1948 college football season

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The 1948 college football season finished with two unbeaten and untied teams; Michigan and Clemson. Michigan was the first place choice for the majority (192 of the 333) 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.

Contents

Air travel to away games (as opposed to rail travel) became increasingly popular with college football programs in the late 1940s. [2]

The NCAA began permitting the use of small 1-inch rubber "tees" (not the same tee used for kickoffs) for extra point and field goal attempts beginning this year; they were outlawed in 1989. [3]

Conference and program changes

Conference changes

Membership changes

School1947 Conference1948 Conference
Bradley Braves Independent Missouri Valley
Colorado Buffaloes Skyline (Mountain States) Big Seven (MVIAA)
Eastern Kentucky State Colonels KIAC Ohio Valley
Evansville Purple Aces Independent Ohio Valley
Louisville Cardinals KIAC Ohio Valley
Morehead State Eagles KIAC Ohio Valley
Murray State Racers KIAC Ohio Valley
Western Kentucky State Hilltoppers KIAC Ohio Valley

September

The Associated Press did not poll the writers until the fourth week of the season. Among the five teams that had been ranked highest in 1947, Notre Dame, Michigan, SMU, Penn State, Texas began play on September 25. Notre Dame edged Purdue 28–27, Michigan won at Michigan State, 13–7, and SMU won at Pittsburgh, 33–14. The Texas Longhorns lost at North Carolina, 34–7. Northwestern beat UCLA, in Los Angeles, 19–0. In Baltimore, California beat Navy, 21–7. Army beat visiting Villanova 28–0.

October

On October 2 In Pittsburgh, Notre Dame shut out Pitt, 40–0, while in Dallas, SMU defeated Texas Tech 41–6. Penn State beat Bucknell 35–0, Michigan beat Oregon 14–0. North Carolina won at Georgia 21–14. Army beat Lafayette 54–7. Northwestern beat Purdue 21–0. When the first poll was issued, Notre Dame had fewer first place votes than North Carolina (50 vs. 55), but ten more points overall (1,200 to 1,190) Northwestern was third, followed by SMU and Army. Though unbeaten, Michigan was ranked 7th, after Georgia Tech.

On October 9 No. 1 Notre Dame beat Michigan State 26–7. No. 2 North Carolina won at Wake Forest, 28–6, and was ranked first in the next poll. No. 3 Northwestern beat No. 8 Minnesota 19–16. No. 4 SMU lost at Missouri, 20–14. No. 5 Army won at Illinois, 26–21. No. 7 Michigan, which had won at No. 15 Purdue, 40–0, rose to 4th.

October 16 No. 1 North Carolina beat N.C. State 14–0, but dropped to third in the next poll. No. 2 Notre Dame won at Nebraska 44–13. In Ann Arbor, Michigan, No. 3 Northwestern faced Big Nine rival No. 4 Michigan, and the home team Wolverines won 28–0. No. 5 Army defeated Harvard 20–7. Michigan moved up to first place in the next poll, and No. 6 California (which beat Oregon State 42–0) replaced Northwestern in the Top Five.

October 23 In Minneapolis, No. 1 Michigan beat No. 13 Minnesota 27–14, and No. 2 Notre Dame won at Iowa 27–12. No. 3 North Carolina beat visiting LSU 34–7. In Seattle, No. 4 California blanked Washington 21–0, and No. 5 Army won at No. 12 Cornell 27–6.

October 30 No. 1 Michigan beat Illinois 28–20, while in Baltimore, No. 2 Notre Dame beat Navy 41–7. No. 3 North Carolina won at Tennessee 14–7. In Los Angeles, No. 4 California beat USC, 13–7. No. 5 Army beat Virginia Tech 49–7. In the next poll, Notre Dame was ranked at the new number one.

November

November 6 No. 1 Notre Dame won at Indiana 42–6. No. 2 Michigan beat visiting Navy 35–0. No. 3 North Carolina was tied by William & Mary, 7–7. No. 4 Army defeated Stanford at Yankee Stadium in New York, 43–0, while No. 5 California beat visiting UCLA 28–13. Replacing North Carolina in the Top Five was No. 14 Penn State, which had shut out Penn in Philadelphia, 13–0.

