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Throwback: Penn Quakers’ 1897 15-0 season

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By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

On Monday night, the Clemson Tigers became the first team in the modern era to go 15-0. They handily defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide to achieve this feat.

But they are not the first team to go 15-0 in a season. The 1987 Penn Quakers were the first to do it; however, they did not win the National Championship.

While Clemson won the College Football Playoff National Championship, the Quakers won the 15 games in a shorter season. Their season began on September 22nd and ran through November 25th.


The Tigers, for example, began their season on September 1st. Their season concluded on January 7th of the next year.

The Quakers began their season with a 17-0 win over the Bucknell Bison on September 22nd. Three days later, Penn defeated Franklin & Marshall Diplomats, 33-0.

Four days later, the Quakers defeated the Washington & Jefferson , 18-4. Penn also won 33-0 over the Bison on October 2nd.

Then, four days later, the Quakers defeated the Gettysburg Bullets in a 57-0 blowout. Three days later, Penn defeated the Lehigh Mountain Hawks, 58-0.

On October 13th, the Quakers defeated the Virginia Cavaliers in a 42-0 win. Three days later, they defeated the Dartmouth Big Green in a 34-0 win.

The Quakers win streak continued with a 24-0 over the Penn State Nittany Lions on October 20th. The team improved to 10-0 with a 46-0 win over the Lafayette Leopards on October 23rd.

Their final game in the month of October was in a 40-0 win over the Brown Bears.

Their first win in November came in a 20-10 win over the Carlisle Indians on November 6th. One week later, the Quakers won 22-0 over the Wesleyan (Connecticut) Cardinals.

Then, on November 20th, Penn defeated the Harvard Crimson, 15-6. Their final win of the season came in their lowest-scoring game of the season in a 4-0 win over the Cornell Big Red on November 25th.

The Quakers were coached by George Woodruff. They averaged 30.9 points per game, while allowing 1.3 points per contest.

They outscored their competition 443-20. The Tigers, on the other hand, outscored their opponents 664-197.


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About Anthony Caruso III (10343 Articles)
Anthony Caruso III is the Publisher of The Capital Sports Report.

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