NEWS AND NOTES
LOOKING UP IN THE REALM OF SPORTS
NOV 18 (New York) - You may cross off the business at the Polo Grounds yesterday by saying that the New York Giants and Green Bay Packers were matched to the point of comparative scoring equality and that the Giants cashed in on their one big chance to win. This is overlooking the statistical edge which the Packers compiled, but if there is anyone handy who still believes in statistics, he's going to have a giddy time waiting for Old Santa to come down that chimney next month. We hasten to record that the Packers did not lose because they were racked with dissension and lacking morale. There were no little whispering groups in hotel lobbies before the game time, and the players fought hard. Earlier in the year it would have been fashionable to say they fought like Finns - now we can hand the compliment to the Greeks. Extreme defensive conservatism won for the Giants. Few National league teams, facing the Packers once withering offense, would dare to sit down on a seven point lead with nearly 58 minutes of playing time left, and disdain to score further. But that's what the Owenmen did. They punted on third down, scorned the use of forward passes with their implication of interceptions, and threw together a study scrimmage line defense in their own territory which defied the Packers like the Dover Straits frustrated the Nazis. The Giant line outcharged the Packer forwards for a good part of the afternoon, and yet the Green Bay line didn't give up much yardage - 99 yards aren't a lot for a professional team's afternoon's work. The Packers were facing a team which, whipped in its last four games, just couldn't afford to lose again. Green Bay tried to match this with the spirit needed to regain first place in the Western division race, but the bit of ball-hawking by Herr LeLand Shaffer on the game's opening kickoff paid the dividend which gridiron alertness often merits. Four times since 1936 have the Packers lost to the Giants at Polo grounds, and yesterday was one occasion we really though they'd win. The Giants were handicapped by the absence of several key performers, no doubt about, but the men who filled their boots were fired to the skies. They couldn't bottle the Packers running and passing attack, but when their backs were crowded closer to the end zones and the subway supporters chanted their hymn of encouragement New York remembered that it was playing a team representing the National league's smallest community. The Giants' colors weren't stained here yesterday.
KENOSHA SCORES TWICE IN FINAL QUARTER TO WHIP CHIEFS, 13-3
NOV 18 (Milwaukee) - The Kenosha Cardinals, one of the nation's outstanding independent pro football clubs, gained sweet revenge on the Milwaukee Chiefs at State
Fair park Sunday afternoon when they struck twice in the final
quarter to hang up a merited 13 to 3 verdict before 7,446
fans, the season's best turnout. Thus the downstaters wiped
out the sting of an earlier 7 to 0 setback at the hands of the
Chiefs and ran their streak to six straight wins, three of them
at the expense of American Pro league teams. Kenosha's
group revenge on the slippery, mud coated, frozen field was
as nothing compared with that if its No. 1 hero, Weenie
Wilson. Like the villain of the movies, the spunky, gloating
little blond - one of football's wanderers - came back to throw
hooks into the very term which turned thumbs down on him
early in the season. Crowding Wilson for the spotlight were
John Dolan, whose breathtaking, juggling catch of Weenie's
pass for a touchdown wiped out the Chiefs' lead early in the
fourth quarter, and Harry Leysenaar, who batted a prospective
pass out of Sherman Barnes' hands and recovered the fumble in the end zone for the second touchdown and absolute victory insurance. But first on the list was Wilson. His kicking held the stumbling Chiefs at bay. His punt handling was excellent and his running a constant threat. His crowning effort was that pass to Dolan on a first down play from Milwaukee's 40-yard line. He was hit far behind the line, stumbled, staggered to the side and cut loose a split second before he was buried under a flock of blue jerseys. Juggler Dolan did his bit to send the delegation of 1,000 Kenosha fans into a frenzy of joy. Young Mr. Wilson spent most of the remaining minutes thumbing his nose at Coach Tiny Cahoon and the Milwaukee players, which was a bush league tricks enjoyed by no one but Weenie himself. But no one could deny that he had delivered the telling blows. Until the very moment when the Wilson-Dolan combination clicked, neither team had gained enough