack of experience. They're looking for a lot of help from sophomores, especially at the tackles. But Holovak has come up with two good ones in brothers Steve (210 pounds) and Leon (240 pounds) Bennett. The Eagles should have a happy autumn.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Oct. 5—at Miami (Fla.), N (7-14)
Oct. 13—at Marquette (13-13)
Oct. 20—at Rutgers (no game)
Oct. 28—at Detroit (23-0)
Nov. 3—Villanova (28-14)
Nov. 11—-Quantico Marines (no game)
Nov. 17—Boston U. (40-12)
Nov. 24—Brandeis (27-0)
Dec. 1—Holy Cross (26-7)


COLORS: Scarlet and white.


1955 RECORD: Won 2, lost 6.


WATCH FOR: John Regan, E; George Spaneas, T; Lou Lovely, G; Charles Fiorino, B; Len Hill, B; Tom Pat Sullivan, B.

THE DOPE: The Terriers had a stormy time of it last season, but Coach Buff Donelli saw a silver lining in his freshman squad. With those freshmen now ready for the varsity, Donelli says, "Boston U. should be very good in 1957 and possibly a strong football team in 1958." Donelli's youngsters will get plenty of opportunity to show their wares, but the returning veterans will carry the main load. Most important of these in Donelli's wide-open offensive setup are alternate Quarterbacks Charles Fiorino, a senior, and Len Hill, a junior. Look for them to do a lot of throwing. BU will also have a good defensive line, thanks to Guard Lou Lovely. He's good. The Terriers have a lot of very tough games on their schedule, most of them near the end. If the sophomores have jelled by then they could surprise. Otherwise, wait till next year.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 29—Massachusetts, N (no game)
Oct. 6—at William and Mary (no game)
Oct. 13—George Washington, N (no game)
Oct. 20—Villanova, N (no game)
Oct. 27—Syracuse (12-27)
Nov. 3—Holy Cross (12-20)
Nov. 10—at Penn State (0-35)
Nov. 17—at Boston College (12-40)


COLORS: Red and black.

BASIC OFFENSE: Split-T and spin T.

1955 RECORD: Won 1, lost 6, tied 2.


WATCH FOR: Gus Del Rosa, C; Jim Niemann, B; Barry Maroney, B.

THE DOPE: The Bearcats are on the way back up this season, but they still look a year away. The team has some fine backs—headed by senior Halfback Jim Niemann, an outstanding runner—and good depth at the ends. However, the strongest position on the squad is center, where Gus Del Rosa is called "the finest two-way pivot man in the game" by Coach George Blackburn. Cincinnati's main weaknesses will be at guard and tackle, where they lack speed and mobility. Cincinnati will feature a wide-open game this fall, with much of the load on its running backs. With strength up the middle and on the ends, speed in the backfield and enthusiasm among the sophomores, the Bearcats may win a few games this season they ought to lose, but this is hardly their year.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—Dayton, N (14-15)
Sept. 29—Tulsa, N (21-21)
Oct. 6—at College of Pacific, N (13-27)
Oct. 13—Xavier (0-37)
Oct. 20—at Navy (no game)
Oct. 27—at Marquette, N (13-12)
Nov. 3—Detroit (0-0)
Nov. 10—Wichita (16-20)
Nov. 22—Miami (Ohio) (0-14)


COLOR: Maroon.


1955 RECORD: Won 6, lost 3.


WATCH FOR: Guy Martin, B; John Call, B; Lucian Mascellino, G; James Yurka, G.

THE DOPE: The Red Raiders lost a lot of good players from last year's squad, but they are looking forward to another good season. The main reason for this is Quarterback Guy Martin, who runs the option play beautifully and passes very well. He'll get plenty of opportunity to pitch the ball this fall, throwing particularly to his backfield companions. Coach Hal Lahar's biggest headache will be the replacement of four top ends and three leading tackles he lost from last season's squad. Lahar, a defensive specialist, faced a similar problem a year ago and licked it. He can be expected to do so again. However, the coach feels that it takes sophomores about five games to really get going. That means his team will not play its best ball until the latter part of the season when the going gets toughest. If the newcomers come through as expected, watch out!