November 13 No. 1 Michigan beat Indiana 54–0. No. 2 Notre Dame beat No. 8 Northwestern 12–7. No. 3 Army won at Pennsylvania 26–20. No. 4 California beat Washington State 44–14. No. 5 Penn State beat Temple 47–0, but still dropped in the next poll. It was replaced by No. 6 North Carolina, which returned after a win at Maryland 49–20.

November 20 No. 1 Michigan closed its season with a 13–3 win at No. 18 Ohio State. No. 2 Notre Dame and No. 3 Army were both idle. No. 4 California beat Stanford 7–6. No. 5 North Carolina beat Duke 20–0.

November 27 No. 1 Michigan, which had completed its season, had 105 of 190 first place votes. No. 2 Notre Dame defeated Washington 46–0. The annual Army–Navy Game in Philadelphia pitted unbeaten (8–0–0) and No. 3 Army against winless (0–8–0) Navy, and 102,000 fans turned out to watch the mismatch, including President Truman. It was a surprise when the Midshipmen scored first, but Army went ahead 21–14 after three quarters. In the fourth quarter, Navy pushed the Cadets back to their own goal line, and took the punt at midfield. In six plays, Navy drove down to the four yard line, and Bill Hawkins crashed into the end zone to make it 21–20. Roger Drew added the point after to ruin Army's perfect record, 21–21. [4] No. 4 North Carolina won at Virginia 34–12, and No. 5 California had finished its season. The final poll was released on November 29, although some colleges had not completed their schedules.

On December 4, No. 2 Notre Dame‘s perfect record was compromised in Los Angeles with a 14–14 tie against unranked USC.

Conference standings

Major conference standings

1948 Big Nine Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 1 Michigan $600  900
No. 7 Northwestern 510  820
No. 16 Minnesota 520  720
Ohio State 330  630
Iowa 240  450
Purdue 240  360
Indiana 240  270
Illinois 250  360
Wisconsin 150  270
  • $ Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll
1948 Big Seven Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 5 Oklahoma $500  1010
Missouri 510  830
Kansas 420  730
Colorado 230  360
Iowa State 240  460
Nebraska 240  280
Kansas State 060  190
  • $ Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll
1948 Border Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Texas Tech $500  730
Texas Mines 411  821
Arizona 320  650
Arizona State 320  550
Hardin–Simmons 321  623
West Texas State 230  650
Arizona State–Flagstaff 120  450
New Mexico 160  200
New Mexico A&M 040  370
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Middle Three Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Rutgers $200  720
Lafayette $110  720
Lehigh 020  540
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Missouri Valley Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Oklahoma A&M $200  640
Wichita 211  541
Drake 110  730
Tulsa 011  091
Saint Louis 020  470
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Pacific Coast Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 4 California ^ +600  1010
No. 9 Oregon +700  920
USC 420  631
Washington State 431  451
Stanford 340  460
Oregon State 232  543
Washington 251  271
UCLA 260  370
Idaho 150  360
Montana 030  370
  • + Conference co-champions
  • ^ – Selected as Rose Bowl representative
Rankings from AP Poll
1948 Rocky Mountain Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Colorado State–Greeley $300  440
Western State 210  640
Colorado College 120  ???
Colorado Mines 030  360
Montana State 000  270
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Skyline Six Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Utah $500  811
Colorado A&M 410  830
Denver 220  451
Utah State 230  560
BYU 130  560
Wyoming 050  450
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Southeastern Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 8 Georgia $600  920
No. 15 Ole Miss 610  810
No. 13 Tulane 510  910
No. 12 Vanderbilt 421  821
Georgia Tech 430  730
Alabama 441  641
Mississippi State 330  441
Tennessee 231  442
Kentucky 131  532
Florida 150  550
LSU 150  370
Auburn 070  181
  • $ Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll
1948 Southern Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 11 Clemson $500  1100
No. 3 North Carolina 401  911
VMI 510  630
No. 17 William & Mary 511  722
No. 20 Wake Forest 520  640
Maryland 420  640
Duke 321  432
Richmond 331  532
Washington and Lee 220  460
Furman 240  261
George Washington 240  460
Davidson 250  351
South Carolina 130  350
NC State 141  361
VPI 061  081
The Citadel 050  270
  • $ Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll
1948 Southwest Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 10 SMU $501  911
Texas 411  731
Baylor 321  632
Rice 321  541
Arkansas 240  550
TCU 141  451
Texas A&M 051  091
  • $ Conference champion
Rankings from AP Poll

