Did You Know? The Delightful Creation of Football

Joann Wolwowicz

Fall leaves are changing colors and there’s a chill in the air, which can only mean one thing. It’s football season. From homecoming games to watching NFL games all day on Sunday, when you think of fall, you think of Football. You think of offense, defense, first down, fumbles, and touchdowns. But where did the game of football first come from? Who created it? Where was it first played?

The game of football can actually be traced back to the English game of rugby, which originated in 1823. It can also be traced back to soccer which was being played as early as the 1820’s. The beginnings of college football actually started at Princeton, where students played with the objective to just advance the ball past the other team, simple rules compared to the current rules today. At Harvard in 1860, the students actually played a football type game on the first Monday of the school year, which later became known as Bloody Monday because of the violence.

Around 1865 colleges actually began organizing football games and in 1867, Princeton established some of the basic rules of the game. The first college game was played on November 16, 1867 between Rutgers College and Princeton University. Rutgers won 6 “goals” to 4.

Professional football got its start in 1895 and in 1920, the National Football League was formed.  Originally, the NFL was limited to ten teams, but by 1934 it was expanded into a thirty team league. The Super Bowl, the most watched professional championship game, was first played in 1967.

From the very first college football game played 142 years, to our own Charger football team today, we can see that the game of football has come a long way.  The next time we are sitting out in the chilly weather or in our living rooms cheering on our favorite teams, just remember that we can all bond because of the creation of one little word, TOUCHDOWN!