Robert L. Mathews

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Robert L. Mathews
Robert L. Mathews.png
The Archive 1928, Saint Louis yearbook
Sport(s) Football, basketball, baseball
Biographical details
Born c. 1887
Leadville, Colorado
Died September 1, 1947(1947-09-01) (aged 60)
Portland, Oregon
Alma mater University of Notre Dame
Playing career
Football
1907
1908–1910

Washington
Notre Dame
Position(s) Back
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Football
1911
1912–1914
1915–1920
1921
1922–1925
1926–1927
1929
1931–1932
1937–1942
1944
1945–1946

Basketball
1942–1943

Baseball
1922

St. Edward's
Kenyon
Willamette
Washington (freshmen)
Idaho
Saint Louis
Gonzaga
West Seattle Athletic Club
Portland
Portland Rockets
Lewis & Clark


Portland


Washington
Administrative career (AD unless noted)
1915–1921
1922–1926
1937–1944
Willamette
Idaho
Portland
Head coaching record
Overall 3–6 (AFL)
8–8 (college basketball)
15–3 (college baseball)
Statistics
College Football Data Warehouse

Robert Lee "Matty" Mathews (c. 1887 – September 1, 1947) was an American football player and coach. He was the head coach at St. Edward's College (1911), Kenyon College (1912–1914), Willamette University (1915–1920), the University of Idaho (1922–1925), Saint Louis University (1926–1927), Gonzaga University (1929), the University of Portland (1937–1942),[1] and Lewis & Clark College (1945–1946).

Born in Leadville, Colorado, Mathews played college football at the University of Washington in Seattle as a freshman then transferred to the University of Notre Dame in 1908 and played three seasons for the Fighting Irish in South Bend, Indiana.[2][3] During his senior season in 1910, future coaching legend Knute Rockne was a freshman end.

In Mathews' four seasons at Idaho, the Vandals' first years in the Pacific Coast Conference, they won three consecutive rivalry games over Palouse neighbor Washington State. Idaho lost the other, Mathews' first in 1922, by a single point. The Vandals made significant use of the forward pass under Mathews,[4] who was also the athletic director at Idaho.[5][6]

He left Moscow and the Northwest in 1925 for St. Louis for two seasons but did not coach during the 1928 season,[7] and worked in private business in Akron, Ohio, until hired at Gonzaga in June 1929.[4] After less than one year in Spokane, he resigned in April 1930 to pursue career options closer to the coast.[8]

Mathews was also the head coach of the West Seattle Athletic Club in 1931 and 1932 and of the American Football League's Portland Rockets in 1944.[9][10] In the 1930s, he supervised athletics for the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camps in the state of Washington.[11]

He returned to college football in Oregon at the University of Portland in 1937, where he was also athletic director. During World War II, the school dropped football prior to the 1943 season and Mathews resigned as AD the following spring when the administration extended the hiatus for the 1944 season.[1][12] Entering his third season at Lewis & Clark in 1947,[13] Mathews died on September 1 at the age of 60 of a heart attack at his home in Portland.[11][14]

Head coaching record[edit]

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
St. Edward's Hilltoppers (1911)
1911 St. Edward's
St. Edward's:
Kenyon Lords (Ohio Athletic) (1912–1914)
1912 Kenyon 4–3–1 2–3–1 T-7th
1913 Kenyon 5–3–1 1–3–1 T-8th
1914 Kenyon 4–3–1 2–3 7th
Kenyon: 13–9–3 5–9–2
Willamette Bearcats (1915–1920)
1915 Willamette 2–2–1
1916 Willamette 4–2
1917 Willamette 1–1
1918 No team – World War I
1919 Willamette 4–1
1920 Willamette 3–1–1
Willamette: 14–7–2
Idaho Vandals (Pacific Coast) (1922–1925)
1922 Idaho 3–5 0–4 8th
1923 Idaho 5–2–1 2–2–1 T-3rd
1924 Idaho 5–2–1 4–2 4th
1925 Idaho 3–5 2–3 T-6th
Idaho: 16–14–2 8–11–1
Saint Louis Billikens (Independent) (1926–1927)
1926 Saint Louis 3–6
1927 Saint Louis 5–5
Saint Louis: 8–11
Gonzaga Bulldogs (Independent) (1929)
1929 Gonzaga 4–3
Gonzaga: 4–3
Portland Pilots (1937–1942)
1937 Portland
1938 Portland
1939 Portland
1940 Portland
1941 Portland
1942 Portland
1943 No team – World War II
Portland:
Lewis & Clark Pioneers (1945–1946)
1945 Lewis & Clark
1946 Lewis & Clark
Lewis & Clark:
Total:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Matty Mathews quits Portland". Spokesman-Review. Associated Press. May 6, 1944. p. 8. 
  2. ^ "Stars to tutor teams at Idaho". September 17, 1922. p. 3-part 4. 
  3. ^ "Vet football coach dies at Portland". Schenectady Gazette. United Press. September 2, 1947. p. 15. 
  4. ^ a b "Robert L. (Matty) Mathews selected to direct athletic destinies at Gonzaga University". Spokesman-Review. June 4, 1929. p. 16. 
  5. ^ "Department of Athletics". Gem of the Mountains, University of Idaho yearbook. 1924. p. 101. 
  6. ^ "Department of Athletics". Gem of the Mountains, University of Idaho yearbook. 1925. p. 99. 
  7. ^ "Matty Mathews here on visit". Spokane Daily Chronicle. November 3, 1928. p. 8. 
  8. ^ "Mathews leaves post at Gonzaga". Spokane Daily Chronicle. April 26, 1930. p. 1. 
  9. ^ "Matty Mathews signs to coach Portland pros". Ellensburg Daily Record. Associated Press. July 11, 1944. p. 6. 
  10. ^ "Portland Rockets (1944)". Greater Northwest Football Association. Retrieved January 14, 2014. 
  11. ^ a b "Coach Matty Mathews passes of heart attack in Portland". Spokane Daily Chronicle. Associated Press. September 1, 1947. p. 16. 
  12. ^ "Mathews quits as Pilot coach". Bend Bulletin. United Press. May 6, 1944. p. 2. 
  13. ^ "Winco league skeds practice". Spokesman-Review. Associated Press. August 29, 1947. p. 21. 
  14. ^ "Robert L. Mathews". New York Times. Associated Press. September 2, 1947. Retrieved July 8, 2011. 

External links[edit]