1931 college football season

Last updated

The 1931 college football season saw the USC Trojans win the Knute Rockne Memorial Trophy as national champion under the Dickinson System. Rockne, who had coached Notre Dame to a championship in 1930, had been killed in a plane crash on March 31, 1931. For the first time, the champion under the Dickinson system also played in a postseason game. The Rose Bowl, promoted as an unofficial championship matchup between the best teams of East and West, matched USC and Tulane, No. 1 and No. 2 in the Dickinson ratings. USC won, 21–12. Also for 1931, historian Parke Davis, through research, selected Pittsburgh and Purdue as National Champions and these selections, along with USC, are all recognized by the official NCAA records book. [1] Both USC and Pitt claim national championships for 1931, [2] [3] and both are recognized by College Football Data Warehouse. [4]

Contents

Conference and program changes

New conferences

Membership changes

School1930 Conference1931 Conference
Arizona Wildcats Independent Border
Arizona State Teachers'–Flagstaff Lumberjacks Independent Border
Arizona State Teachers'–Tempe Sun Devils Independent Border
Birmingham–Southern Panthers SIAA SIAA/Dixie
Centre Praying Colonels SIAA SIAA/Dixie
Chattanooga Mocs SIAA SIAA/Dixie
Howard Bulldogs SIAA SIAA/Dixie
Loyola Ramblers IndependentDropped Program
Mercer Bears SIAA SIAA/Dixie
New Mexico Lobos Independent Border
New Mexico A&M Aggies Independent Border
Southwestern Lynx SIAA SIAA/Dixie
Spring Hill Badgers SIAA SIAA/Dixie

Program changes

September

September 26 The season started with an upset. St. Mary's College, a relatively small school in San Francisco, defeated USC 13–7. Tulane beat Ole Miss, 31–0 and Tennessee beat Maryville 33–0, while Pittsburgh beat Miami University, 61–0.

October

October 3 St. Mary's won again, at California, 14–0, and USC won its first game of the season, beating Oregon State 30–0. Tennessee beat Clemson 44–0 and Tulane defeated Texas A&M 7–0. Northwestern beat Nebraska 19–7. Purdue opened its season for the home crowd with a doubleheader, beating Ohio's Western Reserve 28–0, followed by a 19–0 win over Iowa's Coe College [5]

Pittsburgh won at Iowa, 20–0 Georgia beat Virginia Tech 40–0 Harvard defeated Bates College, 28–0 and Yale beat Maine, 19–0 Notre Dame won at Indiana 25–0

October 10 In Chicago, a crowd of 75,000 turned out at Soldier Field to watch Northwestern and Notre Dame played to a 0–0 tie in a driving rain. [6] Tennessee defeated Ole Miss 38–0. USC beat Washington State 38–6. Harvard beat New Hampshire, 39–0. In New Haven, the Georgia Bulldogs handed the Yale Bulldogs their first defeat, 26–7. Purdue beat Illinois 7–0 Pittsburgh beat West Virginia 34–0. Tulane defeated Spring Hill College 40–0 and St. Mary's beat the West Coast Army team, 21–7

October 17 Tulane and Vanderbilt, both 3–0–0, met at Nashville, with Tulane winning 19–0 Tennessee and Alabama, both 3–0–0, met at Knoxville, with UT winning 25–0. USC defeated visiting Oregon 53–0. Northwestern beat visiting UCLA 19–0 Georgia won at North Carolina, 32–7. Yale beat Chicago 27–0 and Harvard got past Army 14–13. Purdue lost at Wisconsin 21–14. Pittsburgh defeated Western Reserve, 32–0. Notre Dame defeated Drake 63–0. St. Mary's beat the University of San Francisco, 14–6. Neither SMC or USF play college football anymore.