Independents

1948 Eastern college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 6 Army     801
No. 19 Cornell     810
Penn State     711
Buffalo     611
Villanova     821
Brown     720
Dartmouth     620
Boston College     522
Pittsburgh     630
Penn     530
Franklin & Marshall     531
Harvard     440
Princeton     440
Columbia     450
Yale     450
Tufts     341
Colgate     360
Fordham     360
NYU     360
Temple     261
Duquesne     270
Carnegie Tech     170
Hofstra     062
Syracuse     180
Drexel     080
Rankings from AP Poll
1948 Midwestern college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
No. 2 Notre Dame     901
Bowling Green     801
Washington University     910
Ball State     620
Michigan State     622
Baldwin–Wallace     522
Detroit     630
Indiana State     440
Wabash     440
Wayne     440
Valparaiso     450
Toledo     560
Michigan State Normal     350
Central Michigan     360
Marquette     280
Rankings from AP Poll
1948 Southern college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Maryland State     810
Sewanee     611
Grambling     820
West Virginia     930
Western Maryland     520
Delaware     530
Virginia     531
Oklahoma City     451
Chattanooga     450
Georgetown     341
Miami (FL)     460
Marshall     271
Catholic University     170
Navy     081
Tampa       
1948 Western college football independents records
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Nevada     920
Santa Clara     721
Hawaii     741
Idaho State     611
Cal Poly San Dimas     640
Pepperdine     450
Saint Mary's     460
Loyola (CA)     351
La Verne     350
Portland     251
San Francisco     270

Minor conferences

ConferenceChampion(s)Record
California Collegiate Athletic Association San Jose State 5–0
Central Intercollegiate Athletics Association West Virginia State
Winston-Salem State
6–0
Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Kansas State Teachers (Emporia State)5–0
College Conference of Illinois Illinois Wesleyan 5–0
Dakota-Iowa Athletic Conference Buena Vista 3–0–1
Evergreen Conference Eastern Washington College
Puget Sound
5–1
Far Western Conference Chico State College
Southern Oregon College
3–1
Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Dubuque 5–0
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference Ottawa (KS) 6–0
Lone Star Conference Southwest Texas State Teachers 6–0
Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Alma 5–0
Mid-American Conference Miami (OH) 4–0
Midwest Collegiate Athletic Conference Ripon 6–0
Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Saint Thomas (MN) 5–0
Missouri Intercollegiate Athletic Association Northwest Missouri State
Southwest Missouri State
4–1
Nebraska College Conference Charon State
Wayne State (NE)
6–1
New Mexico Intercollegiate Conference Sul Ross State College 5–0
North Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Iowa State Teachers (Northern Iowa)5–0
North Dakota College Athletic Conference Minot State College
North Dakota Science
5–0
Ohio Athletic Conference Heidelberg 5–0
Ohio Valley Conference Murray State College 3–1
Oklahoma Collegiate Athletic Conference Central State College (OK)
Southeastern State College (OK)
4–1
Pacific Northwest Conference College of Idaho 5–1
Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Bloomsburg State Teachers
California State Teachers
6–0
Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Colorado State College 3–0
South Dakota Intercollegiate Conference Northern State Teachers (SD) 6–0
Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Occidental 4–0
Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Florida A&M College 6–0
Southwestern Athletic Conference Southern 7–0
State Teacher's College Conference of Minnesota Duluth State Teachers
Mankato State Teachers
St. Cloud State Teachers
4–1
Texas Collegiate Athletic Conference McMurry (TX) 4–1
Wisconsin State Teachers College Conference Eau Claire State Teachers 5–1

