1886 college football season

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The 1886 college football season had no clear-cut champion, with the Official NCAA Division I Football Records Book listing Princeton and Yale as having been selected national champions.[2]

On Thanksgiving Day in Princeton, NJ, undefeated teams from Yale and Princeton met. The game started late due to the absence of a referee, and heavy rain caused the game to be called on account of darkness with Yale leading 4-0 in the second half. Under the rules of the time, the game was declared "no contest" by the substitute referee, and the final score was declared to be 0-0. After a special meeting of the Intercollegiate Football Association held to review the game, the Association issued a two-part resolution - that (1) Yale should have been acknowledged the winner, but that (2) under their existing rules, the Association did not have the authority to award the game to them.[3]

The first intercollegiate game in the state of Vermont happened on November 6, 1886 between Dartmouth and Vermont at Burlington, Vermont. Dartmouth won 91 to 0.[4] Vermont was the last state in New England yet to have a football contest.


  1. ^ http://www.jhowell.net/cf/cf1886.htm
  2. ^ Official 2009 NCAA Division I Football Records Book (PDF). Indianapolis, IN: The National Collegiate Athletic Association. August 2009. p. 70. Retrieved 2009-10-16. 
  3. ^ "No Football Champions.; But Princeton Challenges Yale To Another Game On Saturday". The New York Times. 1886-11-28. 
  4. ^ "College Football Games". New York Times. November 7, 1886. p. 3. Retrieved March 27, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read