October 24 Notre Dame (3–0–0) and Pittsburgh (4–0–0) met at South Bend, with Notre Dame winning 25–12. Tulane beat Georgia Tech 33–0; Tulane had outscored its five opponents 130–0. Tennessee won at North Carolina, 7–0; it had outscored its five foes 147–0. Georgia beat Vanderbilt 9–0. Harvard beat visiting Texas, 35–7 and Yale and Army played to a 6–6 tie, while in Pittsburgh, Purdue defeated Carnegie Tech 13–6. Northwestern defeated Ohio State in Columbus, 10–0. St. Mary's beat visiting Gonzaga University, 13–7. USC won at California 6–0

October 31 Tulane beat Mississippi State, but not without surrendering its first points, in a 59–7 win; likewise, Tennessee beat Duke, but was scored upon for the first time, in its 25–2 win Georgia won at Florida, 33–6. Northwestern beat visiting Illinois 32–6 and Purdue won at Chicago 14–6. Harvard beat Virginia 19–0 and Yale and Dartmouth played to a 33–33 tie. Pittsburgh won at Penn State, 41–6 Notre Dame defeated Carnegie Tech 19–0. Surprising St. Mary's extended its record to 6–0–0 with a 21–14 win over Santa Clara.

November

November 7 USC (4–1–0) and Stanford (5–0–1) met at Los Angeles, and USC won 19–0. In Montgomery, Alabama, Tulane shut out Auburn 27–0. Tennessee beat visiting Carson-Newman, 31–0. Northwestern beat Minnesota, 32–14. Purdue beat Centenary College 49–6. Before a crowd of 65,000 at Yankee Stadium, Georgia stayed unbeaten as it defeated New York University 7–6, with the aid of a 97–yard kickoff return by Buster Mott in the third quarter. [7] Harvard beat Dartmouth 7–6 and Yale beat St. John's College of Maryland, 52–0. Pittsburgh beat Carnegie Tech 14–6. Notre Dame beat Pennsylvania 49–0. St. Mary's suffered its first defeat, to the visiting Olympic Club, 10–0

November 11 In an Armistice Day game at Los Angeles, UCLA handed St. Mary's its second straight loss, 12–0

November 14 Tulane (7–0–0) and Georgia (6–0–0) faced off in Athens before a crowd of 36,000 for the rights to best in the South. The Green Wave rolled over Georgia's Bulldogs 20–7. Tennessee defeated Vanderbilt 21–7. USC beat visiting Montana 69–0. Harvard defeated Holy Cross 7–0. Purdue defeated Iowa 22–0 and Northwestern edged Indiana 7–6. Pittsburgh beat visiting Army 26–0. In Baltimore, Notre Dame beat Navy 20–0

November 21 Notre Dame (6–0–1) had not lost a football game in almost three years, its last defeat having been to the USC Trojans on 27–14 on December 1, 1928. A crowd of 52,000 turned out as (5–1–0) USC came to the Notre Dame campus in South Bend for the first time ever. The Trojans trailed 14–0 going into the fourth quarter, and was trailing 14–13 in the final minutes after Johnny Baker's extra point attempt had been blocked. In the final minute, Baker kicked a 34–yard field goal for a 16–14 win, Notre Dame's first loss in 27 starts. [8] Tulane beat Sewanee 40–0. Northwestern won at Iowa 9–0, and Purdue won at Indiana, 19–0. In Columbus, Ga., Georgia beat Auburn 12–6. Yale (3–1–2) hosted Harvard (7–0–0) and won 3–0

November 26 On Thanksgiving Day, Pitt and Nebraska, both 7–1–0, met in Pittsburgh, with the home team winning 40–0. Tennessee and Kentucky played to a 6–6 tie in Lexington. St. Mary's defeated Oregon 16–0.

November 28 In Yankee Stadium, a crowd of 80,000 turned out in spite of a snowstorm, and watched as Notre Dame was beaten by Army, 12–0, for its second consecutive defeat after 26 games without a loss. [9] Meanwhile, 40,000 watched in Chicago as Northwestern (7–0–1) and Purdue (8–1–0) met in a "post-season charity game" on a frozen field in Chicago, with the Boilermakers handing the Wildcats their first defeat, 7–0. [10]

Yale beat Princeton 51–14. Tulane defeated LSU 34–7 and Georgia defeated Georgia Tech 35–6

December

December 5 Tulane beat Washington State 28–14 to close at 11–0–0, unbeaten and untied, while Tennessee played NYU at Yankee Stadium, winning 13–0 to finish at 8–0–1. USC defeated Washington 44–7. St. Mary's closed its season with a 7–2 win over Southern Methodist (SMU).