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 29—Cornell (21-6)
Oct. 6—at Holy Cross (14-15)
Oct. 13—-at Rutgers (no game)
Oct. 20—-at Princeton (15-6)
Oct. 27—at Yale (7-0)
Nov. 3—at Army (7-20)
Nov. 10—Bucknell (35-7)
Nov. 17—at Syracuse (19-26)
Nov. 22—at Brown (25-0)


COLORS: Orange and black.


1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 4.


WATCH FOR: Dick Bass, B; John Nisby, T; Jim Reynosa, B; Tom Flores, B.

THE DOPE: The Tigers are going to be tough to hold this year. Coach Jack Myers has a really big line ready to go, headed by Tackle John Nisby (230 pounds), and a speedy backfield. But the real reason for the Tigers' excited roar is sophomore Halfback Dick Bass. This incredible speedster from Vallejo, Calif. played in just three freshman games last year and scored 10 touchdowns. Little wonder the Tigers are looking forward to his varsity debut. Teaming with Bass in the backfield will be two other very slippery prospects, Tom Perry and Tom Greene, and an excellent passer, Quarterback Jim Reynosa. COP will switch from its usual ball-control attack to a. wide-open game this year to accommodate this wealth of speed. There may not be a team on their schedule capable of caging the Tigers.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—Colorado A&M, N (no game)
Sept. 29—at Kansas (no game)
Oct. 6—Cincinnati, N (27-13)
Oct. 13—at Fresno State (no game)
Oct. 20—at Marquette (no game)
Oct. 27—Washington State, N (30-0)
Nov. 3—at Tulsa (no game)
Nov. 10—San Jose St., N (14-7)
Nov. 17—Hardin-Simmons, N (no game)
Nov. 24—at Ariz. St. (Tempe), N (no game)


COLORS: Garnet and gold.

BASIC OFFENSE: I formation.

1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 5.


WATCH FOR: Lee Corso, B; Al Pacifico, G; Ronnie Schomburger, E.

THE DOPE: The Seminoles only recently decided to take to the warpath of major college football, and in this, their second year of the big time, they are abiding by all the rules of the Southeastern Conference, their immediate neighbors. Perhaps they may some day be invited in. Coach Tom Nugent has a big job ahead of him getting this year's team ready for the fairly rough schedule ahead. His biggest problem will be at tackle, where Nugent lost every one of 1955's lettermen. Bob Thomas, a sophomore, will try to plug one side of the line; the other is still questionable. The main strength of the Seminoles will be their running, spearheaded by Halfback Lee Corso. End Ron Schomburger gives State some strength on the flanks, and little Bobby Renn, a quarterback, is raising hopes in Tallahassee, but the Seminoles still have a way to go before being considered a real power. As Coach Nugent says: "We hope to break even in our schedule."

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—Ohio U., N (no game)
Sept. 29—at Georgia (14-47)
Oct. 6—Virginia Tech, N (20-24)
Oct. 13—at N.C. State, N (7-0)
Oct. 20—Wake Forest (no game)
Oct. 27—at Villanova, N (16-13)
Nov. 2—at Miami (Fla.), N (0-34)
Nov. 10—Furman (19-6)
Nov. 17—Mississippi Southern (6-21)
Nov. 24—at Auburn (no game)


COLOR: Royal purple.


1955 RECORD: Won 6, lost 4.


WATCH FOR: Bill Smithers, B; Dick Arcand, E; Ray Guerard, G; Joe Murphy, T; Dick Surrette, B; Dave Stecchi, E.

THE DOPE: The Crusaders are resting a lot of their hope for a successful season on the strength of Quarterback Bill Smithers' right knee. They had won five in a row in 1955 before he injured it in the first period of the Syracuse game. They then lost four of the remaining five. If Smithers' knee is sound Coach Eddie Anderson will be able to concentrate his energies on a wide-open attack with plenty of passing. Smithers can throw the ball well, and he has excellent receivers to shoot for. Best of these may be Dave Stecchi, a transfer from Fordham, where he was on the last freshman team. The main weakness will be inexperience. As in the Ivy League, the Crusaders have no spring practice, and Coach Anderson opines: "I'd feel a little more optimistic if we had had a spring practice, because I'll be doing some position-shifting." But spring practice or no, there is still plenty of reason for optimism. Holy Cross is amply provisioned with talent.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 30—Dayton (13-7)
Oct. 6—Colgate (15-14)
Oct. 13—at Penn State (no game)
Oct. 20—at Dartmouth (29-21)
Oct. 28—Quantico Marines (7-0)
Nov. 3—at Boston U. (20-12)
Nov. 10—at Syracuse (9-49)
Nov. 18—Marquette (6-18)
Dec. 1—at Boston College (7-26)


COLORS: Maroon and white.

