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December 06, 1964 - Image 6

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1964-12-06

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.



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Bowl- College





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UCK VETZNER Back in the good old days, when
cigars cost five cents and New
A a time, many, many Year's Day in Pasadena, Calif. was
there n wereno samh celebrated with bicycle races, no
>st-season bowl games.;one ever heard of bowl games.
>e hard to believe, but Then in 1901 some naive young
al truth, even though businessmen decided that Pasa-
here are almost as dena's January 1 Tournament of
games as football Roses carnival needed some new
iy there are over 25 life. The citizenry was naturally
s, named for subjects indignant when James Wagner,
n the military to mil- who was president of the affair,
i the, Missile Bowl at announced that on the first day
. to the Bluebonnet of 1902, the University of Michi-
ston. gan would engage Stanford in a
as the games become match to prove superiority on the
as blue blazers and gridiron.

that prediction. Although a profit
of over $4000 was netted, the 1902
Rose Bowl appeareq to be the
Newspaper critics blasted the
event as "slow and tedious," and
the next year the celebration was
highlighted by chariot races.
But Roman customs didn't seem
to catch on in California, espe-
cially after an accident which
sent a chariot driver, the Tourna-
ment president, pummeling down
under the kicking feet of the
Once again officials went scur-
rying for a new attraction and this
time football again acted as a life
Second Try
In 1916 Brown faced Washing-
ton State in the second New
Year's Dayfootball game.
Although the college sport had
achieved new prestige in the in-

tervening 14 years, the parade re-
mained the highlight of the day.
In fact, the Brown players watch-
ed the procession before heading
to the locker room for the game.
Washington State won the con-
test and bonuses to boot as the
Cougars had bet on themselves
as underdogs. The financial situ-
ation for the Tournament was not
as rosy however. Unbelievably, it
snowed on December 30, and most
fans decided to stay home rather
than venture out in the presence
of such foreign matter..
Nevertheless, a game was again
played in 1917 and it appeared as
if football would become a regu-
lar part of the festivities.
Soldier Bowl
Then America entered the war,
and it appeared that the game
would have to be at least tem-
porarily halted. But officials were
forgetting that Uncle Sam's boys

still need recreation and are cap-
able of playing some pretty good
The next two years featured
some of the country's lesser known
teams, but plenty of action. In
1918 the Mare Island Marines
downed the Camp Lewis Army
team and the following year some
sailors named Paddy Driscoll and
George Halas from the Great
Lakes Navy Base topped the Ma-
rines in 25 degree weather.- %
Harvard, the team which was
synonomous with college football
to all America, traveled over 3000
miles to play in the 1920 game.
This put the Rose Bowl over the
top and made people in the East.
learn how New Year's Day was
celebrated out West. For the first
time, the game received much at-
tention all over the country.
The contest was not actually,
termed the "Rose Bowl" until 1923

when a 52,000 seat stadium was.
erected on an old rubbish dump.
in an area known as Arroyo Seco,
Spanish for dry wash. This mnight,
not make sense, but neither did,
the word bowl for a horseshoe
shaped arena.
Nevertheless, the name caught
on to such an extent that a post
season game played in Atlantic
City's indoor convention center is
known as the Liberty Bowl.
The new structure in Pasadena
was necessary though, as the con-
test had become a national at-
traction and needed a home of its
own. The game was being played:
In old Tournament Park which ac-
commodated only 30,000 people
and. extra seats were provided by'
renting bleachers from a circus.
Even Bigger
The stadium was later expanded
to hold over 100,000 spectators and'
only one Rose Bowl game was not

,n r

loafers, there remains
season skirmish capable
sting the interest of ev-
ho's heard of the. sport
ame, of course, is the
1 - the granddaddy of