December 12 USC and Georgia, both 8–1–0, met in Los Angeles, and the visiting Bulldogs were crushed 60–0

1932 Rose Bowl

For the first time, the Rose Bowl matchup included the No. 1 ranked team under the Dickinson ratings. That team, USC, was matched against No. 2 ranked Tulane. A crowd of 83,000 turned out in Pasadena, a Rose Bowl record. Though Tulane had outgained USC in total yards (378 vs. 233) and first downs (18 vs. 11), the USC Trojans made the most of their three scoring opportunities. In the third quarter, Erny Pinckert ran 28 yards for a touchdown, then, after the Trojans recovered a Tulane fumble, scored again. USC went up 21–0 before Tulane fought back with two touchdowns, and only a tough Trojan defense held the Green Wave from scoring more. The final result was USC 21, Tulane 12. [11]

Conference standings

Major conference standings

1931 Big Six Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Nebraska $500  820
Iowa State 310  530
Kansas State 320  820
Kansas 130  550
Missouri 140  280
Oklahoma 140  471
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Big Ten Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 10 Purdue +510  910
Michigan +510  811
Northwestern +510  711
Ohio State 420  630
Minnesota 320  730
Wisconsin 330  541
Indiana 141  251
Chicago 140  261
Iowa 031  161
Illinois 060  260
  • + Conference co-champions
Rankings from Dickinson System
1931 Border Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Arizona State $310  620
New Mexico 111  331
Arizona 111  351
Arizona State–Flagstaff 230  350
New Mexico A&M 120  640
  • $ Conference champion
  • Reference [12]
1931 Middle Three Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Lafayette $200  720
Rutgers 110  431
Lehigh 020  370
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Missouri Valley Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Drake $300  560
Oklahoma A&M 100  821
Creighton 220  450
Grinnell 120  530
Washington University 030  270
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Pacific Coast Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
USC $700  1010
California 410  820
Oregon 311  622
Washington State 430  640
Washington 331  531
Stanford 221  722
Oregon State 131  631
Idaho 140  340
UCLA 030  341
Montana 050  160
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Rocky Mountain Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Utah $600  720
Utah State 520  620
Colorado Agricultural 520  540
Colorado 320  530
Wyoming 320  640
Colorado College 430  440
BYU 230  440
Denver 350  460
Colorado Teachers 241  241
Colorado Mines 041  151
Western State (CO) 150  160
Montana State 020  151
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Southern Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Tulane $800  1110
Tennessee 601  901
Alabama 710  910
Georgia 610  820
Maryland 411  811
Kentucky 422  522
LSU 320  540
South Carolina 331  541
Duke 331  532
Auburn 330  530
Sewanee 330  631
Vanderbilt 340  540
North Carolina 233  433
Washington and Lee 230  451
Florida 242  262
Georgia Tech 241  271
VMI 240  361
NC State 240  360
VPI 141  342
Clemson 140  162
Ole Miss 150  261
Virginia 051  261
Mississippi A&M 050  260
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Chattanooga $800  920
Louisiana Tech 600  700
Centenary 300  550
Western Kentucky 710  840
Centre 510  821
The Citadel 410  541
Howard (AL) 311  822
Mercer 620  721
Southwestern (TN) 311  523
Loyola (LA) 210  540
Georgetown (KY) 320  450
Birmingham–Southern 430  540
Mississippi College 430  540
Murray State 220  531
Union (TN) 440  540
Wofford 340  450
Miami (FL) 230  480
Spring Hill 230  360
Louisiana Normal 240  540
Millsaps 240  350
Eastern Kentucky 120  251
Mississippi State Teachers 240  250
Middle Tennessee 130  640
Presbyterian 141  252
Transylvania 140  270
SW Louisiana 140  161
Stetson 150  350
Erskine 151  263
Louisiana College 160  260
Rollins 010  610
Newberry 030  260
Louisville 050  080
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Southwest Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
SMU $501  911
TCU 411  921
Texas A&M 320  730
Rice 330  640
Texas 230  640
Baylor 150  360
Arkansas 040  351
  • $ Conference champion