Minor conference standings

1948 Badger-Illini Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Lewis +510  620
Northwestern (WI) +510  620
Aurora 420  520
Mission House 331  341
Milton 230  340
Wisconsin Tech 130  150
Wisconsin–Extension 151  151
Concordia (IL) 140  150
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 California Collegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
San Jose State $500  930
Pacific 410  712
Santa Barbara 230  650
Fresno State 230  361
San Diego State 140  470
Cal Poly 140  350
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Central Intercollegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Emporia State $500  820
Fort Hays State 311  540
Southwestern (KS) 320  730
Washburn 221  351
Pittsburg State 140  262
St. Benedict's 050  090
Rockhurst 000  351
  • $ Conference champion
1948 College Conference of Illinois football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Illinois Wesleyan $500  730
Wheaton (IL) 410  620
Lake Forest 410  530
Millikin 330  360
Augustana (IL) 230  431
Illinois College 230  540
Carthage 230  440
North Central (IL) 140  170
Elmhurst 050  170
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Dakota-Iowa Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Buena Vista $301  431
Dakota Wesleyan 310  450
Huron 221  441
Westmar 221  261
Yankton 121  341
Sioux Falls 040  161
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Dixie Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Florida State $400  710
Mississippi College 210  450
Tampa 110  260
Stetson 130  270
Millsaps 030  231
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Evergreen Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Eastern Washington +510  810
Puget Sound +510  621
Pacific Lutheran 420  621
Whitworth 231  441
Central Washington 231  531
Western Washington 240  ???
Saint Martin's 060  ???
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 Far Western Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Chico State +310  530
Southern Oregon +310  550
San Francisco State 220  350
Humboldt State 130  630
Cal Aggies 130  260
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 Gulf States Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Mississippi Southern $400  730
Louisiana Tech 410  721
Southwestern Louisiana 320  631
Northwestern State 230  531
Louisiana College 130  280
Southeastern Louisiana 050  361
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Hoosier Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Hanover +600  620
Anderson (IN) +500  620
Indiana Central 420  440
Canterbury 132  242
Rose Poly 131  331
Manchester (IN) 131  161
Franklin (IN) 142  152
Earlham 040  080
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Eastern Illinois $400  730
Illinois State 310  720
Northern Illinois State 220  640
Western Illinois 130  440
Southern Illinois 040  260
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Ottawa $600  730
Bethany (KS) 510  630
College of Emporia 330  431
Kansas Wesleyan 330  540
Baker 330  450
Bethel (KS) 150  270
McPherson 060  080
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Lone Star Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Southwest Texas State $600  810
North Texas State 420  640
Stephen F. Austin 321  721
Trinity (TX) 222  622
Houston 330  560
East Texas State 141  361
Sam Houston State 060  091
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Alma $500  800
Kalamazoo 311  441
Hillsdale 221  621
Hope 230  530
Adrian 230  540
Albion 050  260
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Mid-American Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Miami (OH) $400  711
Western Michigan 310  630
Cincinnati 310  361
Ohio 230  360
Western Reserve 140  181
Butler 040  350
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
St. Thomas (MN) $500  430
Gustavus Adolphus 410  711
Macalester 410  620
Saint John's (MN) 320  620
Hamline 222  322
St. Olaf 221  341
Augsburg 032  132
Concordia (MN) 041  341
Saint Mary's (MN) 050  080
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Missouri College Athletic Union football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Missouri Valley $400  911
Culver–Stockton 310  450
Central Methodist 220  530
William Jewell 130  360
Tarkio 040  250
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Missouri Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
SW Missouri State +410  920
NW Missouri State +410  620
Missouri Mines 212  432
Kirksville State 221  432
SE Missouri State 032  072
Central Missouri State 041  072
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 Nebraska College Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Wayne State (NE) +610  810
Chadron State +610  710
Nebraska Wesleyan 520  630
Doane 420  540
Kearney State 330  530
Peru State 330  440
Hastings 150  270
York (NE) 050  260
Midland 060  0100
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 New Mexico Intercollegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Sul Ross $500  1010
Adams State 310  620
Eastern New Mexico 520  630
New Mexico Highlands 231  ???
New Mexico Teachers 231  341
New Mexico Military 230  450
Panhandle A&M 151  171
St. Michael's (NM) 031  051
  • $ Conference champion
1948 North Central Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Iowa State Teachers $500  730
South Dakota 410  730
North Dakota 330  370
South Dakota State 240  460
Morningside 240  360
Augustana (SD) 240  360
North Dakota State 240  370
  • $ Conference champion
1948 North State Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Appalachian State $701  811
Western Carolina 310  730
Catawba 520  541
Lenoir–Rhyne 521  631
High Point 431  532
Elon 341  451
Guilford 150  460
Atlantic Christian 160  270
East Carolina 060  090
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Ohio Valley Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Murray State $310  911
Evansville 310  530
Eastern Kentucky 220  830
Louisville 110  550
Western Kentucky 230  540
Morehead State 030  350
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Oklahoma Collegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
SE Oklahoma State +410  720
Central State (OK) +410  620
East Central 320  640
NW Oklahoma State 131  251
SW Oklahoma State 131  171
Northeastern State 140  270
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 Smoky Mountain Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Milligan *300  911
Emory and Henry 110  280
Carson–Newman 120  460
Tusculum 020  270
  • * – Milligan was suspended from title eligibility for using an ineligible player.
1948 South Dakota Intercollegiate Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Northern State $500  710
Southern State 430  530
South Dakota Mines 220  530
General Beadle 221  431
Huron 220  441
Yankton 230  341
Black Hills 130  270
Sioux Falls 031  161
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Southern California Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Occidental $400  900
Pomona 310  620
Whittier 220  640
Redlands 130  170
Caltech 040  160
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Southwestern Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Southern $700  1200
Texas College 520  830
Langston 520  730
Prairie View A&M 421  641
Samuel Huston 340  550
Arkansas AM&N 250  451
Bishop 151  271
Wiley 070  091
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Texas Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
McMurry $410  640
Abilene Christian 311  531
Hardin 311  451
Howard Payne 230  550
Southwestern (TX) 230  630
Austin 050  290
  • $ Conference champion
1948 Volunteer State Athletic Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
Austin Peay +200  820
Tennessee Tech +200  560
Milligan 100  911
Middle Tennessee 220  550
Union (TN) 130  370
Cumberland (TN) 030  360
  • + Conference co-champions
1948 Yankee Conference football standings
Conf  Overall
TeamW L T  W L T
New Hampshire $310  530
Connecticut 210  350
Vermont 110  431
UMass 111  341
Maine 120  430
Rhode Island State 130  241
  • $ Conference champion