grounds to keep itself warm and it appears that Automatic George Karamatic's second quarter 23 yard placekick would win for the Chiefs despite the fact that they performed in anything but satisfactory fashion. To tell the truth, not a man on the club even closely approached the peak reached last week against New York. The ground attacks sputtered and died quickly, mainly because of the condition of the field, perhaps. The same underfoot hazard, plus the nipping cold, made accurate passing difficult if not impossible. Except for the 42 yard heave, Sherman Barnes to Art Blaha, which gave Karamatic position for his field goal, the Chiefs failed to threaten. The Cardinals were never that close and, as related, finally had to strike from a distance to pull the verdict out of the fire. The ball changed hands six times on fumbles, four of which were committed by the home club. The Chiefs had the edge in total yardage, 160 to 123. They picked up 65 on running plays and 95 in completing seven out of 27 passes, 17 of which were incomplete. The other three were intercepted. Kenosha registered 45 running and 78 on four passes in 14 tries. Thanks to four on penalties, the Cards showed the way in first downs, 8 to 7. In the absence of long runs and passes, the game turned into furious battling at close quarters which threatened at time to break out into open warfare. Before the final whistle in the rough, tough duel, three overzealous operators had been chased to the sidelines for - shall we call it ungentlemanly conduct? Kenosha lost Paul Berezney, former Fordham star who played a whale of a game at tackle, and Art Horne, reserve halfback. Art Blaha, Milwaukee fullback, became involved with Berezney in a private little feud and likewise was told to leave and not come back. Milwaukee, still holding second place, will close its American Pro league season against Buffalo at Fair park Thanksgiving afternoon.
PACKERS, RETURN FLIGHT ENDED, PREPARE FOR SUNDAY'S GAME AT DETROIT
NOV 19 (Green Bay) - Back to their home country to prepare for their final two contests of the NFL season came the Green Bay Packers yesterday, and today they were at work preparing for next Sunday's contest with the Detroit Lions, at Detroit. Yesterday the Packers ate breakfast at the Hotel New Yorker on Eighth avenue; had their lunch aboard two United Airliners 10,000 feet above the state of Indiana; and dined as their Milwaukee Road special coach was wheeling north through Wisconsin. The return leg of their air Odyssey was as smooth as silk. There wasn't a bump in the sky all the way from New York to Chicago, making more converts for this most modern method of moving a football club. The players were both chagrined and bewildered at their failure to defeat an admittedly inferior team of New York Giants Sunday. As all the air travel was provided with the idea of aiding in a Green Bay victory, the 7-3 defeat with which the Packers were tagged went a long way towards spoiling an otherwise spectacular trip. Because of this, the return flight was a pretty glum affair. The players motored to La Guardia airport, within sight of the defunct World fair's trylon and perisphere, and shortly after 8:30 yesterday morning, Eastern time, the two planes roared down the runway and took off for the West...LOOK OUT OVER OCEAN: They gained altitude as they moved over Manhattan, affording the occupants an excellent view of Manhattan island and lower New York skyline. Vision extending past the Statue of Liberty and far out over the Atlantic ocean. For five minutes the sight-seeing continued, and then the planes moved upward through the clouds, blotting out the ground below. At 10,000 feet they leveled off, riding above the flat cloud plain, which was brilliantly sunlighted. Both machines stopped at Cleveland to refuel, and receiving word of favorable weather conditions ahead, moved out within 15 minutes. Once in the air again, players were served a hot lunch, and each was presented with a pigskin travel kit, equipped with zipper, with the compliments of the United Air Lines. There was another treat, for two by two the men were allowed to go forward and watch the pilot and second officer at work behind the plane's giant instrument panel. There also were duplicate earphones, so that the Packers were permitted to listen in on radio conversations between the planes and the airports...PLANES START DESCENT: Eighty-seven miles east of Chicago, the mainliners started their descent, dropping 300 feet each minute until the airport was reached. The planes flew over the lower end of Lake Michigan, and the lake-studded northern Indiana