Independents

1931 Eastern college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Colgate     810
Pittsburgh     810
Cornell     710
Drexel     710
Harvard     710
Temple     811
Bucknell     603
Columbia     711
Massachusetts State     711
Syracuse     711
Fordham     612
Army     821
Yale     512
Franklin & Marshall     620
Brown     730
Providence     730
Penn     630
NYU     631
Boston College     640
Tufts     322
Villanova     432
La Salle     440
Duquesne     353
Carnegie Tech     351
Boston University     270
Penn State     280
Princeton     170
Vermont     180
1931 Midwestern college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Wilberforce     800
Marquette     810
Saint Louis     810
Detroit     721
Notre Dame     621
DePaul     630
Michigan State     531
Haskell     640
Western State (MI)     520
Michigan State Normal     321
John Carroll     442
Wittenberg     333
Kent State     340
1931 Southern college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Catholic University     810
Texas Mines     710
Delaware     512
William & Mary Norfolk     101
George Washington     522
Texas Tech     630
William & Mary     522
Navy     551
Wake Forest     440
Western Maryland     442
Delaware State     221
Georgetown     451
Richmond     450
West Virginia     460
Oglethorpe     360
South Georgia Teachers     360
Jefferson     171
1931 Western college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Saint Mary's     820
Loyola (CA)     721
San Diego Marines     640
Hawaii     321
Santa Clara     541
San Francisco     442
San Francisco State     233
Gonzaga     340
Cal Poly     351
Humboldt State     121
Columbia (OR)     250

Minor conferences

ConferenceChampion(s)Record
Big Four Conference Oklahoma City 3–0
Central Intercollegiate Athletics Association Hampton Institute 8–0–1
Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Washburn
Wichita
5–1
Far Western Conference No champion
Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Simpson 6–0
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference Kansas Wesleyan 2–0–2
Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Hillsdale 3–0–2
Midwest Collegiate Athletic Conference Carleton
Monmouth (IL)
Ripon
2–0
2–0
3–0
Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Concordia–Moorhead 4–1
Missouri Intercollegiate Athletic Association Northwest Missouri State Teacher 4–0
Nebraska College Athletic Conference Nebraska Wesleyan
Nebraska Intercollegiate Athletic Association State Normal and Teachers (NE)
North Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference North Dakota 3–0–2
3–0–1
North Dakota College Athletic Conference Minot State Teachers
State Normal and Industrial (ND)
4–0
Ohio Athletic Conference Muskingum 4–0
Oklahoma Collegiate Athletic Conference Central State Teachers 4–0–1
Pacific Northwest Conference Whitman 3–1
South Dakota Intercollegiate Conference Northern Normal and Industrial 3–0–1
Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference California Tech 5–1
Southwestern Athletic Conference Prairie View A&M 5–0
Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Tuskegee 7–1
Texas Collegiate Athletic Conference Hardin–Simmons
Howard Payne
4–1
Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association North Texas State Teachers 4–0
Tri-Normal League Unknown
Wisconsin State Teachers College Conference Milwaukee State Teachers 4–0

