1917 Davidson Wildcats football team

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1917 Davidson Wildcats football
Conference South Atlantic Intercollegiate Athletic Association
1917 record 6–4 (1–2 SAIAA)
Head coach Bill Fetzer
Captain Georgie King
Seasons
← 1916
1918 →
1917 SAIAA football standings
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
Georgetown $ 2 0 0     8 1 0
North Carolina A&M 2 1 1     6 2 1
VPI 2 1 1     6 2 1
Richmond 2 1 0     4 2 1
Washington and Lee 2 1 0     4 3 0
Maryland State 2 1 1     4 3 1
Davidson 1 2 0     6 4 0
VMI 1 3 1     4 4 1
St. John's (MD) 0 1 0     0 1 0
Johns Hopkins 0 1 0     0 3 0
William & Mary 0 3 0     3 5 0
  • $ – Conference champion

The 1917 Davidson Wildcats football team represented Davidson University in the 1917 college football season. Led by third year coach Bill Fetzer, the Wildcats competed as a member of the South Atlantic Intercollegiate Athletic Association (SAIAA). Despite a record of 6–4 (1–2 SAIAA), some would call Davidson the second best southern team that year.[1] Davidson defeated Auburn 21 to 7, in one of the great upsets in Southern football history,[2] and scored the most on the 1917 Georgia Tech Golden Tornado, for many years considered the greatest football team the South ever produced,[3] in a 32 to 10 loss. Following the Auburn game the Davidson team was first referred to as "the Wildcats.

The team included a 17-year-old Buck Flowers, and two other All-Southerns in Wooly Grey and captain Georgie King. The backfield consisted of Flowers, quarterback Henry Spann, halfback Jack Black, and fullback Buck Burns.[4]

Schedule[edit]

Date Opponent Site Result
September 29 at Navy* Worden FieldAnnapolis, MD L 6–27  
October 6 at North Carolina A&M Riddick StadiumRaleigh, NC L 3–7  
October 13 at Georgia Tech* Grant FieldAtlanta, GA L 10–32  
October 20 at VPI Miles FieldBlacksburg, VA L 7–13  
October 27 vs. VMI Danville, VA W 23–7  
November 3 at Furman* Greenville, SC W 28–7  
November 10 vs. Auburn* Atlanta, GA W 21–7  
November 17 Wake Forest* W 72–7  
November 24 Wofford* W 62–0  
November 29 vs. Clemson* Charlotte, NC W 21–9  
*Non-conference game.

[5]

Season summary[edit]

Week 3: at Georgia Tech[edit]

Davidson scored the most on the south's first national champion – Georgia Tech, for many years considered the greatest football team the South ever produced,[3] in a 32 to 10 loss. This was the only game none of Tech's backs gained 100 yards rushing. Tech only led 6 to 3 until Everett Strupper broke open the game in the second half.[6] Davidson got desperate and tried the pass, getting to within the 15-yard line. Walker Carpenter broke through the line and got a 10-yard loss.[7]

Davidson captain Georgie King said “I consider Georgia Tech the best football team I have ever played against or ever expect to play against.”[8]

Week 7: Auburn[edit]

Week 7: Davidson at Auburn
1 234Total
Davidson 0 777 21
Auburn 0 070 7
  • Date: November 10
  • Location: Atlanta, GA
  • Referee: Lewis (Virginia)

Auburn was involved in of the great upsets in Southern football history as the Wildcats bested the Auburn Tigers 21–7.[9][10]

Week 10: Clemson[edit]

Week 10: Clemson at Davidson
1 234Total
Clemson 9 000 9
Davidson 7 0140 21

Davidson beat Clemson 21–9 on a soggy field. Tackle Douglas Elliott broke his leg below the knee in the second quarter. King scored two touchdowns and Flowers another. Clemson's score followed a kick return by Stumpy Banks to the 4-yard line.[11]

The starting lineup was King (left end), Shaw (left tackle), Gray (left guard), D. Crouch (center), McMaster (right guard), Elliott (right tackle), Roberts (right end), Spann (quarterback), McAlester (left halfback), Thomas (right halfback), Burns (fullback).[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bernie McCarty (February 1988). "Georgia Tech's 1917 backfield, better than the Four Horsemen Part 1" (PDF). College Football Historical Society. 1 (3). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-03-04. 
  2. ^ "Buck Flowers: He Could Do It All — Well". Daily Item. Sumter, S.C. October 15, 1969. p. B2. 
  3. ^ a b Wiley Lee Umphlett (1992). Creating The Big Game. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 141. ISBN 0313284040. 
  4. ^ "Niches in the Wildcat Hall of Fame". The Davidsonian. March 6, 1924. p. 5. Retrieved August 23, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read
  5. ^ "1917 Davidson Wildcats Schedule and Results". 
  6. ^ Bernie McCarty (February 1988). "Georgia Tech's 1917 backfield, better than the Four Horsemen Part 1". College Football Historical Society. 1 (3).  Part 1 Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine. Part 2 Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ Technique 9 Oct 1917, Print.
  8. ^ (16 November 2010) In "Technique Newsletter Volume 07, Issue 11." Retrieved November 16, from http://smartech.gatech.edu/handle/1853/26083
  9. ^ a b Dick Jemison (November 11, 1917). "Ralph Flowers, Demon Halfback, Defeats Auburn". Atlanta Constitution – via Newspapers.com.  Part 1 Part 2 open access publication – free to read
  10. ^ "Wildcat Origin". Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved March 22, 2015. 
  11. ^ a b c "Davidson Defeats The Clemson Football Team". Winston-Salem Journal. November 30, 1917. p. 9. Retrieved May 24, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication – free to read