1910 Vanderbilt Commodores football team

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1910 Vanderbilt Commodores football
SIAA co-champion
Conference Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association
1910 record 8–0–1 (5–0 SIAA)
Head coach Dan McGugin (7th season)
Offensive scheme Short punt
Captain Bill Neely
Home stadium Dudley Field
Seasons
← 1909
1911 →
1910 SIAA football standings
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
Vanderbilt + 5 0 0     8 0 1
Auburn + 5 0 0     6 1 0
Sewanee 3 1 0     8 2 0
Georgia 4 2 1     6 2 1
Ole Miss 2 1 0     7 1 0
Mississippi A&M 4 2 0     7 2 0
Mercer 3 2 0     6 3 0
Georgia Tech 3 3 0     5 3 0
Clemson 2 3 1     4 3 1
LSU 1 3 0     1 5 0
Tennessee 1 4 0     3 5 1
The Citadel 0 2 0     3 4 0
Alabama 0 4 0     4 4 0
Howard 0 5 0     1 7 0
  • + – Conference co-champions

The 1910 Vanderbilt Commodores football team represented Vanderbilt University in the sport of American football during 1910 college football season. In Dan McGugin's 7th year as head coach, the Commodores as members of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (SIAA) compiled an 8–0–1 record (5–0 SIAA) and outscored their opponents 165 to 8, winning a conference championship.

The only blemish on Vanderbilt's record was a scoreless tie with defending national champion Yale, the first time Yale had been held scoreless at home, and the South's first great showing against an Eastern power. James Howell's computer rating system retroactively named Vanderbilt a national champion.[1]

The team was led by lineman Will Metzger,[2] and piloted in the backfield by quarterback Ray Morrison. Metzger was selected third-team All-American by Walter Camp, the third player from the South ever to receive such and honor.

Before the season[edit]

Former Vanderbilt player Bob Blake received a law degree and returned to Vanderbilt for one season as an assistant for head coach Dan McGugin.[3] The team's captain was Bill Neely, the older brother of Jess Neely.

In 1910, football used a one-platoon system, with players featuring on both offense, defense, and special teams. Also, the field was 110 yards in length, touchdowns were 5 points, and field goals earned 4 points. The team that scored a touchdown had the option to kickoff or receive.

Schedule[edit]

Date Time Opponent Site Result Attendance
September 24 Mooney School* Dudley FieldNashville, Tennessee W 34–0   1,500
October 1 Rose Polytechnic* Dudley Field • Nashville, Tennessee W 23–0    
October 8 Castle Heights* Dudley Field • Nashville, Tennessee W 14–0    
October 15 Tennessee Dudley Field • Nashville, Tennessee (Rivalry) W 18–0    
October 22 at Yale* Yale FieldNew Haven, Connecticut (Tie of Yale) T 0–0    
October 29 3:00 p.m. Ole Miss Dudley Field • Nashville, Tennessee (Rivalry) W 9–2    
November 5 Louisiana St. Dudley Field • Nashville, Tennessee W 22–0    
November 12 at Georgia Tech Tech FlatsAtlanta W 22–0    
November 24 Sewanee Dudley Field • Nashville, Tennessee (Rivalry) W 23–6   10,000
*Non-conference game.

[4]

Season summary[edit]

Mooney[edit]

Vanderbilt opened the season on September 24 with a defeat of Mooney School 34–0.[n 1] Ray Morrison and Bill Neely starred in the backfield.[7] Despite the excessive heat,[8] newcomers Kent Morrison, Enoch Brown, and Hugh Morgan played well.[8]

The starting lineup was E. Brown (left end), Stegall (left tackle), Metzger (left guard), Morgan (center), Ridgeway (right guard), Freeland (right tackle), Covington (right end), Morrison (quarterback), Neely (left halfback), Williams (right halfback), Robbins (fullback).[7]

Rose Polytechnic[edit]

Vanderbilt won over Rose Polytechnic 23–0. Morrison and Neely again starred in the swift backfield.[9] Ted Ross re-injured his knee.[8] Taking Ross's place in the line was Tom Brown.[8]

The starting lineup was E. Brown (left end), Freeland (left tackle), Metzger (left guard), Morgan (center), Ross (right guard), Brown (right tackle), Stewart (right end), Morrison (quarterback), K. Morrison (left halfback), Neely (right halfback), Williams (fullback).[9]

Castle Heights[edit]

In the third week of play, the Commodores beat Castle Heights Military Academy 14–0. The contest was billed as practice for the upcoming game with Tennessee.[10] The low score was a bit of a let down.[10]

Tennessee[edit]

Tennessee at Vanderbilt
1 234Total
Tennessee 0 000 0
Vanderbilt 0 666 18

Vanderbilt then won a tough match 18–0 over the Tennessee Volunteers.[11] After a blocked punt, Vanderbilt's Bo Williams went across for the game's first touchdown.[11] The second score came when Neely went around right-end for 15 yards and a touchdown.[11] Neely had another touchdown in the fourth quarter, running 25 yards.[11] Several fights between players nearly broke out during the game.[10]