Minor conference standings

1931 Big Four Conference (Oklahoma) football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Oklahoma City $300  1200
Tulsa 210  830
Oklahoma Baptist 120  360
Phillips 030  150
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Big Four Conference (Wisconsin) football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Ripon $300  430
Beloit 210  421
Lawrence 120  240
Carroll (WI) 030  141
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Buckeye Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Ohio 400  710
Wittenberg 100  801
Ohio Wesleyan 210  530
Cincinnati 210  540
Miami (OH) 140  450
Denison 040  062
1931 Central Intercollegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Washburn +510  730
Wichita +510  730
Emporia Teachers 420  440
Pittsburg State 330  450
Hays Teachers 141  351
Southwestern (KS) 141  351
College of Emporia 150  260
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Colored Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Hampton $601  701
Virginia State 611  811
Morgan 420  520
Lincoln 520  540
North Carolina College 530  531
Howard 250  250
North Carolina A&T 350  350
Saint Paul's (VA) 350  350
Shaw 222  323
Virginia Union 331  441
Livingstone 032  053
Johnson C. Smith 060  060
Virginia Seminary 151  151
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Dixie Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Chattanooga $400  920
Southwestern (TN) 201  523
Howard (AL) 311  822
Centre 110  821
Mississippi College 110  540
Birmingham–Southern 230  540
Mercer 120  721
Millsaps 030  350
Spring Hill 030  360
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Far Western Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Pacific (CA) 212  522
Cal Aggies 212  422
Chico State 211  341
Nevada 211  252
Fresno State 320  460
San Jose State 050  180
  • * No champion was named for the 1931 season.
1931 Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Monmouth (IL) $501  901
Millikin 410  630
Bradley 410  530
Augustana (IL) 312  522
St. Viator 520  520
Southern Illinois 420  720
North Central 420  520
Northern Illinois State 420  530
Carthage 331  441
Elmhurst 330  440
Knox (IL) 221  351
Illinois Wesleyan 330  350
McKendree 231  441
Eastern Illinois 230  340
Mount Morris 121  441
Eureka 241  341
Shurtleff 241  341
Western Illinois 240  260
Illinois College 142  252
Illinois State 161  161
Lake Forest 022  024
Wheaton (IL) 030  350
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Indiana Intercollegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Valparaiso 400  810
DePauw 400  710
Franklin (IN) 710  710
Rose Poly 520  620
Manchester 210  440
Butler 210  350
Indiana State 320  430
Evansville 330  350
Wabash 330  351
Oakland City 230  330
Central Normal 240  240
Earlham 240  250
Ball State 250  260
Hanover 061  171
Indiana Central 061  061
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Kansas Wesleyan $202  602
Ottawa 220  530
Bethany (KS) 112  243
Baker 121  252
McPherson 121  261
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Hillsdale $302  602
Alma 311  331
Olivet 220  530
Kalamazoo 230  540
Hope 131  341
Albion 130  340
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Concordia (MN) $410  521
St. Olaf 310  620
St. Thomas (MN) 310  431
Saint John's (MN) 320  421
Macalester 221  421
Gustavus Adolphus 230  250
Hamline 131  251
Augsburg 050  050
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Missouri College Athletic Union football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Westminster (MO) $401  801
Missouri Mines 200  530
Missouri Valley 211  531
Central Methodist 331  441
Tarkio 013  233
William Jewell 013  234
Culver–Stockton 011  251
Drury 042  152
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Missouri Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
NW Missouri State $400  900
Kirksville State 211  611
SW Missouri State 211  521
Central Missouri State 130  380
SE Missouri State 040  280
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Nebraska College Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Nebraska Wesleyan $401  431
Hastings 103  224
York (NE) 212  332
Cotner 230  340
Midland 122  152
Doane 040  161
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Nebraska Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Wayne State $301  701
Omaha 111  611
Kearney State 220  550
Peru State 220  441
Chadron State 030  340
  • $ Conference champion
1931 New England Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
New Hampshire +200  720
Rhode Island State +200  440
Maine 120  430
Connecticut 030  233
  • + Conference co-champions
1931 North Central Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
North Dakota $400  812
South Dakota State 220  630
North Dakota Agricultural 220  550
South Dakota 130  250
Morningside 130  260
  • $ Conference champion
1931 North State Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Appalachian State $300  922
Catawba 210  731
Guilford 210  560
Elon 210  350
Lenoir–Rhyne 140  370
High Point 140  270
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Northwest Ohio League football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Defiance $201  601
Bluffton 102  223
Bowling Green 012  314
Findlay 021  331
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Ohio Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Muskingum $400  800
Western Reserve 300  351
Baldwin–Wallace 401  503
Otterbein 510  530
Mount Union 410  721
Ohio Northern 310  620
Case 411  431
Xavier 101  431
Heidelberg 210  340
Dayton 001  532
Kenyon 330  430
Oberlin 230  341
Wooster 240  450
Ashland 260  260
Capital 140  151
Marietta 140  170
Akron 060  170
Hiram 060  080
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Oklahoma Collegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Central State (OK) $401  621
SE Oklahoma State 410  521
East Central 221  631
SW Oklahoma State 122  422
NW Oklahoma State 122  323
Northeastern State 050  290
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Smoky Mountain Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Maryville $201  523
Carson–Newman 311  621
Tusculum 211  611
King 121  271
Lincoln Memorial 131  471
Milligan 013  224
East Tennessee Teachers 012  142
  • $ Conference champion
1931 South Dakota Intercollegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Northern State $301  422
Yankton 312  423
Southern Normal 520  540
Sioux Falls 221  331
Huron 114  124
Augustana (SD) 220  250
South Dakota Mines 230  250
Dakota Wesleyan 231  261
Spearfish 030  150
Eastern Normal 031  031
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Southern California Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Caltech $510  621
Whittier 410  630
Occidental 320  341
Redlands 331  431
San Diego State 221  532
Pomona 230  260
La Verne 130  431
Santa Barbara State 050  151
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Southwestern Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Prairie View $      
  • $ Conference champion
1931 Texas Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Howard Payne +410  620
Simmons (TX) +410  650
Austin 320  351
Southwestern (TX) 230  460
St. Edward's 131  151
Trinity (TX) 041  261
  • + Conference co-champions
1931 Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Eastern Division
North Texas State Teachers x$400  830
Texas A&I 400  810
Sam Houston State 320  450
Southwest Texas State 230  440
East Texas State 140  360
Stephen F. Austin 050  170
Western Division
Daniel Baker x410  540
Abilene Christian 320  450
West Texas State 220  630
McMurry 130  260
Sul Ross 040  260
Championship: North Texas State Teachers 32, Daniel Baker 13
  • $ Conference champion
  • x Division champion/co-champions
  • y Championship game participant
1931 Tri-State Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Geneva $300  622
Waynesburg 210  332
Thiel 210  450
Bethany (WV) 020  160
Westminster (PA) 030  360
  • $ Conference champion

