clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Ohio State football: Classic 1919 win over That Team Up North

With no college football for several months, let's take a look at a classic Buckeyes game – their very first win over That Team Up North.

When you look at Ohio State's series history against their biggest rival, That Team Up North, you'll notice that, unfortunately, the wrong team holds the lifetime edge in this series with a record of 58-45-6. As a matter of fact, from 1897 through 1918, Ohio State and that other team met 15 times, and Ohio State won exactly zero times. The Buckeyes' best performances during those early years came in two ties, a 0-0 tie in 1900, and a 3-3 tie in 1910.

Things started to shift in 1919 for the Buckeyes. On October 25, 1919 in Ann Arbor the Buckeyes took the field against That Team Up North and came away with their first win in this long and storied series.

It wasn't looking good for the Buckeyes early, as Ohio State's Pete Stinchomb fumbled the opening kickoff, turning the ball over to on their own 20 yard line. Ohio State's defense held firm, forcing a three-and-out. The teams traded punts for the rest of the first quarter, until That Team Up North fumbled, and then Ohio State managed to block their subsequent punt near the Buckeyes' goal line. Right end Jim Flowers fell on the ball in the end zone for a touchdown, giving the Buckeyes a 7-0 lead in Ann Arbor.

That Team Up North managed to get on the board in the second quarter with a 45-yard field goal from Cliff Sparks. it would be their only score of the game, despite Sparks' own brother, Harry, energetically leading the home crowd in cheers to support the team. The 7-3 score would hold going into the half.

The second half was not kind to That Team Up North, as they were thoroughly outclassed by the Buckeyes. Really, they were outclassed throughout the game, making one first down in the first quarter, and none thereafter.

In the third quarter, Ohio State's three-time All American Chic Harley – who was a halfback, quarterback, kicker, punter, end, safety, and a hell of a player – broke loose for a 40-yard touchdown run, extending Ohio State's lead to 13-3. Harley attempted the PAT, but failed. The 13-3 score would hold throughout the rest of the game, and Ohio State walked away with the first of three consecutive wins over That Team Up North.

After the game, the legendary coach of the other team, Fielding Yost, asked to address the Buckeyes, and standout Chic Harley in particular:

"You boys gave a grand exhibition of football strategy and while I am sorry, dreadfully sorry, that we lost, I want to congratulate you. And you, Mr. Harley, I believe, are one of the finest little machines I have ever seen." - Fielding Yost