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At State, "a college, not a school," "Cy" Kipp arrives at the campus penniless and immediately tries to borrow money. He is the boyfriend of "Dodo" Gates, but notices Carol Arlington, the beautiful daughter of a businessman. "All-American" football player Larry Davis intimates to Betty Wilson that he hopes to marry her, but maintains that he must graduate and find a job first. When Cy is unable to pay for his meal at the Heigh-ho Cafe, he is assigned to wash the windows but only succeeds in breaking the glass. Carol secretly meets with Louis Markoff, who is posing as a law student, and he explains that a "committee" of radicals has selected her to be the new president of the Student League of Freedom. The committee orders an attack on the football program, which they contend exploits the talent of individual students for the college's benefit. To subvert Larry, Carol flirts with him at the gas station where he works and persuades him to stand up Betty and join her at a league meeting. At the meeting, Larry impulsively joins Carol's plan to fight football and is offended when Betty intimates he is not such a hero off the field. During State's game against Manchester, Larry is distracted, and his fumbling causes conservative coach Parker to withdraw him from the game. Afterward, Larry and Carol go to the cafe. Markoff's rumors that Larry deliberately lost the game cause Parker to suspend him. Former coach Bull Stevens and the "Old Grads" are brought in to restore morale, and Larry quits the team after rough tactics send his roommate, Paul, to the hospital. Markoff finds that his room has been ransacked and persuades Betty to withdraw the hidden records of committee meetings for Larry's benefit. However, Betty is kidnapped, and the next day, she and Markoff appear before Dean Churchill. Markoff, who is relying on campus radical Tony Tonetti for his alibi, is instead suddenly exposed as Russian agent Boris Marovich. Tonetti is actually a Department of Justice agent on the trail of enemy aliens who are out to subvert the United States government. At the police station, the spoiled Carol receives a spanking. Parker still refuses to accept a former radical on his team, even to break a losing streak, until at the end of the fourth quarter, the crowd shouts, "We want Larry!" Finally Larry is sent in, and in the remaining few minutes, wins the game by one point. He and Betty are then reunited.