Captain Neely

The starting lineup was Anderson (left end), T. Brown (left tackle), Metzger (left guard), Morgan (center), Steagal (right guard), Freeland (right tackle), E. Brown (right end), Robins (quarterback), K. Morrison (left halfback), Neely (right halfback), Williams (fullback).[11]

Yale[edit]

Vanderbilt at Yale
1 234Total
Vanderbilt 0 000 0
Yale 0 000 0

October 22 brought the highlight of the year: a scoreless tie with the defending national champion, coach Ted Coy's Yale Bulldogs.[13] It was the first time Yale had been held scoreless at home,[14] and the south's first great showing against an Eastern power.[15]

The game was played in a pouring rain.[12] One account reads "Four times brilliant rushes around end by Capt. Neely brought the ball well into Yale territory, only to be lost because of penalties against the visitors. Vanderbilt did not substitute a single player."[12]

Neely, recalling the game said "The score tells the story a good deal better than I can. All I want to say is that I never saw a football team fight any harder at every point that Vanderbilt fought today – line, ends, and backfield. We went in to give Yale the best we had and I think we about did it."[16]

Ray Morrison

The starting lineup was Stewart (left end), Freeland (left tackle), F. Brown (left guard), Morgan (center), Metzger (right guard), Noel (right tackle), E. Brown (right end), R. Morrison (quarterback), Neely (left halfback), . Morrison (right halfback), Williams (fullback).[12]

Mississippi[edit]

Mississippi at Vanderbilt
1 234Total
Miss. 2 000 2
Vanderbilt 6 300 9

Vanderbilt won a close game over Mississippi 9–2. Late in the first quarter, Ray Morrison ran 90 yards for Vanderbilt's touchdown on a punt return.[18] On the ensuing drive, Neely set up to punt, and the ball got away from him. Attempting to recover it, he booted the ball behind his own goal line, netting a safety for Mississippi.[18] Neely later made a 22-yard field goal.[17] John Heisman was field judge, and McGugin did not want to show too much, playing Heisman's Georgia Tech in two weeks.[19]

The starting lineup was Stewart (left end), T. Brown (left tackle), Brown (left guard), Morgan (center), Metzger (right guard), Freeland (right tackle), E. Brown (right end), Morrison (quarterback), Neely (left halfback), K. Morrison (right halfback), Williams (fullback).[18]

Louisiana State[edit]

Louisiana State at Vanderbilt
1 234Total
LSU 0 000 0
Vanderbilt 11 650 22

The Commodores overwhelmed the Louisiana State Tigers 22–0. Vanderbilt's first score came on a 12-yard Kent Morrison run. He also scored the second touchdown. Neely made the third score, and the last was from an Enoch Brown run of 60 yards.[20] Subs were sent in by game's end.[19]

Enoch Brown

The starting lineup was Stewart (left end), T. Brown (left tackle), Brown (left guard), Morgan (center), Metzger (right guard), Freeland (right tackle), E. Brown (right end), Morrison (quarterback), Neely (left halfback), K. Morrison (right halfback), Martin (fullback).[20]

Georgia Tech[edit]

Vanderbilt at Georgia Tech
1 234Total
Vanderbilt 0 01111 22
Ga. Tech 0 000 0

Vanderbilt beat Heisman's Georgia Tech 22–0.[21] Sewanee's coach Harris Cope was at the game, and again McGugin took to conventional football, resulting in a scoreless first half.[19]

The first score came on a pass from Bill Neely to Enoch Brown. Two minutes later, Ray Morrison got away for another touchdown, and the game opened up from there.[22] Morrison was considered the game's star.[21] After an illegal forward pass, Vanderbilt had another touchdown (Bradley Walker's officiating drew criticism throughout).[21] The last score came after a 25-yard run from Neely and was scored by a dodging Morrison.[21]

The starting lineup was Stewart (left end), Freeland (left tackle), Metzger (left guard), Morgan (center), Stegall (right guard), T. Brown (right tackle), E. Brown (right end), Morrison (quarterback), K. Morrison (left halfback), Neely (right halfback), Williams (fullback).[21]

Sewanee[edit]

The Commodores defeated the Sewanee Tigers 23–6. By the second quarter, Sewanee's defense was "completely dismantled" by Vanderbilt's rushing attack.[23] Sewanee had one first down all game – an 85-yard run by Aubrey Lanier.[23]

The starting lineup was Stewart (left end), T. Brown (left tackle), Stegall (left guard), Morgan (center), Metzger (right guard), Freeland (right tackle), E. Brown (right end), Morrison (quarterback), K. Morrison (left halfback), Neely (right halfback), Williams (fullback).[23]

Postseason[edit]

Will Metzger

Morrison, Metzger, Freeland, and Neely made composite All-Southern.[24] Metzger was selected third-team All-American by Walter Camp, the third player from the South ever to receive such an honor.[25]

Legacy[edit]

Both Metzger and Morrison were selected for an Associated Press Southeast Area All-Time football team 1869–1919 era.[26]

Personnel[edit]

Depth chart[edit]

The following chart provides a visual depiction of Vanderbilt's lineup during the 1910 season with games started at the position reflected in parenthesis. The chart mimics a short punt formation while on offense, with the quarterback under center.