country, once they dropped below the clouds. After landing, the Packers again were bundled into limousines for the trip to the loop being dropped at the Union station, where they had an hour's wait before their homeward bound train was backed onto the track. The players boarded immediately, and most of them dozed all the way to Milwaukee, arousing later to eat dinner en route. That's the story of the homeward trip, which made history in the matter of professional football travel. Whether or not the Packers will fly to their game at Detroit next Sunday hasn't been decided. Coach Curly Lambeau's immediate concern is that of whipping his squad into the right mental shape for doing creditable battle in its final games. Although the attitude of defeatism has settled both over fans and players, following victories for the Chicago Bears and New York over Green Bay in games the Packers felt they should have won, the fact still remains that only one game separates the Packers from the Bears in the Western division standings...FALL BEFORE REDSKINS: Unfortunately, the sand is running low in the hour glass. The door was open Sunday, when the Bears crumbled before the Washington Redskins, and that was the time the Packers should have stepped through, as they well realize. The Cleveland Rams may defeat the Bears, and so may the Cardinals, but even more likely than either winning is the fact that the Packers may tumbled before the Lions and Rams. Definitely, the 1940 championship picture is not alluring, but the Bears lost last Sunday and perhaps they'll lose again. Reports to the contrary, there is not dissension, in its ugliest form, on the Packer team. There is disagreement after every defeat as to whether certain plays should have been used, as to whether others might not have been more successful, but that's the form of second guessing which follows every losing game with every losing team. The men don't rant and rave at each other, but discuss matters intelligently. If the squad includes a handful of men who are dissatisfied at the infrequency of their use, and who talk out of turn about it, there's no evidence of such action when the squad gathers as a unit...TRYING TO IMPROVE: If a constant rehashing of game strategy, and attempts to iron out past mistakes, constitute dissension, then the Packers have it. The squad didn't seem to be carrying home any serious injuries from the New York invasion. Buckets Goldenberg acquired a honey of an eye when he was kneed in the first period, and the orb remained shut during the homeward trip. Tiny Engebretsen's knee was damaged; how seriously isn't certain yet. Pete Tinsley has a couple of beautifully swollen mitts. Otherwise, tape and gauze tell the story. Lambeau hinted yesterday that the squad may not finish the season with the identical personnel it now possesses, but the number of men to be released, if any, hasn't been announced. Right now, still practice sessions for the game at Detroit are in order. The Lions are tied with the Packers for second place in the Western division, and if the Bays want to share in the playoff cut for the second place team, they'll have to hustle. Then again, the possibility that the Bears may lose another one continues to crop up.
SECTIONAL TIES ARE RULED OUT
NOV 19 (Washington) - The NFL decided yesterday on a method of deciding possible tie games in divisional deadlocks for the championship playoff. League officials gathered here in a special meeting called as a situation developed which may see the Washington Redskins and the Brooklyn Dodgers tie for the Eastern championship. The Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers are in a scramble for the Western title...TOSS A COIN: If the score is tied at the end of the regulation playing time, the teams will toss a coin to decide who takes the ball and the first team to score will be declared the winner. One period will be played, and if no score is made by either team, then after a two-minute intermission, the contest will proceed until one team has scored. This method will be used only in case of a divisional tie and not for the actual championship. Existing rules provide for co-champions. The championship playoff will be held either at Griffith stadium, Washington, or Ebbets field, Brooklyn. The dates will be either Dec. 8 or 15 in case of a tie in either division. In event of an Eastern deadlock, th4e playoff will be at Washington. If the Bears and Packers, President Carl Storck said, the playoff will be at Wrigley field, Chicago, and if the Lions are in the deadlock the playoff will be at the University of Detroit stadium.
