1888 College Football Summary

1888-1897 Touchdown 4 points; field goal 5 points; extra points 2 points

The man considered as the "Father of Football" began his coaching career this year; as Walter Camp, despite not being paid to coach, accepted the position in leading his alma mater.

In saying that his debut season was outstanding would be a severe understatement: a perfect record, 13-0-0; while scoring 698 and allowed 0.

Once again, Yale whipped-up on Wesleyan, 327-0 in three games; George Watkinson scored 22 goals after touchdowns in one of the games.

Yale, which began playing college football in 1872 and through this season put-up some mind-blogging numbers:

  • Points: for-3001, against: 56
  • Goals: for-550, against-19
  • Touchdowns: for-219, against-9
  • Won 93 of 98 games (with losses to Princeton 3; Harvard and Columbia)

This was also the first season for a new set of scoring values to be introduced.

Touchdowns were worth 4 points, with a field goal a point higher and a successful kick on the conversion was equal to that of a safety, two points.

Yale's rival, Princeton, was having its own success, finishing at 11-1 and allowing just 16 points coming in the last two games of the season: an 18-6 win over Harvard and a 10-0 loss to Yale.

As a team, Princeton found the end zone 117 times.

Leading scorer for the Tigers was Knowlton "Snake" Ames, who converted 73 goals after touchdown 14 in 44-0 win over Johns Hopkins; while adding a pair of field goals, and 9 for the season, for a total of 243 points which was the highest in Pre-1937 until the 1891 season.

In a three of games against Pennsylvania, winning by a combined 105-0, a Princeton highlight was a record 8 goals from the field.

1888 Leaders

  • Offensive Scoring Leader (Most Points Scored)
      Yale (13-0-0) 698 points
  • Defensive Scoring Leader (Least Points Allowed)
      Yale (13-0-0) 0 points allowed
  • National Champions (Retroactive)
      Yale (13-0-0)
  • Intercollegiate Football Association Standings
Team IFA Record Full Season
Yale 4-0-0 13-0-0
Princeton 3-1-0 11-1-0
Harvard 2-2-0 12-2-0
Pennsylvania 1-3-0 12-7-1
Wesleyan 0-4-0 2-7-0

Writers R.M. Hodge, Walter Camp and J. Parmly Paret, writers for The Outing Magazine named Yale National Champion.

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