LE
Slick Stewart (5)
Enoch Brown (2)
Anderson (1)
 
LT LG C RG RT
Tom Brown (4) Will Metzger (4) Hugh Morgan (8) Will Metzger (4) Ewing Y. Freeland (5)
Ewing Y. Freeland (3) Charles Brown (3) Steagall (2) Tom Brown (2)
Steagall (1) Steagall (1) Ridgeway (1) Oscar Noel (1)
Ted Ross (1)
RE
Enoch Brown (6)
Covington (1)
Slick Stewart (1)
Oscar Noel (0)
QB
Ray Morrison (7)
Rabbi Robins (1)
LHB RHB
Kent Morrison (4) Bill Neely (4)
Bill Neely (4) Kent Morrison (3)
Bo Williams (1)
FB
Henry "Bo" Williams (6)
Martin (1)
Rabbi Robins (1)

-

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Mooney School was a preparatory school for boys in Murfreesboro.[5] It was named for William Drumgoole Mooney, the first headmaster of Battle Ground Academy in Franklin.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "1910 NCAA Division IA Football Power Ratings". www.jhowell.net. 
  2. ^ Christopher J. Walsh (2006). Where Football Is King: A History of the SEC. Taylor Trade Publishing. p. 120. 
  3. ^ Bill Traughber (November 23, 2011). "Vandy's gridiron Rhodes Scholars". 
  4. ^ "1910 Vanderbilt Commodores Schedule and Results". Retrieved March 11, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Harber's History Lesson: Mooneys brought high standards for education - Rutherford County Tennessee Historical Society". 6 July 2014. 
  6. ^ Bill Jakes. Murfreesboro. p. 43. 
  7. ^ a b Grantland Rice (October 2, 1910). "Commodores Test The "New Game"". The Tennessean. p. 6. Retrieved June 18, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  8. ^ a b c d Vanderbilt University, p. 302
  9. ^ a b Grantland Rice (October 9, 1910). "Commodores Pluck Rose". The Tennessean. p. 6. Retrieved June 18, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  10. ^ a b c Vanderbilt University, p. 303
  11. ^ a b c d e f Grantland Rice (October 16, 1910). "Commodores Win After The Fiercest Sort of Battle". The Tennessean. p. 9. Retrieved May 10, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  12. ^ a b c d "Yale and Vanderbilt Tie". Chicago Daily Tribune. October 23, 1910. p. 3. Retrieved April 28, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  13. ^ "Brown Calls Vanderbilt '06 Best Eleven South Ever Had". Atlanta Constitution. February 19, 1911. p. 52. Retrieved March 8, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  14. ^ Bill Traughber (November 9, 2005). "Commodores Shock Powerful Yale in 1910". Retrieved March 11, 2015. 
  15. ^ Edwin Pope. Football's Greatest Coaches. p. 343. 
  16. ^ Bill Traughber (2011). Vanderbilt Football:Tales of Commodore Gridiron History. p. 44. 
  17. ^ a b Grantland Rice (October 30, 1910). "Morrison's Brilliant Ninety-Yard Dash The Main Factor In Mississippi's 9-2 Defeat". The Tennessean. p. 8. Retrieved May 10, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  18. ^ a b c "Vandy Outlucked Them". The Houston Post. October 30, 1910. p. 19. Retrieved May 6, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  19. ^ a b c Vanderbilt University, p. 305
  20. ^ a b c Glenn A. Hall (November 6, 1910). "Commodores Trounce L. S. U." The Tennessean. p. 6. Retrieved May 6, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  21. ^ a b c d e f "Ray Morrison Licks Jackets". The Atlanta Constitution. November 13, 1910. p. 2. Retrieved May 10, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  22. ^ Vanderbilt University, p. 306
  23. ^ a b c "Vanderbilt Wins From Sewanee Team". The Courier-Journal. November 25, 1910. p. 7. Retrieved May 10, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  24. ^ closed access publication – behind paywall "All S. I. A. A. Team." Times-Picayune. December 8, 1910. 
  25. ^ "On the Gridiron and Diamond". The Kappa Alpha Journal. 30 (2): 211. 
  26. ^ "All-Time Football Team Lists Greats Of Past, Present". Gadsden Times. July 27, 1969. 

Bibliography[edit]

Vanderbilt University. Vanderbilt University Quarterly. 10.