LOOKING UP IN THE REALM OF SPORTS
NOV 19 (Green Bay) - Ten thousand feet higher than the first football team ever attained, the defeated Green Bay Packers came home yesterday, still wondering just why they weren't on the satisfactory end of Sunday's score at the Polo Grounds. The first extensive plane itinerary for a professional squad has been completed, and successfully. Probably when the Packers took off for Cleveland last Thursday no more than four or five of them were looking forward enthusiastically to the flight. Probably when they landed at Chicago yesterday no more than four or five of them were not delighted with the service and perfectly willing to try it again. You can sneer, if you like, at the action in moving the Packers around by plane; you can whine, "What's the hurry?"' you can said, "I told you so", and adopt an attitude of super-criticism over the whole thing; but the fact remains that you're only working on a losing percentage. Because you're bucking progress, and even the folks who thought the gasless buggy was carrying humans faster than the Lord intended them to move now are cruising around in noiseless limousines. Before two years pass every football squad which can afford it will be traveling to many its games by airplane. There will be hesitant players, there will be fans who don't understand the wisdom or the progressivism of the change, and there will be those little hammers pecking away, but the squads will move by plane just the same. The matter of conserving the players' energies by dispensing with transcontinental trips is a big item in itself, and almost as important is the factor that the speedier rides enable the teams to dispense with fewer practice sessions. It's progress, no less, and it will be the coming thing in the life of the National league. The Packers just happened to be the pioneers of the new movement, just as they have pioneered so many other roads along the professional football trail...When the planes swooped down upon the Cleveland and Chicago airports yesterday, each weighed about 15 tons, including the cargoes, which is something of a record for moving prize beef around the country...E.J. Galbos, Milwaukee, was the United district traffic manager who stayed with the Packers throughout the flight, including the interval when the team was grounded at Cleveland en route to New York...Ed Crim of the Milwaukee Road made the arrangements for the flight, and accompanied the squad to and from Chicago...No. 1 dissenter on the home trip was Arnie Herber, who still isn't sold on the skyline idea...Clarke Hinkle is a complete convert...Pilots and stewardesses were different on the return trip than on the voyage east...Flight Captain H.C. Worthington of the second Packer plane discussed aviation training with the players as they came forward into the control room. "In this business, you can't make a mistake," he pointed out. "One error is likely to be too serious." The idea seemed to have some application to the Packers' recent defeats.
BUHLER GETS CONSOLATION FROM NEW YORK WRITERS
NOV 19 (New York) - Larry Buhler, Green Bay Packer fullback who fumbled the game away to the Giants in the opening minutes Sunday at the Polo Grounds, may feel like the goat of the fracas but the New York writers nearly all agreed that hard tackling robbed Buhler of the ball. Said Ken Smith of the Mirror: "When Len Barnum kicked off to Larry Buhler, the Packer receiver was struck so hard that he fumbled." Arthur J. Daley of the New York Times: "Giant tacklers, swarming downfield with a fury there were to exhibit all afternoon, cracked Larry Buhler as he started to run. The ball popped out of his hands." Rud Rennie, New York Herald Tribune: "This one break (the fumble) brought about by hard tackling and alertness was all the Giants needed." Concerning the disputed pass play in which Carl Mulleneauz apparently caught a pitch from Arnie Herber, only to lose it to snatching Mel Hein of the Giants, Rennie added: "This score (the Packers' field goal) emerged from the confusion following an intercepted foward pass which was ruled an incompleted pass. The Packers had started from their own 23. They had banged their way to the Giants' 40. There Mel Hein stopped the advance for a moment. Hinkle went back as if to try for a field goal from midfield, but it turned out to be a fake. Herber, who was down on one knee as it to set up the ball, rose with it and passed to Mulleneaux for a first down on the Giants' 33. A running play gained about a yard. So the Packers had the ball, second down and nine to go when Herber pitched another pass to Mulleneaux. Mulleneaux and Hein, of the Gians, went up for the ball. Mulleneaux had it, but Hein took it away from him, and was downed on his own 30. Time was taken out while officials wrangled over this play. Hinkey Hained, the field judge, insisted that the ball had touched the ground and that it was an incomplete pass. In the end, he had his way. But when the ball was put in play, the Packers, instead of needing nine yards fo a first down, needed only about four. In the confusion, the sticks must have been moved. So, on the next play, Uram went for a first down on the Giants' 24. All of which might have cost the Giants the ball game if the Packers could have continued their rush. But two passes failed to click and then Hinkle went back and kicked the field goal."
