1870-1871 College Football Summary

The 'fever' of playing college football must have caught on as Columbia College played its very first game this year, losing by a 3-goal margin, 6-3 against Rutgers.

Another high-scoring game saw Rutgers falling to eventual No. 1 Princeton, 6-goals to 2.

This was the latter's lone win during a short two-game schedule; as it allowed Princeton to once again record 6 goals against its defense, losing 6-goals to 2.

Princeton played and won 3 games and would become the first college to repeat as national champion; as the school once again claimed the retroactive title 1870.

Teams played under what was called Association Football and would do so through covering the 1869/70-1876/77 seasons; where all goals scored were credited with just a single tally per score.

An early scoring rule this season was established; as the winner would be determined by the first team to register 6 goals.

1870 Leaders show:

  • Offensive Scoring Leader (Most Scored)
    Princeton (3-0) 13 Goals
  • Defensive Scoring Leader (Least Allowed)
    Princeton (3-0) 2 Goals
  • National Champions (Retroactive)
    Princeton (3-0)

Worth Noting: Because of the limited amount of information for the 1870 season a quick review of the 1871 will combined the two seasons.

Most histories record that there were no actual games played in 1871, because the Princeton would only meet the Princeton Seminary—and no other school. But early football often had such contest—for no other reason than lack of opponents could be found.

In 1871, Princeton recorded 14 goals while allowing just 4 to the Seminary, winning the first game by a familiar score, 6-goals to 4.

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