Dickinson System

The AP sportswriters' poll would not begin continuously until 1936. [13] (although, the first time was a one instance publishing in 1934 [14] ) Frank G. Dickinson, an economics professor at the University of Illinois, had invented the Dickinson System to rank colleges based upon their records and the strength of their opposition.

The system was originally designed to rank teams in the Big Nine (later the Big Ten) conference. Chicago clothing manufacturer Jack Rissman then persuaded Dickinson to rank the nation's teams under the system, and awarded the Rissman Trophy to the winning university. [15]

The system awarded 30 points for a win over a "strong team", and 20 for a win over a "weak team". Losses were awarded points (15 for loss to a strong team, 10 for loss to a weak team). Ties were treated as half a win and half a loss (22.5 for a tie with a strong team, 15 for a tie with a weak team). An average was then derived by dividing the points by games played. [16]

Final Dickinson rankings

Although Tulane was unbeaten and untied (11–0), it was second to the USC with a 9–1 record. [17]

RankTeamRecordRating
1 USC 9–126.25
2 Tulane 11–024.85
3 Tennessee 8–0–123.10
4 Northwestern 7–1–122.45
5 Saint Mary's 7–122.23
6 Georgia 8–221.25
7 Harvard 7–119.40
8 Yale 5–1–220.44
9 Pittsburgh 8–117.50
10 Purdue 7–116.58
11 Notre Dame 8–2–116.17

Statistical leaders

See also

Related Research Articles

The 1967 NCAA University Division football season was the last one in which college football's champion was crowned before the bowl games. During the 20th century, the NCAA had no playoff for the major college football teams in the University Division, later known as Division I-A and now as the Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).

In the 1968 NCAA University Division football season, the system of "polls and bowls" changed. The Associated Press returned to its pre-1961 system of ranking the Top 20 rather than the Top 10, and voted on the national champion after the bowl games, rather than before. During the 20th century, the NCAA had no playoff for the major college football teams in the University Division, later known as Division I-A.

The 1926 college football season was the first in which an attempt was made to recognize a national champion after the season.

The 1927 college football season ended with the Illini of the University of Illinois (7–0–1) being recognized as champion under the Dickinson System. At season's end, the Rissler Cup was awarded to the team that finished first in the "Dickinson ratings", which considered strength of schedule, in that a win, loss or tie against a "strong" opponent was worth more than one against a lesser team, and the results were averaged.

The 1928 football season have both the USC Trojans and the Georgia Tech Golden Tornado claim national championships. USC was recognized as champions under the Dickinson System, but the Rose Bowl was contested between the No. 2 and No. 3 teams, California and Georgia Tech. The game was decided by a safety scored after Roy "Wrong Way" Riegels ran 65 yards in the wrong direction. Vance Maree blocked the ensuing punt which gave Georgia Tech a safety deciding the 8–7 win.

