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CAMBRIDGE, MA – When Americans talk about college football powerhouses, M.I.T. (Massachusetts Institute of Technology for the non-geeks) isn’t usually in the conversation. But this season the Engineers (yes, that’s the team’s real name) have finally figured out the equation to gridiron greatness.
With a less-than-stellar history dating back to the late 19th century, football isn’t quite the draw here as it might be at Big State U. But when this team of brainiacs made it through the season undefeated — heading off to Maine for a playoff game on Saturday — word spread around campus that something different was going on with one of the athletics teams.
Here’s a look at their numbers: 9-0 on the field … 17 high-school valedictorians among the 80-plus players … and an untold number of SAT test aces. As noteworthy as that sounds, M.I.T. has produced 81 Nobel Prize winners. The latter numbers tend to overshadow the former.
Nevertheless, excitement has grown while stereotypes shatter. Nice guys may indeed finish last. But smart guys who know a thing or two about play-action passes and nickel formations can – and have – finished first.