Rankings

Bowl games

Bowl gameWinning teamLosing team
Rose Bowl No. 7 Northwestern 20No. 4 California 14
Sugar Bowl No. 5 Oklahoma 14No. 3 North Carolina 6
Orange Bowl Texas 41No. 8 Georgia 28
Cotton Bowl No. 10 SMU 21No. 9 Oregon 13
Sun Bowl West Virginia 21 Texas Mines 12
Gator Bowl No. 11 Clemson 24 Missouri 23
Tangerine Bowl Murray State 21 Sul Ross 21
Dixie Bowl Baylor 20No. 20 Wake Forest 7
Raisin Bowl Occidental 21 Colorado A&M 20
Harbor Bowl Villanova 27 Nevada 7
Salad Bowl Drake 14 Arizona 13
Delta Bowl No. 17 William & Mary 20 Oklahoma A&M 0
Shrine Bowl Hardin–Simmons 40 Ouachita Baptist 12
Camellia Bowl Hardin–Simmons 49 Wichita 12

See also

Related Research Articles

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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.

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 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 1944 college football season was played during the Second World War. The football team of the United States Military Academy, more popularly known as Army, was crowned as the nation's No. 1 team by 95 of the 121 writers who participated in the AP Poll.

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.

The 1955 college football season saw the Oklahoma Sooners win the national championship after going 10–0–0. Although the final poll was taken before the postseason bowl games, Oklahoma played against the nation's other unbeaten and untied (10–0–0) team, the Maryland Terrapins, at the Orange Bowl in Miami, and won 20–6.