BASIC OFFENSE: T and split-T.

1955 RECORD: Won 6, lost 2.


WATCH FOR: Joe Bozik, B; William Covach, T; Mike McCoove, T.

THE DOPE: The Leopards had one of their best seasons in 1955. This fall's prospects are not quite so rosy, but neither are they overly gloomy. Coach Steve Hokuf says: "If some sophomore backs live up to expectations and some of last year's reserves improve as expected, we should be able to give all our opponents a game all the way." That's a lot of ifs, but one position Hokuf is not worrying about is quarterback, where he has last season's sophomore sensation, Joe Bozik, back again. Bozik is a good passer, handles the split-T like a veteran and can run on the option. Last year he completed 20 of 38 passes for 437 yards. If Bozik can't direct the Leopards over the goal line, Lafayette's tough defensive line will be a good bet to keep the opposition from scoring. The Leopards' problems, on the other hand, stem from lack of back-field speed and experienced ends. The 1956 fortunes depend largely on how often Joe Bozik can direct his attack across the enemy's goal line.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—at Muhlenberg (7-0)
Sept. 29—Temple (no game)
Oct. 6—at Delaware (6-14)
Oct. 13—Albright (no game)
Oct. 20—at Bucknell (34-13)
Oct. 27—Gettysburg (14-15)
Nov. 3—at Rutgers (16-7)
Nov. 10—-Western Maryland (no game)
Nov. 17—Lehigh (35-6)


COLORS: Brown and white.


1955 RECORD: Won 7, lost 2.


WATCH FOR: Dan Nolan, B; Bob Naylor, B; Alex Maslowsky, C; Pete Williams, T; Thomas Faillace, E; Austin Short, E.

THE DOPE: The Engineers had a fine season in 1955 and, with the same team returning practically intact, they promise to be even stronger this year. Coach Bill Leckonby will have to find a replacement for All-East Tackle Bill Doremus, but he has a raft of lettermen to choose from. The real strength of the team lies in the offensive backfield where Halfback Bob Naylor and Quarterback Dan Nolan give the Engineers a formidable one-two punch. Naylor is already being touted for All-East honors, but there is widespread feeling on the Bethlehem campus that Nolan is actually the better player. That is an argument that fails to bother Coach Leckonby. The only thing that keeps him awake nights is the Engineers' lack of additional speed in the backfield. But Nolan and Naylor last year-ran up 1,579 yards between them and, with that kind of attack, Lehigh can afford to hurt a little at the other two backfield positions.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—Gettysburg (21-18)
Sept. 29—Delaware (19-13)
Oct. 6—at Bucknell (27-20)
Oct. 13—at VMI (39-0)
Oct. 20—Virginia (no game)
Oct. 27—Rutgers (21-14)
Nov. 3—at Temple (27-14)
Nov. 10—Albright (51-19)
Nov. 17—at Lafayette (6-35)


COLORS: Blue and gold.


1955 RECORD: Won 2, lost 6, tied 1.


WATCH FOR: Art Katula, E; Dick Campbell, C; Jerre Carmody, B; Lee Hermsen, B.

THE DOPE: The Warriors are starting the season under new Head Coach Johnny Druze with no immediate hope of improving on last year's dismal record. Coach Druze explains: "We'll be long on fundamentals, short on talent and thin all over. But we could surprise a few teams with what we have." What Marquette has is an outstanding junior center by the name of Dick (Soup) Campbell, who stands 6 feet 1 and weighs 211 pounds, and Halfback Lee Hermsen, who was too light as a fullback but is expected to run well on the outside from his new position. Captain Art Katula at one end will also help, especially on defense. But Marquette is too thin and too inexperienced at almost every other position. If the Warriors can find some speed and consistent quarterbacking before the season is too far gone, Marquette might make a few winning noises. Yet the outlook is a poor one for Coach Johnny Druze who has too many holes to plug in his first year in Milwaukee.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—at Detroit (7-20)
Sept. 29—at Wisconsin (14-28)
Oct. 6—at Tulsa, N (13-0)
Oct. 13—Boston College (13-13)
Oct. 20—College of the Pacific (no game)
Oct. 27—Cincinnati, N (12-13)
Nov. 3—at Indiana (no game)
Nov. 10—Kansas State (0-42)
Nov. 18—at Holy Cross (18-6)


COLORS: Red and white.

