In American football, a spiral is the continuous lateral rotation of the football following its release from the hand of a passeror foot of a punter.
American football, referred to as football in the United States and Canada and also known as gridiron, is a team sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectangular field with goalposts at each end. The offense, which is the team controlling the oval-shaped football, attempts to advance down the field by running with or passing the ball, while the defense, which is the team without control of the ball, aims to stop the offense's advance and aims to take control of the ball for themselves. The offense must advance at least ten yards in four downs, or plays, and otherwise they turn over the football to the defense; if the offense succeeds in advancing ten yards or more, they are given a new set of four downs. Points are primarily scored by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone for a touchdown or kicking the ball through the opponent's goalposts for a field goal. The team with the most points at the end of a game wins.
In several forms of football a forward pass is a throwing of the ball in the direction that the offensive team is trying to move, towards the defensive team's goal line. The forward pass is one of the main distinguishers between gridiron football in which the play is legal and widespread, and rugby football from which the North American games evolved, in which the play is illegal.
Pop Warner is credited for teaching his players both the spiral punt and the spiral pass.
The development of the forward pass is traced to Eddie Cochems and Bradbury Robinson at St. Louis. Howard R. Reiter also claimed to develop the overhand forward pass.
Edward Bulwer Cochems was an American football player and coach. He played football for the University of Wisconsin from 1898 to 1901 and was the head football coach at North Dakota State (1902–1903), Clemson (1905), Saint Louis University (1906–1908), and Maine (1914). During his three years at St. Louis, he was the first football coach to build an offense around the forward pass, which became a legal play in the 1906 college football season. Using the forward pass, Cochems' 1906 team compiled an undefeated 11–0 record, led the nation in scoring, and outscored opponents by a combined score of 407 to 11. He is considered by some to be the "father of the forward pass" in American football.
Bradbury Norton Robinson, Jr. was a pioneering American football player, physician, nutritionist, conservationist and local politician. He played college football at the University of Wisconsin in 1903 and at Saint Louis University from 1904 to 1907. In 1904, through personal connections to Wisconsin governor Robert M. La Follette, Sr. and his wife, Belle Case, Robinson learned of calls for reforms to the game of football from President Theodore Roosevelt, and began to develop tactics for passing. After moving to Saint Louis University, Robinson threw the first legal forward pass in the history of American football on September 5, 1906, at a game at Carroll College in Waukesha, Wisconsin. He became the sport's first triple threat man, excelling at running, passing, and kicking. He was also a member of St. Louis' "Olympic World's Champions" football team in 1904.
Howard Roland "Bosey" Reiter was an All-American football player, coach and athletic director. He was selected for the 1899 College Football All-America Team and played professional football as a player coach for the Philadelphia Athletics of the first National Football League in 1902. He was the head football coach at Wesleyan University from 1903 to 1909 and at Lehigh University from 1910 to 1911. Reiter has been credited by some with the development of the overhand spiral forward pass, which he claimed to have developed while playing for the Athletics in 1902.
Alex Moffat invented the spiral punt, described by one writer as "a dramatic change from the traditional end-over-end kicks."He also invented the drop kick.
Alexander Moffat was an American football player, coach and official. He played college football at Princeton University from 1882 to 1884 and was known as one of the greatest kickers in 19th century football. After his playing career ended, he remained active in the development of the game as a coach and founding member of football's rules committee. He was reported to have held a place in Princeton athletic history similar to that held by Walter Camp at Yale. Moffat was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1971.
A drop kick is a type of kick in various codes of football. It involves a player dropping the ball and then kicking it when it bounces off the ground.
Canadian football is a sport played in Canada in which two teams of 12 players each compete for territorial control of a field of play 110 yards (101 m) long and 65 yards (59 m) wide attempting to advance a pointed oval-shaped ball into the opposing team's scoring area.
A quarterback is a position in American and Canadian football. Quarterbacks are members of the offensive team and line up directly behind the offensive line. In modern American football, the quarterback is usually considered the leader of the offensive team, and is often responsible for calling the play in the huddle. The quarterback also touches the ball on almost every offensive play, and is the offensive player that almost always throws forward passes.
