Sport: Boy in Space

The sensation of the young indoor track season is a lanky, 17-year-old Boston University freshman named John Thomas. Unheralded and almost unnoticed as the more spectacular racing events swirled around the track, Thomas broke the world's indoor record for the high jump twice in the last three weeks. This week in the Millrose Games at Manhattan's Madison Square Garden, Thomas will pit his new 6 ft. 11¾ in. indoor record against Outdoor Champion Charlie Dumas, who holds the U.S. outdoor record of 7 ft. ½ in.

The towering (6 ft. 4¼ in.) son of a hefty Negro bus driver, Thomas grew up...

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