1903 Clemson Tigers football team

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1903 Clemson Tigers football
SIAA Co-Champions
Conference Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association
1903 record 4–1–1 (4–0–1 SIAA)
Head coach John Heisman
Captain Hope Sadler
Home stadium Bowman Field
Seasons
« 1902 1904 »
1903 SIAA football standings
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
Clemson + 4 0 1     4 1 1
Cumberland + 4 1 1     6 1 1
Sewanee + 5 1 0     7 1 0
Vanderbilt + 5 1 1     6 1 1
Mississippi A&M 2 0 2     3 0 2
Texas 1 0 1     5 1 2
Georgia 3 2 0     3 4 0
Mississippi 1 1 1     2 1 1
Alabama 3 4 0     3 4 0
Auburn 2 3 0     4 3 0
Tennessee 2 4 0     4 5 0
Georgia Tech 1 4 0     2 5 0
Tulane 0 1 1     2 2 1
Texas A&M 0 1 0     7 3 1
Mercer 0 1 0     0 1 0
Davidson 0 1 0     1 4 0
Nashville 0 2 0     0 2 0
LSU 0 4 0     4 5 0
Kentucky State 0 0 0     7 1 0
  • + – Conference co-champions

The 1903 Clemson Tigers football team represented the Clemson Tigers of Clemson University during the 1903 college football season. The team was a member of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (SIAA) and played all its games on the road, compiling a 4–1–1 record.

Schedule[edit]

Date Opponent Site Result
October 10 at Georgia Herty FieldAthens, GA W 29–0
October 17 at Georgia Tech Atlanta, GA (Clemson – Georgia Tech rivalry) W 73–0
October 28 vs. North Carolina A&M Columbia, SC (Textile Bowl) W 24–0
November 14* at North Carolina Chapel Hill, NC L 6–11
November 21 at Davidson Davidson, NC W 24–0
November 26 vs. Cumberland Montgomery, AL (SIAA Championship Game) T 11–11
*Non-Conference Game.

Season summary[edit]

Week 2: at Georgia Tech[edit]

The week after beating Georgia 29 to 0, the Bulldogs offered Clemson a bushel of apples for every point over 29 it scored against rival Georgia Tech. Clemson would win 73 to 0, leading to Heisman's later job at Tech. Clemson as a team rushed for 615 yards, and fullback Jock Hanvey rushed for 104 yards in the first half.[1][2]

Postseason[edit]

"SIAA championship game"[edit]

Clemson vs. Cumberland
1 2 Total
Clemson 0 11 11
Cumberland 11 0 11

Cumberland rushed out to an early 11 to 0 lead. Wiley Lee Umphlett in Creating the Big Game: John W. Heisman and the Invention of American Football writes, "During the first half, Clemson was never really in the game due mainly to formidable line play of the Bridges brothers–giants in their day at 6 feet 4 inches–and a big center named "Red" Smith, was all over the field backing up the Cumberland line on defense. Clemson had been outweighed before, but certainly not like this."[3] A contemporary account reads "The Clemson players seemed mere dwarfs as they lined up for the kickoff. To the crowd on the sidelines it didn't seem that Heisman's charges could possibly do more than give a gallant account of themselves in a losing battle."[3] A touchdown was scored by fullback E. L. Minton (touchdowns were worth 5 points).[4] Guard M. O. Bridges kicked the extra point. Halfback J. A. Head made another touchdown, but Bridges missed the try. After halftime, Clemson quarterback John Maxwell raced 100 yards for a touchdown. Clemson missed the try. Cumberland fumbled a punt and Clemson recovered. Cumberland expected a trick play when Fritz Furtick simply ran up the middle and scored.[5] One account of the play reads "Heisman saw his chance to exploit a weakness in the Cumberland defense: run the ball where the ubiquitous Red Smith wasn't. So the next time Sitton started out on one of his slashing end runs, at the last second he tossed he ball back to the fullback who charges straight over center (where Smith would have been except that he was zeroing in on the elusive Sitton) and went all the way for he tying touchdown."[3] Jock Hanvey kicked the extra point and the game ended in an 11–11 tie. The winning team was to be awarded the ball. Captain W. W. Suddarth of Cumberland wanted captain Hope Sadler of Clemson to get the ball, and Sadler insisted Suddarth should have it. Some ten minutes of bickering was resolved when the ball was given to patrolman Patrick J. Sweeney, for warning the media and fans to stay down in front and allow spectators to see the game.[5] Heisman pushed for Cumberland to be named SIAA champions at year's end[6] and the school claims a share of the title.[7][8] It was Heisman's last game as Clemson head coach.[9]

Players[edit]

Line[edit]

Backfield[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Foster Senn (October 17, 1987). "This Day in Tiger Football". Clemson University Football Programs - Clemson vs Duke: 81. 
  2. ^ Mandle Parrish (October 31, 2000). "Clemson-Georgia Tech Series". 
  3. ^ a b c Wiley Lee Umphlett. Creating the Big Game: John W. Heisman and the Invention of American Football. p. 67. 
  4. ^ Sam Blackman (December 15, 2014). "Clemson’s "First Bowl Game"". 
  5. ^ a b Lou Sahadi. "24. 1903 Game With Cumberland". 100 Things Clemson Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die. 
  6. ^ Langum, David J. From Maverick to Mainstream: Cumberland School of Law, 1847-1997. p. 95. 
  7. ^ "Football". 
  8. ^ "Cumberland Blues". May 17, 2013. 
  9. ^ John M. Heisman. Heisman: The Man Behind The Trophy. p. 138.