The 1929 college football season saw a number of unbeaten and untied teams. Purdue, Tulane, Notre Dame and Pittsburgh all finished the regular season with wins over all their opponents. Notre Dame was recognized as national champion under the Dickinson System and by a United Press writer while Pitt was considered a national champion by several others due to Pitt possessing a greater scoring differential over the two teams' only common regular season opponent. Following the season, Pitt traveled to Pasadena to meet USC in the Rose Bowl, at that time the only postseason college football game and held between the perceived best teams of east and west. Despite Pitt's losing 47–14 to the Trojans, as bowls were still considered exhibitions by many, college football historian Parke H. Davis, whose national championship selections are recognized by the official NCAA records book, named the Panthers as that season's national champion while several other retroactive selectors recognized by the NCAA records book have selected Notre Dame. Both Notre Dame and Pitt claim a national championship for the 1929 season and both are recognized in the NCAA Records Book and by College Football Data Warehouse.

The 1930 college football season saw Notre Dame repeat as national champion under the Dickinson System, and a post-season Rose Bowl matchup between two unbeaten (9–0) teams, Washington State and Alabama, ranked No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. Alabama won the Pasadena contest, 24–0.

1932 college football season

The 1932 college football season saw the Michigan Wolverines win the Knute Rockne Memorial Trophy as national champion under the Dickinson System. Because the "Big Nine" conference didn't permit its teams to play in the postseason, however, the Wolverines were not able to accept a bid to the Rose Bowl. As such, the Pasadena game matched the No. 2 and No. 3 teams, USC and Pittsburgh, with the USC Trojans winning the East-West matchup 35–0.

The 1933 college football season saw the Michigan Wolverines repeat as winners of the Knute Rockne Memorial Trophy as national champion under the Dickinson System.

The 1934 college football season was the 66th season of college football in the United States. Two New Year's Day bowl games were initiated to rival the Rose Bowl Game. On February 15, Warren V. Miller and Joseph M. Cousins organized the New Orleans Mid-Winter Sports Association and by October, the group had enough funds to sponsor the Sugar Bowl. Meanwhile, W. Keith Phillips and the Greater Miami Athletic Club worked in November at a January 1 game for Florida, and the Orange Bowl was created.

The 1935 college football season was the last one before the Associated Press writers' poll was used in selecting the national champion. The Williamson System, calculated by Paul O. Williamson out of New Orleans, deemed Texas Christian University (TCU) as the best in the nation. The Dickinson System, consisting of the calculations of University of Illinois Professor Frank Dickinson, crowned Southern Methodist University (SMU) as the best in the nation. A poll of newspaper writers, taken at year's end—by United Press rather than the AP—concluded that Minnesota was the best in the nation.

The 1936 college football season was the first in which the Associated Press writers' poll selected a national champion. The first AP poll, taken of 35 writers, was released on October 20, 1936. Each writer listed his choice for the top ten teams, and points were tallied based on 10 for first place, 9 for second, etc., and the AP then ranked the twenty teams with the highest number of points. In the first poll, Minnesota received 32 first place votes, and 3 votes for an additional 25 points, for a total of 345 altogether.

1924 college football season

The 1924 college football season was the year of the Four Horsemen as the Notre Dame team, coached by Knute Rockne, won all of its games, including the Rose Bowl, to be acclaimed as the best team in the nation. Notre Dame and Stanford were both unbeaten at season's end, with the Fighting Irish winning the Rose Bowl contest 27–10. The Penn Quakers were retroactively awarded a national championship by Parke H. Davis.

1923 college football season

The 1923 college football season saw several teams finish their seasons unbeaten and untied. As such, numerous schools claim a national championship for the 1923 season. Illinois and Michigan, both members of what is now the Big Ten Conference, finished with records of 8–0 and were selected as national champion by multiple selectors. Illinois featured break-out star Red Grange. Ivy League teams Yale and Cornell also had undefeated seasons.

The 1949 college football season finished with four teams that were unbeaten and untied-- Notre Dame, Oklahoma, California, and Army had won all their games at season's end. Notre Dame, however, was the overwhelming choice for national champion in the AP Poll, with 172 of 208 first place votes. The Fighting Irish did not participate in the New Year's Day bowl games, which were played on January 2, 1950.

