Princeton Athletics was where I found my own distinctive voice. This is not to minimize the validation I found in pursuing my major (Religion) or in doing my thesis under the guidance of the late Professor Horton Davies, but simply that there on the playing fields of Lourie-Love and in Jadwin I made my mark and found my friends.
I learned much more from my teams’ loses than from the victories. The pain of losing a contest began at the final whistle; sometimes the bruise of defeat took hours if not days to ripen and swell. The return to practice after a loss offered the opportunity to improve skills and techniques and work with teammates to dig down and dig deep into the well of improvement. Always it seemed easier to practice those skills at which we were best; it took determination, and the desire to truly improve, to work on those areas where we were not successful. These workouts helped us to understand where we broke down as a unit and how to begin to rebuild together. Victories offered no such degree of introspection.
Just as my father, Thorp ’41, took delight in watching my team play, I love to watch the latest generation of Tigers take to the fields and best the best that Harvard and Yale have to offer. It was a privilege to compete as a Princeton athlete and to remain a part of such a rich and decent tradition.