Amos Alonzo Stagg was an American athlete and college coach in multiple sports, primarily American football. He served as the head football coach at the International Young Men's Christian Association Training School (1890–1891), the University of Chicago (1892–1932), and the College of the Pacific (1933–1946), compiling a career college football record of 314–199–35. His Chicago Maroons teams of 1905 and 1913 have been recognized as national champions. He was also the head basketball coach for one season at the University of Chicago (1920–1921), and the head baseball coach there for 19 seasons.
Gridiron football, also known as North American football or simply football, is a football sport primarily played in the United States and Canada. American football, which uses 11-player teams, is the form played in the United States and the best known form of gridiron football worldwide, while Canadian football, featuring 12-player teams, predominates in Canada. Other derivative varieties include indoor football, football for smaller teams, and informal games such as touch and flag football. Football is played at professional, collegiate, semi-professional, and amateur levels.
In gridiron football, an onside kick is a kickoff deliberately kicked short. On most kickoffs, the kicking team concedes possession of the ball and tries to kick it as far as possible from its own goal. In an onside kick, however, the kicking team kicks short in hopes of regaining possession of the ball before the receiving team can control it.
A punter (P) in American or Canadian football is a special teams player who receives the snapped ball directly from the line of scrimmage and then punts (kicks) the football to the opposing team so as to limit any field position advantage. This generally happens on a fourth down in American football and a third down in Canadian football. Punters may also occasionally take part in fake punts in those same situations, when they throw or run the football instead of punting.
The punt kick is a common style of kicking in Australian rules football. It is a kick where the ball is dropped from the players' hands and kicked slightly off the longer center line of the ball before it hits the ground. It is the primary means of kicking the ball in Australian football and is similar to punts used tactically in other football codes, such as American and Canadian football.
In American football and Canadian football, the holder is the player who receives the snap from the long snapper during field goal or extra point attempts made by the placekicker. The holder is set on one knee eight yards behind the line-of-scrimmage. Before the play begins he places the hand which is closest to the place kicker on the ground in a location designated by the kickers foot, with his forward hand ready to receive the snap. After receiving the snap, the holder will place the football on the turf, or block, ideally with the laces facing the uprights and the ball accurately placed where the back hand was initially, then balancing the ball with one or two fingers until the ball is kicked.
Saverio Giovanni "Sav" Rocca is a retired Australian professional sportsman. He played Australian rules football for Collingwood and North Melbourne in the Australian Football League, and then switched to playing American football as a punter for the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins in the National Football League.
In gridiron football, a triple-threat man is a player who excels at all three of the skills of running, passing, and kicking. In modern usage, such a player would be referred to as a utility player.
In college football, the Flea Kicker was a notable play executed by the Nebraska Cornhuskers against the Missouri Tigers on November 8, 1997 that sent the game into overtime and resulted in a win for the Cornhuskers who went on to share the NCAA Division I-A National Championship with the Michigan Wolverines. The final minutes of the game were seen by many people on ABC, after other regional games ended.
Paul Lansing Veeder was an All-American football player for Yale University. Veeder played halfback, fullback, quarterback and punter for the Yale Bulldogs from 1904–1906 and was selected as an All-American in 1906.
In American and Canadian football, a punt is a kick performed by dropping the ball from the hands and then kicking the ball before it hits the ground. The most common use of this tactic is to punt the ball downfield to the opposing team, usually on the final down, with the hope of giving the receiving team a field position that is more advantageous to the kicking team when possession changes. The result of a typical punt, barring any penalties or extraordinary circumstances, is a first down for the receiving team. A punt is not to be confused with a drop kick, a kick after the ball hits the ground, now rare in both American and Canadian football.
The 1883 Princeton Tigers football team represented the College of New Jersey, then more commonly known as Princeton College, in the 1883 college football season. The team finished with a 7–1 record and outscored opponents 238 to 26, using the new scoring rules introduced by Walter Camp. The Tigers won their first seven games before losing the final game of the season to Yale in New York.
Herman Peter Hauser was a United States Native American football player. He played for the Haskell Indians football team from 1904 to 1905 and for the Carlisle Indians football team from 1906 to 1910 and was selected as a consensus first-team fullback on the 1907 College Football All-America Team. He was a multi-talented player who ran with the ball, handled place-kicking and punt returns, and has been credited as the first player in American football to throw a spiral pass.
The early history of American football can be traced to early versions of rugby football and association football. Both games have their origin in varieties of football played in Britain in the mid–19th century, in which a football is kicked at a goal or run over a line, which in turn were based on the varieties of English public school football games.