The 1954 college football season saw three teams finish unbeaten and untied, with Ohio State Buckeyes and the UCLA Bruins sharing the national championship as the No. 1 picks of the AP Poll and the UPI Poll, respectively. Although the winners of the Big Ten and the Pacific conferences normally met in the Rose Bowl, a "no repeat" prevented the two champions from meeting. UCLA, which had been in the Rose Bowl earlier in the year, was replaced by conference runner-up USC.

The 1953 college football season finished with the Maryland Terrapins capturing the AP, INS, and UPI national championship after Notre Dame held the top spot for the first nine weeks. The No. 4 Oklahoma Sooners defeated Maryland in the Orange Bowl, but there was no further polling after the November 30 results were released. However, Notre Dame was selected as the National Champions by 10 other polls and the Oklahoma Sooners received first in two polls. However, despite the team receiving National Championship rings, the University of Notre Dame does not recognize this title due to their policy of only recognizing AP or coaches' poll titles during the polling era (1936–present). Maryland was also the first champion of the Atlantic Coast Conference, which had been formed earlier in 1953 by seven colleges formerly with the Southern Conference. The year 1953 also saw the Michigan State Spartans, previously an independent, join the Big Nine Conference, which then became the Big Ten; MSU won the conference title in that first year and was the conference representative to the Rose Bowl, which it won 28–20 over UCLA.

The 1951 college football season finished with seven unbeaten major college teams, of which five were unbeaten and untied. Ultimately, the Tennessee Volunteers were voted the best team by the Associated Press, followed by the Michigan State Spartans, with the Vols having a plurality of first place votes. Tennessee lost in the Sugar Bowl to the equally undefeated and untied No. 3 Maryland Terrapins, but the postseason games were not taken into account by the major polls. Tennessee, Maryland, Michigan State, and Illinois all claim national championships for 1951.

The 1950 college football season finished with the unbeaten and untied Oklahoma Sooners (9–0) being the consensus choice for national champion. On New Year's Day, however, the Sooners were upset by the Kentucky Wildcats in the Sugar Bowl. The Army Cadets, ranked No. 2 in the AP Poll, had been defeated in its final regular season game by 2–6 Navy, 14–2. However, the final poll had been issued on November 27, and the bowl games had no effect on Oklahoma's status as the No. 1 team.

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 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.

The 1941 college football regular season was the 73rd season of intercollegiate football in the United States. Competition included schools from the Big Ten Conference, the Pacific Coast Conference (PCC), the Southeastern Conference (SEC), the Big Six Conference, the Southern Conference, the Southwestern Conference, and numerous smaller conferences and independent programs.

The 1943 college football season concluded with the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame crowned as the nation's No. 1 team by a majority of the voters in the AP Poll, followed by the Iowa Pre-Flight Seahawks as the runner-up. For the third time in the history of the AP Poll, a team that had lost a game was named mythical national champion;. Notre Dame lost its final game of the season, a Chicago contest against the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. Along the way, however, the Fighting Irish had played one of the toughest college schedules ever, beating two No. 2 ranked teams and two No. 3 ranked teams. Purdue University would seemingly have a claim on the 1943 Championship as well as the only undefeated team playing a full schedule, but the Purdue athletic department has never pursued the claim.

References

  1. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-02-29. Retrieved 2009-01-19.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. "Grid teams use air travel more for game dates". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Oregon). Associated Press. November 5, 1948. p. 15.
  3. Litke, Jim (August 20, 1989). "They're Not All Kicking and Screaming Over the Absence of Tee". Los Angeles Times. Associate Press. Retrieved October 3, 2019. It was 1948 before vague rumblings about putting the foot back into the game convinced NCAA officials to allow the use of a 1-inch rubberized tee. Eleven years later, they widened the goal posts to 23-feet-5 from 18-5, and seven years after that, let the tee rise an inch.
  4. "Navy Deadlocks Mighty Army Eleven, 21 to 21", The Charleston (WV) Gazette, Nov. 28, 1948, p19