Pat O’Brien plays an opportunistic football coach hired to raise a struggling college program’s fortunes. The story reminded me of High Pressure, and while I bought O’Brien as a coach, he didn’t convince as a wheeler-dealer.
That said, he’s better cast than Dick Powell, who we’re expected to swallow as a football star. Then again, Powell’s character enjoys warbling piano ballads and prioritizes chemistry over football, so maybe Powell is perfect.
The ending’s a head-scratcher. The film spends much of its brief running time decrying college football’s corruption, yet everyone walks away the better for it.
John Wayne has a three-line scene with Powell. Look fast for Ward Bond as one of O’Brien’s assistants.