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1941 college football season: Wikis


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The 1941 college football season ended with the Gophers of the University of Minnesota repeating as the nation’s #1 team and national champion. This was Minnesota's fifth national championship in only eight years. As per Big Ten policy at the time they were not allowed to participate in a post-season bowl game. Duke University, which was also unbeaten and untied (9-0-0) finished at #2 and faced #12 Oregon State University in the Rose Bowl, which was held in Durham, North Carolina, rather than Pasadena, California, a few weeks after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. The Blue Devils lost that game, 20-16, but postseason results did not affect the poll. Each writer listed his choice for the top ten teams, and points were tallied based on 10 for first place, 9 for second, etc., and the AP then ranked the twenty teams with the highest number of points.



September 20 Tennessee beat Furman 32-6 and Boston College beat St. Anselm, 78-0.

September 27 In Seattle, defending champion Minnesota beat Washington 14-6, while in New Orleans, Boston College fell to Tulane, 21-7. Stanford beat Oregon 19-15, Michigan beat Michigan State 19-7, Texas won at Colorado, 34-6 and Duke beat Wake Forest 43-14. Tennessee was idle


October 4 Minnesota was idle. Tennessee lost at Duke, 19-0. In New York, Fordham beat SMU 16-10. Elsewhere, it was Stanford over UCLA 33-0, Michigan over Iowa 6-0, Northwestern beating Kansas State 51-3 and Texas defeating LSU 34-0.

October 11 Minnesota beat Illinois 34-6, Northwestern beat Wisconsin 41-14, and Michigan beat Pittsburgh 40-0. In Baltimore, Duke beat Maryland 50-0, while in Dallas, Texas beat Oklahoma 40-7. Fordham won at North Carolina 27-14. Stanford lost at Oregon State 10-0. In the poll that followed, Minnesota was ranked #1, followed by Texas, Duke, Fordham, Northwestern and Michigan.

October 18 #1 Minnesota beat Pittsburgh 39-0. #2 Texas defeated Arkansas 48-14. #3 Duke beat visiting Colgate 27-14, and #4 Fordham beat West Virginia 27-0. In Ann Arbor, #6 Michigan beat visiting #5 Northwestern 14-7. #7 Navy beat Cornell 14-0 in Baltimore. In the next poll, Michigan and Navy moved up while Fordham and Northwestern dropped out of the top five.

October 25 The biggest game of the year took place in Ann Arbor, Michigan, as #1 Minnesota defeated #3 Michigan, 7-0. #2 Texas beat Rice 40-0. #4 Duke won at Pittsburgh 27-7. #5 Navy and Harvard played to a 0-0 tie. #6 Fordham beat TCU 28-14, while #9 Texas A&M won at Baylor 48-0, to reach 5-0-0. In the vote that followed, Minnesota received 60 first place votes, and Texas received 53. When the points were tallied, they both had 1,161 points and were tied for #1.


November 1 In Dallas, #1 Texas beat SMU 34-0, while in Minneapolis, the other #1, Minnesota, edged #9 Northwestern 8-7. In New York, #3 Fordham defeated Purdue 17-0, and in Atlanta, #4 Duke won at Georgia Tech 14-0. In Little Rock, #5 Texas A&M beat Arkansas 7-0. Texas was the new #1 the following week, followed by Minnesota, Fordham, Duke and Texas A&M, all unbeaten and untied.

November 8 #1 Texas and Baylor played to a 7-7 tie. #2 Minnesota beat Nebraska 9-0. #3 Fordham lost at Pittsburgh 13-0. #4 Duke won at Davidson 56-0. #5 Texas A&M beat SMU 21-10. #7 Notre Dame beat Navy 20-13 in Baltimore and moved into the Top Five as Fordham dropped out.

November 15 #1 Minnesota won at Iowa 34-13. #2 Texas lost to Texas Christian (TCU) 14-7. #3 Duke beat North Carolina 20-0. In Houston, #4 Texas A&M beat Rice 19-6. #5 Notre Dame won at #8 Northwestern 7-6. #7 Michigan, which beat Columbia, 28-0, moved up as Texas dropped out.

November 22 #1 Minnesota closed its season with a 41-6 win over Wisconsin in Minneapolis. #2 Texas A&M was idle as it prepared for its Thanksgiving game. #3 Duke won its season closer at N.C. State 55-6 to get a bid to Pasadena’s Rose Bowl. Fifteen days later, the bombing of Pearl Harbor called into question whether Southern California would be safe from a Japanese attack on New Year's Day. On December 15, bowl officials and U.S. Army officers met in San Francisco and decided to hold the game at Duke's stadium in Durham, North Carolina [3].

#4 Notre Dame beat USC 20-18. #5 Michigan closed its season with a 20-20 tie #14 against Ohio State. The Top four remained the same, but #6 Duquesne (which had finished its season at 8-0-0) replaced Michigan at #5. On Thanksgiving Day #2 Texas A&M lost to Texas 23-0.

Final Associated Press Poll

1 Alabama Crimson Tide] (8-2-0)
2 Duke Blue Devils (9-0-0)
3 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (8-0-1)
4 Minnesota Gophers (7-1-1
5 Michigan Wolverines (6-1-1)
6 Fordham Rams (7-1-0)
7 Missouri Tigers (8-1-0)
8 Duquesne Dukes (8-0-0)
9 Texas A&M Aggies (8-1-0)
10 Navy Midshipmen (7-1-1)
11 Northwestern Wildcats (5-3-0)
12 Oregon State Beavers (7-2-0)
13 Ohio State Buckeyes (6-1-1)
14 Georgia Bulldogs (8-1-1)
15 Pennsylvania Quakers (7-1-0)
16 Mississippi State Bulldogs (8-1-1)
17 Mississippi Rebels (6-2-1)
18 Tennessee Volunteers (8-2-0)
19 Washington State Cougars (6-3-0)
Texas Longhorns}

Bowl Games

ROSE #12 Oregon State Beavers 20 #2 Duke Blue Devils 16
SUGAR #6 Fordham Rams 2 #7 Missouri Tigers 0
COTTON #20 Alabama Crimson Tide 29 #9 Texas A&M Aggies 21
ORANGE #14 Georgia Bulldogs 40 TCU Horned Frogs 7

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Rose Bowl Grid Game is Transferred To Durham, N.C. By Duke, Beavers," Fresno Bee, Dec. 15, 1941, p2-B


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