Too Big
Wagner felt that Pasadena had
outgrown impromptu athletic con-"
tests and a Mexican contest known
as "'Tourney of the Rings."
Many thought a football game
'would be poorly attended, but an
overflow crowd made shambles of

played there after its completion.
The bombing of nearby Pearl Har-
bor, only a month before the 1942
game sent the contest across the
continent to Durham, N.C., where
Duke acted as the host team.
But it's the Rose Bowl stadium
in Pasadena that is permanently
and deeply associated with the ex-
citing history of the game.
In 1926 Alabama faced Wash-
ington in a battle that has since
been called one of the 10 great-
est football games of all time. At
halftime, the Huskies, led by All-
American George Wilson, were on!
top 12-0. But Wilson would not be
playing in the second half.
Through no accident, as the play
was extremely rough, Wilson had
been knocked unconscious twice,
and the second KO put him out
of the line-up.
Come Back
In the third quarter, Johnny
Mack Brown and the Crimson
Tide came roaring back with 20
points and were threatening to
score again late in the fourth
quarter. It was obvious only Wil-
son could save the Huskies from"
disaster. He was sent back into
the game and promptly, led the
team on an 88 yard scoring march
to make the final score of the
game 20-19 with Alabama victor-
Perhaps the most famous mo-
ment in all Rose Bowl history
came in 1929 when Roy Riegels

string quarterback Doyle Nave. His
first pass to end "Antelope" Al
Krueger moved the ball to the
21. Nave followed with a nine
yarder and several flat passes
which put the pigskin inside the
10 with under a minute left. Then
Nave and Krueger, who were also
off the field friends, used a play
they had spent weeks of their
own time preparing. The home
made "buttonhook shift" pass
worked and the Trojans were vic-
torious with 40 seconds remain-
ing on the scoreboard clock.
The Greatest
Naturally not all the games had
a story book ending, but they all
had the tinsel coating as one of
sports greatest attractions - the
best in the West versus a top
flight outfit from some other part
of the country-usually the South.
But this all changed in 1947
when the Pacific Coast Confer-
ence signed a contract with the
Big Ten-then the Big Nine -
agreeing that the champions of
the two leagues would meet on
New Year's Day.
The fans angrily denounced the
contract as a "shotgun marriage,"
claiming they were being cheated
out of seeing the best team pos-
sible. They were especially upset
because that year Army was con-
sidered one of the best teams of
all time and the Military Acad-
emy even wanted to make the trip

~tke 'tA
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committed the mental error that
made Fred Merkle and Douglas
Corrigan look like geniuses.
Riegels achieved a permanent
niche in football folklore by run-
ning the wrong way with the ball.
The feat occurred in the second.
quarter of the California-Georgia
Tech game., A Tech player was hit.
on his own 20 and the ball was
jarred loose. Riegels, Cal's roving
center, grabbed the pigskin and
as he explained it, "I just bounc-.
ed out with the ball, saw a pair
of goal posts and headed for
Actually the Golden Bear line-
man started the right way, but'
suddenly- changed his mind and'
headed for the other end of the
field at' full speed. Hot in pursuit
vas Cal's Benny Loin who tried
to tell Riegels that he was making
a mistake.
Riegels had just gotten across
pay dirt when Lom caught him
and dragged him back out to the
one where an army of Yellowjack-
et players, arriving a yard and a
second too late, quickly tackled
The Real Tragedy
But the real tragedy came on
the next play when Cal tried to
punt the ball out of their own
territory. It was blocked, result-
ing in a safety and an 8-7 win for
The 1939 game was another that
could only be dreamed up in Hol-
lywood. Undefeated, Duke was
leading Southern Cal 3-0 with
only two minutes to go. Then
with the ball on the Blue Devil
34, the USC coach inserted fourth

Off the Spot
But the game that year took
the Western Conference off the
spot. Underdog Illinois slammed
UCLA 45-14, proving that Mid-
western football was of a pretty
high calibre, too.
In subsequent years, the Big
Ten has continued to dominate the
series and the Pasadena classic is
more popular than ever. Even
when the contract was tempor-
arily not in effect during the 1960
and 1961 seasons, the Rose Bowl
committee still chose representa-
tives from the Big Ten.
And the game still produces its
share of thrills - like the 1962
match which pitted USC against
Wisconsin--the number one and
two teams in the country. The
valiant struggle of Badger quar-
terback Ron VanderKelen will be
remembered along with the feats
of Riegel and Nave.
Long Journey
The Rose Bowl has come a long
way since 1902 when experts were
sure that 8000 fans would not
show up. The first clash was call-
ed "Wagner's Folly," but they
laughed at Fulton, too.
The tickets then cost under a
dollar and that was considered
high. Nowadays ticket scalpers
can make their living just from
this game alone. This -year the
game will be a sellout-as usual-
and millions will watch the game
on national television or listen on
the radio.
Last year the game received
one of the highest TV ratings.
And when something draws as
well as the Beatles, it's got to be

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