The man on the opposite page being lifted in triumph from the scene of a great battle is a college football coach who has succeeded. He is Tommy Prothro of UCLA. Winner of the Rose Bowl game last New Year's Day, he has been exalted in certain quarters as a strategist, psychologist, humorist, character-builder and worker of miracles. He is, in mortal fact, a member of a profession that has carved out a unique and forceful place in American society. As the college football season begins in earnest this week, there are approximately 600 coaches who will try to displace Prothro and the few others who temporarily ride at the top of the sport. Some will make it, but most will fail. All, as pictured on the following pages, will have their moments of intensity, doubt, anxiety and hope laid bare to the millions who follow their favorite teams. On page 45 of this week's special issue Coach Paul Dietzel, who has known both glory and frustration, discusses the whims of the profession. A preview of the season, in which the nation's No. 1 team is selected, starts on page 48. It is followed by detailed scouting reports on 252 schools, each one hopeful of fielding a miracle coach of its own during what promises to be a high-scoring year of the offense.
The organization man, ready at all times (even after the moment of victory) with a briefcase stuffed with plans, UCLA's Tommy Prothro relaxes only in work.
The once and future enemies, Navy's Bill Elias Cleft) and Georgia Tech's Bobby Dodd, greet each other more or less amicably after the game. In this traditional ceremony, winners smile—and losers sometimes fail to show up.
The tactician, businesslike Bob Devaney, directs Quarterback Bob Churchich in the deliberate manner that has bred winning teams at Nebraska. Like all the coaches on these pages, Devaney is a master pregame organizer.
The commander, Duffy Daugherty of Michigan State, can hide his wit behind that stern, W. C. Fields mask for just about the length of a game—and sometimes not that long, to judge from the faces of these players.
The lecturer, Dartmouth's natty Bob Blackman, drives home the elements of victory for benefit of Quarterback Mickey Beard. He must have said something right. The Big Green, scoring 30 points a game, went undefeated.
The cheerleader, effervescent Johnny McKay of USC, who can't sit still during a game, exhorts his men over the noisy hubbub of the Coliseum. A fine sideline strategist, McKay could devise nothing this day to stop UCLA.