BASIC OFFENSE: Split-T and spin-T.

1955 RECORD: Won 9, lost 0.


WATCH FOR: Tom Dimitroff, B; Dean Porter, B; Don Smith, T; William Mallory, E; Herb Fairfield, T.

THE DOPE: The Redskins, under new head Coach John Pont, will have difficulty duplicating last year's undefeated season, but don't count them out yet. In Quarterback Tom Dimitroff the Redskins have one of the country's topnotch performers. Not only is he deadly on both long and short passes, he's an excellent ball handler as well and stars on defense. Along with Fullback Dean Porter, he gives Miami power up the middle. Problems, however, may crop up in the line where the team lost its starting center and guards and one tackle. Part of the slack will be taken up by 240-pound tackle Herb Fairfield, a sophomore who played service ball. Miami has dominated the small Mid-American Conference for several years, and there is no reason why this order of events should not continue this season. It looks as if Johnny Pont will have a happy time following Ara Parseghian, who has moved on to Northwestern and the Big Ten.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—-George Washington (no game)
Sept. 29—Xavier (13-12)
Oct. 6—at Toledo, N (47-0)
Oct. 13—Marshall (46-7)
Oct. 20—at Ohio U. (34-7)
Oct. 27—Kent State (19-7)
Nov. 3—at Bowling Green (7-0)
Nov. 10—Dayton (21-0)
Nov. 22—at Cincinnati (14-0)


COLORS: Blue and gold.


1955 RECORD: Won 6, lost 2, tied 1.


WATCH FOR: Wilson Whitmire, C; Ned Oldham, B; Chet Burchett, B.

THE DOPE: The Midshipmen lost the bulk of last year's nearly great team—particularly George Welsh, the explosive little quarterback, and Ron Beagle, their All-America end. The passing attack must certainly be weaker, but Halfbacks Ned Oldham and Chet Burchett, with a year's starting experience under their belts, will partly compensate by giving the Middies added strength on the ground. The same is true of Vic Monto, who moves up from second-string fullback, following his outstanding performance against Army. Graduation took all the starting linemen except Center Wilson Whitmire and Guard Vernon Dander, but these two will give Navy plenty of strength up the middle. Coach Eddie Erdelatz can plug the holes with some of last year's reserves plus one of the Academy's better sophomore crops. The material is on hand at Annapolis, so it is a matter of how much seasoning it needs before it is ready and properly charged with that old Erdelatz "desire."

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 29—William & Mary (7-0)
Oct. 6—at Cornell (no game)
Oct. 13—at Tulane (no game)
Oct. 20—Cincinnati (no game)
Oct. 27—at Pennsylvania (33-0)
Nov. 3—Notre Dame at Baltimore (7-21)
Nov. 10—at Duke (7-7)
Nov. 17—Virginia at Baltimore (no game)
Dec. 1—Army at Philadelphia (6-14)


COLORS: Blue and white.


1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 4.


WATCH FOR: Sam Valentine, G; Billy Kane, B; Milton Plum, B; Jack Calderone, T.

THE DOPE: The Nittany Lions have had 17 consecutive winning seasons, but only three of the nine games on the schedule this fall—namely, Penn, North Carolina State and Boston U.—can be called reasonably safe. So this extraordinary record is in some jeopardy. Although the Lions lost star Halfback Lenny Moore and dependable Tackle Otto Kneidinger from last year's thin squad, there are still some bright spots on the horizon. Coach Rip Engle explains it this way: "I wouldn't be so sure that our team won't surprise. It's the hardest working team I've ever had and will not be dependent on any individual. Our over-all balance is good; this team could be better than it's rated." Penn State expects to lean more heavily on Quarterback Milt Plum's passes to a fine group of ends and Halfback Billy Kane. Kane will also carry most of the running burden. Engle still lacks depth in the middle of the line, but he is high on a number of sophomores he thinks are ready to step right into varsity jobs.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 29—at Pennsylvania (20-0)
Oct. 6—at Army (6-35)
Oct. 13—Holy Cross at home (no game)
Oct. 20—at Ohio State (no game)
Oct. 27—West Virginia at home (7-20)
Nov. 3—at Syracuse (21-20)
Nov 10—Boston U. at home (35-0)
Nov. 17—N.C. State at home (no game)
Nov. 24—at Pittsburgh (0-20)


COLORS: Blue and gold.


