October 22, 1904 – Biggest Victory Margin in Wolverine Football History!

1904 Michigan Football Team | bigbluefootballhistory.com
The 1904 National Champion Michigan Football team achieved a perfect season (10-0-0) and the largest win in program history (130-0) over West Virginia. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

Today’s post recalls the day that Michigan achieved the biggest victory margin in Wolverine Football history. Fielding Yost, a graduate of West Virginia University, somehow lured his alma mater to Ann Arbor for a football game. West Virginia officials should have been wary of their former football player.

The Mountaineers arrived in in Ann Arbor on October 22, 1904 to play Yost’s famous “Point-a-Minute” team that had not lost a game since Yost started coaching the Wolverines in 1901. Michigan’s record under Yost was almost perfect at 39 wins, 0 losses and 1 tie. Even more impressive was the fact that his teams had outscored their opponents by a margin of 2,110 to 24! No, this is not a misprint. The numbers that Fielding H. Yost put on the board from 1901 to 1904 were just scary.

West Virginia may have been thinking that Coach Yost would take it easy on his former team, but that did not turn out to be the case. Michigan recorded their most dominating win in Wolverine football history against Yost’s alma mater. Final Score – Michigan 130 and West Virginia 0. It could have been worse, but the second half ended after twenty minutes of play. At least Yost cut his former team a break on that one!

John Curtis Michigan Football 1904 | bigbluefootballhistory.com

John “Big Joe” Curtis set a Michigan record with 49 points in a single game in Michigan’s 130-0 victory over West Virginia in 1904. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

It was a record-setting day with lots of “firsts” in Wolverine Football History. Check them out:

·         This game was the first, and only, game ever played against West Virginia.

·         Of course, it was Michigan’s first, and only, win over the Mountaineers.

·         Michigan scored a record-setting twenty-two touchdowns in the game. (They were only worth five points at that time so it could have been 152-0.)

·         Michigan placekickers John “Big Joe” Curtis (19) and Paul Magoffin (1) kicked a record setting 20 points-after-touchdown.

·         Curtis also set a single game scoring record with 49 points (six touchdowns and 19 extra points).

·         Michigan’s lopsided win extended their undefeated streak to 40 games. Another first for Fielding Yost and his players.

Yost’s Wolverines won their final three games and finished the 1904 season with a record of 10 wins, 0 losses and 0 ties. Michigan won their third consecutive national championship and Western Conference title. They outscored their opponents by a margin of 567 to 22. According to the Wikipedia article linked below, the “point-a-minute” men actually had a scoring average of one point every 50.3 seconds. So they were even better than advertised in 1904.

So, Fielding Yost said that he loved “Meeshegan” and he backed up those words with the 130-0 win over his alma mater. Fielding H. Yost may have been kicked out of the West Virginia University Alumni Association for his dominant win over WVU. However, this impressive victory is still the biggest winning margin in Wolverine Football History. It also proved to everyone who knew Fielding Yost that he was a “Meeshegan Man” for life! Go Blue!

http://bentley.umich.edu/athdept/football/fbteam/1904fbt.htm

Barry Gallagher

Barry Gallagher

Barry Gallagher is a self-proclaimed Michigan Football Archeologist. He spends a considerable amount of his time digging into the 138-year history of Wolverine Football. He is on a mission to share his findings with Maize and Blue football fans everywhere. He is the author of one book about Michigan Football titled "21-194-13 Michigan Football's Greatest Era". His second book titled, "The Legend of Bo Schembechler-How an Unknown Buckeye Became the Winningest Coach in Michigan Football History" was released on September 12, 2017. You can learn something about Michigan Football everyday by going to his website at: bigbluefootballhistory.com. You can also follow him on Social Media.
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