1890 Minnesota Golden Gophers football team

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1890 Minnesota Golden Gophers football
Conference Independent
1890 record 5–1–1
Head coach Tom Eck (1st season)
Captain Horace R. Robinson
← 1889
1891 →

The 1890 Minnesota Golden Gophers football team represented the University of Minnesota in the 1890 college football season. It was the only season under head coach Tom Eck and featured the historic first meeting between Minnesota and Wisconsin, the most-played rivalry at the top level of NCAA college football.[1] The two teams have played each other every year since then except for 1906. That game was canceled by President Theodore Roosevelt who had decided to "cool off heated college football rivalries because of injuries and deaths on the field."[2]:249 The game was a decisive 63-0 Minnesota win.

Coach Eck started holding signal drills before each game and established a training table. This is considered to be the start of "scientific football" at Minnesota.[2]:311 He also acted as the team's trainer.

The week before that game, Minnesota took on Grinnell in Minneapolis, the first out-of-state opponent in Minnesota football history. The game was a hard fought 18-13 Minnesota victory.[3]:18

The Ariel declared this team to be the "champions of the northwest".[3]:19


Date Opponent Site Result
October 27 at Hamline St. Paul, MN W 44–0  
November 3 at Shattuck Faribault, MN W 58–0  
November 5 Ex-Collegiates Minneapolis, MN T 0–0  
November 8 Iowa College Minneapolis, MN W 18–13  
November 15 Wisconsin Minneapolis, MN (Rivalry) W 63–0  
November 19 Ex-Collegiates Minneapolis, MN L 11–14  
November 29 Ex-Collegiates Minneapolis, MN W 14–6  


Horace R. Robinson (captain), William C. Leary, George K. Belden, J.A. Harris, S.S. Start, Grant B. Rossman, Eugene L. Patterson, William C. Muir, George C. Sikes, Alf F. Pillsbury, Harry E. White, Charles E. Guthrie, James E. Madigan, David R. Burbank, Everhard P. Harding; Trainer Tom Eck.[3]:33


  1. ^ "Official 2006 NCAA Divisions I-A and I-AA Football Records Book" (PDF). pp. 110–111. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-07-10. Retrieved 2007-08-05.
  2. ^ a b University of Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletics (2004). Jeff Keiser; Shane Sanderfeld, eds. Minnesota Football 2004 Media Guide. University of Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletics Communications.
  3. ^ a b c The General Alumni Association (1928). Martin Newell, ed. The History of Minnesota Football. The General Alumni Association of the University of Minnesota.