1955 RECORD: Won 7, lost 3.
Sugar Bowl: Lost to Georgia Tech 0-7.


WATCH FOR: Joe Walton, E; Bob Pollock, T; Dick Bowen, B; Corny Salvaterra, B.

THE DOPE: The Panthers are entering the second year of their big-time revival under Coach Johnny Michelosen, whose split-T formations are reminiscent of the late Jock Sutherland's single-wing juggernauts. For instance, there is the rugged Pitt line, anchored at one end by Joe Walton, a somewhat immovable defensive fixture and a most capable pass receiver. The crunching Pitt offense is directed by Quarterback Corny Salvaterra, who should be passing better now that he has been fitted with a more efficient set of contact lenses. Another back to watch is Dick Bowen, who showed a lot as a sophomore. There are still some weak points in the center of the Pitt line where the club is inexperienced, but the real problem of 1956 is the most testing schedule of any major collegiate team. Coach Michelosen is not kidding when he says, "Every team on our schedule is capable of beating us." But the opposite is also true.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—at West Virginia (26-7)
Sept. 29—Syracuse (22-12)
Oct. 6—at California (27-7)
Oct. 20—Duke at Norfolk, Va. (26-7)
Oct. 27—Oregon (no game)
Nov. 3—at Minnesota (no game)
Nov. 10—Notre Dame (no game)
Nov. 17—Army (no game)
Nov. 24—Penn State (20-0)
Dec. 8—at Miami (Fla.) (7-21)


COLOR: Scarlet.

BASIC OFFENSE: Single wing.

1955 RECORD: Won 3, lost 5.


WATCH FOR: Jack Laverty, B; Arthur Robinson, T; LeRoy Lusardi, B.

THE DOPE: The Scarlet Knights will be switching from the split-T to the single wing under John Stiegman, their new head coach who comes to them from Charlie Caldwell's staff at Princeton. Experience indicates that Rutgers can expect the usual offensive confusion and maladjustments that accompany the early stages of such sudden, radical changes, so the rooters along the Raritan are pinning their slim hopes on a rugged defense built around a pair of veterans—Tackle Arthur Robinson and End Donald Felber, both mainstays of last year's line. Stiegman, who was chief of Caldwell's defense staff at Princeton, can only hope that this defense can hold down the scores while Tailback Jack Laverty (switched from T fullback) and the other backs learn to run from the single wing. "We hope to become solid by midseason," he says. There is little chance, however, for an improvement on last year's record.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—Ohio Wesleyan (19-26)
Sept. 29—at Princeton (7-41)
Oct. 6—at Connecticut (no game)
Oct. 13—Colgate (no game)
Oct. 20—Boston College (no game)
Oct. 27—at Lehigh (14-21)
Nov. 3—Lafayette (7-16)
Nov. 10—at Delaware (7-33)
Nov. 17—William & Mary (no game)
Nov. 24—Columbia (12-6)


COLORS: Gold and white.

BASIC OFFENSE: T and split-T.

1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 3, tied 1.


WATCH FOR: Mel Powell, E; Jim Hughes, T; Charley Kaaihue, T; Walt Ackemann, B.

THE DOPE: The Spartans are offensive-minded this season, and their followers will see plenty of football. Coach Bob Bronzan's team is solid through the line and owns a group of hard-hitting backs, with two top-notch passers in juniors Marv McKean and Bob Reinhardt. Mel Powell at end, Jim Hughes at tackle and Charley Kaaihue, shifted from tackle to guard, give the Spartans their front-line strength, but otherwise they lack depth in experienced hands. Yet Coach Bronzan takes a fairly rosy view. "Our biggest drawback is lack of seasoned personnel," he says, "but we had the same outlook in 1952 when we ran up six victories in nine games." One player to particularly watch is Halfback Walt Ackemann, who will carry most of the running load. He will be ably assisted by sophomore Halfback Art Powell. This is Coach Bronzan's last season at the Spartan helm, he says, so he wants it to be a good one.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—Drake, N (no game)
Sept. 29—at Washington St. (13-13)
Oct. 13—at Stanford (18-34)
Oct. 20—-at San Diego St., N (no game)
Oct. 27—at Ariz. St. (Tempe), N (27-20)
Nov. 3—Denver, N (no game)
Nov. 10—at Col. of Pacific, N (7-14)
Nov. 17—Calif. Poly. N (20-14)
Nov. 22—Fresno State (13-19)
Dec. 1—at Hawaii, N (34-0)


COLOR: Orange


1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 3.


