Wednesday, November 28, 2012

28 November 1916: See Georgia Play Alabama!

On this day in 1916, the Seaboard Railroad advertised this round-trip deal to see the University of Georgia football team take on the University of Alabama football team in their last game of the season on Thanksgiving Day: 

(click to enlarge image)

Georgia won 3-0 in a game that ended on a last-minute turnover when a Georgia player scooped up an Alabama fumble from inside the 5-yard line. Alabama had won its first six games of the season, but ended 6-3 after the loss to Georgia, who also ended the 1916 season at 6-3.

By the time the next season would have begun, most of the Georgia football players, as well as Coach Cunningham and Assistant Coach Dave Paddock, were engaged in World War I; five would not survive the war, and only two of the lettermen, Owen Gaston Reynolds and Arthur Pew, Jr., would return to the gridiron.

The 1917 and 1918 seasons were cancelled, and Georgia did not play football again until October 4, 1919, in a win over the Citadel. Coach Cunningham returned in 1919 to coach Georgia to a 4-2-3 season, but then left college athletics to pursue a career in the United States Army, where he reached the rank of General.

When Memorial Hall was opened in 1929, it was dedicated to the 47 University of Georgia men who died in the Great War.

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