REDSKINS SET UP SECOND PASS MARK
NOV 19 (New York) - The Washington Redskins
have added another forward passing mark to their
1940 record, the National league's statistic bureau
announced Tuesday. The Redskins completed 13
passes against the Chicago Bears Sunday to bring
their season total to 131 completions, four more
than the record set by the Cleveland Rams a year ago. It marks the third passing record set by the Redskins this season. Single game marks were set a week ago when they made 25 completions for 312 yards. Washington has thrown 214 passes to date with 61% completed. The Redskins lead in ground gaining with 2,839 yards and in scoring with 225 points. Green Bay is second in ground gaining with 2,744 yards and in points with 174. Richard Todd, Washington, leads the individual scoring race with eight touchdowns.
AKIN INJURED FOR MILWAUKEE CHIEFS
NOV 19 (Milwaukee) - Len Akin, star giard, was absent today as the Milwaukee Chiefs drilled for their AFL game with Buffalo and it was announced he probably would be unable to participate in the Thanksgiving day contest here. Akin's hand was lacerated in the game against the Kenosha Cardinals last Sunday. His place will be filled by Frank Bykowski, former Purdue star. Other Chiefs reporting injuries included Bill Lenich and Merle Larsen. However, they were expected to see service Thursday. The Chiefs appeared ragged in their first Monday workout of the season. Timing was faulty on most of the plays. Previously Coach Tiny Cahoon had let them rest on the day after the game.
LIONS GET DOWN TO WORK FOR IMPORTANT SEASON FINALE WITH PACKERS
NOV 19 (Detroit) - The Detroit Lions returned home Monday from their pleasant sojourn to Philadelphia, and they didn't even talk about their 21-0 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles. They had the Green Bay Packers in mind. Detroit will close its NFL season Sunday afternoon against the Packers in U. of D. Stadium and they well realize the big difference between the Packers and the Eagles. Green Bay is one of the best teams in the league and Philadelphia is possibly the worst. Coach Potsy Clark gave his Lions a day off Monday but he warned them to be ready for some long drills on defense starting Tuesday. "We must stop the Green Bay attack, especially their passing attack, if we want to win this one," Clark said. The Lions have already beaten the Packers once this year, 23 to 14, in Green Bay and another victory Sunday would keep the Lions' mathematical chance to share in the Western division title. Green Bay will come to town with such outstanding players as Don Hutson, rated the finest pass catcher in football; Cecil Isbell, Andy Uram, Arnold Herber, Harold Van Every and Clarke Hinkle. Clark was pleased with the Lions' little trip to the City of Brotherly Love over the weekend because his team played some good football and nobody was injured. It isn't very often that a pro football game goes through a game without having some player seriously injured. It is likely that Paul Moore, the blocking back who suffered a sprained ankle against the Chicago Bears two weeks ago, will be ready to play Sunday in the season finale but Moore will not start. Clark said he intends to open with the same team he used against Philadelphia. The backfield of this combination is composed of Whizzer White, Fred Vanzo, Lloyd Cardwell and Dwight Sloan. With White and Sloan in the same backfield, the Lions will have two excellent passers on the field at the same time. Possibly White and Sloan will match the aerials of the Packers' two best passers, Isbell and Herber.
PRO CHANGES PLAYOFF RULE
NOV 19 (Washington) - The "sudden death" system - borrowed from professional hockey - will decide any tie games which may occur in the NFL playoffs between teams deadlocked for divisional leadership when the regular 1940 season closes. League President Carl Storck emphasized that the system would be used only in the case of a divisional tie and not in the league championship game. Under the new ruling, the team scoring first after the regulation time is over will be declared the winner. Storck said that went the regulation time ends, the teams will toss a coin just as at the start of a game and if neither team scores in the first playoff period, there will be a two minute intermission and the game will continue until one has scored. It is possible for Brooklyn with six victories and three losses to finish in a tie for first place in the eastern division with Washington, which leads with eight wins and one loss. Both have two games remaining and in the event of a tie, will play it off in Washington. In the western division, the Chicago Bears have won six and lost three. Green Bay and Detroit have five victories and four defeats. If Chicago and Green Bay end in a tie they will play off in Chicago. If Detroit finishes in a tie, the playoffs will be in Detroit. If there are no division ties, the championship game will be held at the home field of the eastern winner December 8, otherwise December 15.