WATCH FOR: Jim Brown, B; Jim Ridlon, B; Dick Lasse, E; Don Althouse, E.

THE DOPE: The Orangemen were hardly noted in the football world last year until they dumped Army in one of the big upsets of the season. Since then the respect for Coach Ben Schwartzwalder's team has grown to the point where Syracuse must now be placed among the top three or four in the East. One paramount reason for the resurgence of Syracuse football has been a powerful ground game, featuring a pair of outstanding halfbacks: Jim Brown, the fleet 6-foot-2 210-pounder who could well be the top back in the country, and Jim Ridlon, who is almost his equal. As the season starts, the Orangemen must find a replacement for Eddie Albright, last year's quarterback who provided the team with a diversionary aerial attack. If Schwartzwalder can uncover a passer to keep enemy defenses honest, his club could be well up in the national rankings. Keep an eye on Syracuse, and look especially for Jimmy Brown. They don't come any better.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—at Maryland (13-34)
Sept. 29—at Pittsburgh (12-22)
Oct. 13—West Virginia (20-13)
Oct. 20—Army (13-0)
Oct. 27—at Boston U. (27-12)
Nov. 3—Penn State (20-21)
Nov. 10—Holy Cross (49-9)
Nov. 17—Colgate (26-19)


COLORS: Blue and white.


1955 RECORD: Won 1, lost 9.


WATCH FOR: Don Luzzi, T; Mike Flynn, G; Davey Parr, B; John Bauer, B.

THE DOPE: The Wildcats, after three years in the football dumps, are beginning to grow new claws. It is not just that Coach Frank Reagan has those 24 men returning from last season's dismal team. There is an incoming sophomore class that cheers up Reagan whenever he thinks about it. "We had a mighty good frosh squad last year," Reagan says, "and some of them might just be starting before this season gets too far along." The man the Wildcats are really watching is sophomore Quarterback Jim Grazione. If Grazione is anything near as good as he was as a freshman, he will not only break into the starting lineup but will also force the Wildcats to redesign their offense into a wide-open game to accommodate his sharpshooting passing arm. Until then, however, Villanova will play it fairly close to the vest, with returning backs Davey Parr, John Bauer and Bill Halligan doing most of the work on the ground.

1956 SCHEDULE (1955 score):

Sept. 22—-at Texas A&M (no game)
Sept. 30—at Detroit (0-6)
Oct. 13—at Dayton, N (7-19)
Oct. 20—at Boston U., N (no game)
Oct. 27—Florida St., N (13-16)
Nov. 2—at Boston College, N (14-28)
Nov. 10—The Citadel (no game)
Nov. 17—at Houston (14-26)
Nov. 24—Iowa St. (no game)


COLORS: Red and black.


1955 RECORD: Won 5, lost 3.


WATCH FOR: Gerry Baker, B; Bob Burns, B; John Corrodi, T; Norman Wissing, B.

THE DOPE: The Cardinals had one of their better seasons in 1955, and there is every reason to expect they will do as well this year. Coach Norm Daniels is particularly pleased with the over-all depth of his squad. "We're weak at only one position, tackles," he says. "But for us we've wonderful depth all over. We instituted a JV program last year and it's paying dividends by sending us a lot of boys who would never have come out for the varsity before." Strong running, both outside and in, will feature the Cardinal attack this fall, with little Scatback Gerry Baker carrying the principal threat. Norm Wissing and Bob Burns will combine on the inside running, with the help of sophomore Halfback Wayne Fillback. Passing is still a problem, but Coach Daniels may move Burns into the quarterback slot if no new talent measures up to the job. Wesleyan should have enough to give fits to all eight of its opponents and, most important of all, retain its Little Three title despite threatening news from Williams.