Sport: Baskets in 4/4 Time

At Yale, basketball used to be considered something better left to Y.M.C.A.s and volunteer fire departments. Until 1937, when Yale changed its mind, basketball lettermen had to be content with a two-inch minor-sport "Y" instead of five-inchers given to crewmen, footballers, baseballers and trackmen. Even after basketball became a major sport, Yalemen refused to get worked up about the game —until Tony Lavelli of Somerville, Mass, came along.

This season eager Yale undergraduates and townspeople have crammed Payne Whitney gym to watch slender, 6 ft. 3 Tony Lavelli shoot baskets. He was as...