1894 College Football Summary

The forerunner to the Southeastern and Atlantic Coast conferences was formed this year, the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association.

Under the leadership of Vanderbilt's Dr. William Dudley; the following schools were invited to join. They were Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Sewanee and Vanderbilt.

A new rule was instituted this season and it's still used as the game progressed through the ages that kickoffs would have to travel 10-yards before being put into play.

Teams this year would be playing in two 35-minute halves; down from the 45-minutes of actions that had been used since the 1877 season, when the game was played in a pair of 45 minute halves.

The top two teams, Yale at 16-0-0 and Pennsylvania, with a 12-0-0 slate didn't meet to settle which one was the best.

George Woodruff, the Pennsylvania coach, would record his second straight 12-win season; while Amos Alonzo Stagg would register his 15th more on this later.

The Quakers, this season, would begin a 34-game winning streak; that would be snapped in 1896.

Over the same period of time, Yale would go 44 games without tasting defeat; compiling a 42-0-2 record through 1896.

As in previous seasons, Yale's defense was exceptionally stout; as it would be led by four-time All-American selection, Frank Hinkey. (He was the second such player to earn the honor.)

It has been documented that in four years of play, Hinkey never let one play to go past him.

Harvard won its first 11 games of the season, under the direction of first-year coach, William Brooks; but in its two losses, they scored just a touchdown, each, against best teams of the season, Yale and Pennsylvania.

Three officials were used this season: referee, umpire and linesman, with the latter being used for the first time. The linesman's responsibility was to keep the time of the game and also mark the distance of the play either yardage gained or lost.

In a game that ended with controversy, as Penn State's Charles Atherton booted a 20-yard place kick goal from the field, giving his team a 9-6 come-from-behind win over Oberlin.

Prior to this, only goals after touchdown were permitted by a place kick; so the latter's coach, John Heisman protested the play.

The kick was declared legal when football rules guru, Walter Camp, made post-game ruling.

Earlier in the season, Atherton was a perfect 10-of-10 on goals after touchdown in a win over Gettysburg.

This would be the first of 26 games between the Eastern teams; as the Penn State would win 25 games with one ending in a tie.

In his third season on the Chicago sidelines, Amos Alonzo Stagg would guide his team to 22 games, finishing 14-7-1.

In a game that would eventually be called "The Civil War" of college football, Oregon and Oregon State met for the first time. The latter prevailed 16-0.

1894 Leaders:

  • Offensive Scoring Leader (Most Points Scored)
      Pennsylvania (13-0-0), 484 points
  • Defensive Scoring Leader (Least Points Allowed)
      Yale (16-0-0), 13 points
  • National Champions (Retroactive)
      Princeton (8-2-0)

Writer Walter Camp /The Outing Magazine named Princeton National Champion

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