Thursday, September 21, 2006

This Week in College Football History: Sept. 25 – Oct. 1

The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame, Inc.

MORRISTOWN, N.J., Sept. 19, 2006 – As part of an on-going series throughout the fall, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame circulates in advance This Week in College Football History, which takes a look back at some of college football’s landmark moments over the last 138 years. During the season, many of these events are featured in a changing exhibit at the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Ind.

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The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame.

Featured Moment:

Sept. 25, 1971: Marshall edges Xavier 15-13 before a teary-eyed crowd in Morgantown, W.Va. It marks a complete comeback for head coach Jack Lengyel's Thundering Herd after a chartered plane crash kills 75 players, student-athletes, support staff and alumni on Nov. 14, 1970, en route from a game against East Carolina in Greenville, N.C.

A new Warner Brothers movie, "We Are Marshall", will premier December 22 with Matthew McConaughey starring as Coach Lengyel. The movie follows the team from the air disaster until the epic victory over Xavier less than nine months later. Lengyel has served as a member of the NFF Board of Directors since 1990. To view the movie trailer, please visit:


Other Notable Dates:

Sept. 25, 1982: Legendary Grambling coach Eddie Robinson, a 1997 inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame, reaches the 300-win plateau with a 43-21 victory over Florida A&M. Senior wideout Trumaine Johnson caught three touchdown passes in a span of five minutes for the Tigers.

Sept. 25, 1987: Hall of Fame coach Duffy Daugherty of Michigan State dies on Sept. 25, 1987.

Sept. 26, 1942: Quarterback Lou Saban leads the Indiana Hoosiers to a 53-0 victory over Butler. The 53-point total was a record for Indiana's old Memorial Stadium. Saban would later go on to a successful coaching career with 197 wins for 27 teams over a 52-year coaching career from 1954-2005. In 2003, NFF Board Member George M. Steinbrenner endowed one of the NFF prestigious National Scholar-Athlete Awards in Coach Saban’s honor.

Sept. 27, 2003: Northern Illinois follows up victories over Maryland and Alabama by hosting and defeating Iowa State 24-16. NIU improved its record to 4-0. The Huskies later are ranked as high as No. 11 nationally.

Sept. 28, 1940: College Hall of Fame member Tom Harmon of Michigan runs for touchdowns of 94, 86, 70, and seven yards against California in a 41-0 win over the Bears in Ann Arbor. A fan runs onto the field and tries to tackle Harmon but misses. Harmon ends the afternoon with a touchdown-run average of 64-plus yards.

Sept. 28, 1995: TE Brian Foster of Rhode Island sets an NCAA all-divisions record for his position with 326 receiving yards on 18 catches in a win over Brown. The record still stands.

Sept. 29, 1894: Yale downed Trinity 42-0 and went on to set a collegiate record with a 16-0 overall mark. The Bulldogs won the most games ever by a college squad in one campaign, outscoring opponents 497-16.

Sept. 30, 1939: Fordham meets Waynesburg in a historic game – the first football telecast in history. Bill Stern calls the play-by-play for television station W2XBS (now WNBC-TV) while a young announcer from Alabama named Mel Allen does pre-game interviews. Few television sets could receive the signal, but some fans saw the telecast at the nearby New York World's Fair.

Oct. 1, 1983: Mississippi Valley State WR Jerry Rice catches an NCAA Division I-AA-best 24 passes against Southern. Rice earned induction into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2006.

Corrections: In last week’s edition, the Sept. 21, 1991 entry, incorrectly identified Iowa Wesleyan QB Dustin DeWalt as Dustin DeWitt; the Sept 18, 1954, incorrectly identified Oklahoma’s Buddy Leake as Bobby Leake; and the Sept. 22, 1990 entry incorrectly identified Illinois Howard Griffith as Howard Griffin.

ABOUT The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame

With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame, a non-profit educational organization, runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. The NFF presents the MacArthur Trophy, the Draddy Trophy, presented by HealthSouth, and releases the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) Standings. NFF programs include the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Ind., Play It Smart, the NFF Center for Youth Development Through Sport at Springfield College (Mass.), the NFL-NFF Coaching Academy, and scholarships of over $1 million for college and high school scholar-athletes. Learn more at


Phil Marwill, director of communications

1-800-486-1865, ext. 118

Hillary Jeffries, special projects assistant

1-800-486-1865, ext. 123

Bo Carter, correspondent