Thursday, April 28, 2011

John Heisman's Bulletin Board Material

In 1922, Alabama head coach Xen Scott took his team on a trip north to Philadelphia to play the University of Pennsylvania on historic Franklin Field.

Heisman at Penn
The coach of the Quakers that season was none other than John Heisman who had landed at Penn after a divorce settlement forced him to leave Georgia Tech (the couple agreed to not live in the same city and his former wife chose to stay in Atlanta).

Penn was viewed as a power that season after trouncing Navy and the Quakers were undefeated heading into the Nov. 4 contest with the Crimson Tide. Heisman went so far as to tell a local newspaper that he didn't want to embarrass Alabama so he planned to pull his starters after "a 25 or 30 point lead."

That quip, according to Bernie Perry, the Crimson Tide's manager that year,  prompted a mad scramble by the Alabama staff.

"[Athletic Director Charles] Bernier and I bought up all the available papers and he saw that every boy had a copy," he told the Birmingham Post-Herald in a 1959 story about the game.

The Crimson Tide beat the Quakers 9-7.