The 1948 college football season finished with two unbeaten and untied teams; Michigan and Clemson. Michigan was the first place choice for the majority voters in the AP Poll, but didn't play in the postseason because of a no-repeat rule for Big Nine schools. Notre Dame, second in the AP Poll, tied USC 14–14 at the end of the regular season, but did not participate in any bowl per university policy at the time. Northwestern beat California 20–14 in the Rose Bowl, and Clemson defeated Missouri by a point in the Gator Bowl.

The 1947 college football season finished with Notre Dame, Michigan and Penn State all unbeaten and untied, but the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame were the first place choice for 107 of the 142 voters in the AP Poll, and repeated as national champions. Michigan went on to meet USC in the Rose Bowl and won 49–0, while Penn State was tied 13–13 by SMU in the Cotton Bowl Classic, and Notre Dame didn't participate in the postseason. An unofficial post bowl AP poll was conducted with Michigan and Notre Dame as the only options and Michigan won by a vote of 226 to 119.

The 1946 college football season finished with the Notre Dame Fighting Irish crowned as the national champion in the AP Poll, the Georgia Bulldogs recognized as national champion by the Williamson poll and United States Military Academy named as national champion in various other polls and rankings. The Delaware Fightin' Blue Hens were recognized by the AP as the small college national champion. Notre Dame and Army both won all of their games, with the exception of their November 9 meeting at New York's Yankee Stadium, where they had played to a 0–0 tie in a No. 1 vs No. 2 matchup regarded as a "Game of the Century". Neither team played in bowl game that season.

The 1938 college football season ended with the Horned Frogs of Texas Christian University (TCU) being named the nation's No. 1 team by 55 of the 77 voters in the final Associated Press writers' poll in early December. Tennessee is also recognized as a national champion; both teams won every game.

The 1939 college football season concluded with the Aggies of The Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas being named as the national champions by the voters in the Associated Press writers' poll.

References

  1. 2012 NCAA Football Records (PDF). The National Collegiate Athletic Association. 2012. pp. 69–73. Retrieved March 4, 2013.
  2. USC Sports Information Office (2008). 2008 USC Football Media Guide (PDF). University of Southern California. pp. 119–124. Retrieved 2009-06-14.
  3. Borghetti, E.J.; Nestor, Mendy; Welsh, Celeste, eds. (2008). 2008 Pitt Football Media Guide (PDF). Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh. pp. 16, 156.
  4. "1931 National Championships". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved March 4, 2013.
  5. "Moore Stars For Purdue", Logansport (Ind.) Press, October 4, 1931, p6
  6. "NORTHWESTERN AND NOTRE DAME BATTLE TO DRAW", Waterloo (Iowa) Daily Courier October 11, 1931, p15
  7. "97–Yard Run On Kick-off Defeats NYU", Syracuse Herald, November 8, 1931, p12
  8. "It Can Be Done!", Kansas City Star, November 22, 1931, pB-1
  9. "Army Mule Too Fast for Notre Dame", Syracuse Herald, November 29, 1931, pXX-1
  10. "Pass Play Is Boomerang to Northwestern", Syhracuse Herald, November 29, 1931, pXX-1
  11. "Southern California Wins From Tulane", San Antonio Express, January 2, 1932, p8
  12. Quirk, James (2004). The Ultimate Guide to College Football: Rankings, Records, and Scores of the Major Teams and Conferences. Champaign, Illinois: University of Illinois Press. pp. 369–371. ISBN   025207226X.
  13. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-04-17. Retrieved 2009-01-06.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-02-13. Retrieved 2009-12-29.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  15. Herschel Nissenson Tales From College Football's Sidelines (Sports Publishing LLC, 2001), p93.
  16. "The Dickinson system awards 30 points for a victory over a strong team, and 20 for victory over a weak team. Defeats count half as much as victories, and ties are considered as games half won and half lost. Dividing this total by the number of games played gives the final rating, "ILLINOIS BEST FOOTBALL TEAM OF YEAR", The Syracuse Herald, Dec. 4, 1927, p23
  17. "Dickinson Rating Gives U.S.C. Title", San Antonio Express, December 13, 1931, p12
  18. http://library.la84.org/SportsLibrary/CFHSN/CFHSNv02/CFHSNv02n2f.pdf%5B%5D