Jan 102012

Below is a listing of the first intercollegiate game played in each state.

Note: Keep in mind these are intercollegiate games (college vs. college). Colleges often played local athletic clubs and alumni teams before ever facing a college squad.

The list below is also continuously being researched. The games listed are to the knowledge of this site, the most accurate and correct representation of the first game in each state. But as more documented games/locations are uncovered, there is the possibility that changes will need to be made to the list.

First Intercollegiate Football Game Played in Each State

Columns can be sorted by clicking on the titles in the header.

ALBirmingham18932/22Auburn (AL)Alabama32-22
ARArkadelphia189711/25ArkansasOuachita Baptist (AR)24-0
AZTucson189911/30Arizona StateArizona11-2
CALos Angeles1889?Southern CaliforniaLoyola Marymount (CA)40-0
COColorado Springs18854/11Colorado CollegeDenver (CO)12-0
CTNew Haven187211/16Yale (CT)Columbia (NY)3-0
DCWashington188311/20Gallaudet (DC)Georgetown (DC)3-0
DENewark189010/11Swarthmore Soph (PA)Delaware30-0
FLJacksonville190111/9Stetson (FL)Florida Agriculture College6-5
GAAthens18921/30GeorgiaMercer (GA)50-0
HIHonolulu190910/30Punahou College (HI)Hawaii23-0
IAGrinnell188911/16Grinnell (IA)Iowa24-0
IDMoscow18945/20IdahoWashington State22-0
ILChicago18795/30MichiganRacine (WI)1-0
INGreencastle18845/31Butler (IN)DePauw (IN)16-0
KSBaldwin City189011/22Baker (KS)Kansas22-9
KYLexington18804/9Transylvania (KY)Centre (KY)14-0
LANew Orleans189311/25Tulane (LA)Louisiana State34-0
MACambridge18745/14Harvard (MA)McGill (Canada)3-0
MDAnnapolis188211/30Navy (MD)Johns Hopkins (MD)2-0
MELewiston187511/6Tufts JV (MA)Bates (ME)1-0
MIDetroit187911/1MichiganToronto (Canada)0-0
MNSaint Paul18829/30MinnesotaHamline (MN)2-0
MOSaint Louis189011/27Washington (MO)Missouri28-0
MSOxford189311/11MississippiUnion (TN)56-0
MTMissoula189711/12Butte Business (MT)Montana20-4
NCRaleigh188810/18Wake Forest (NC)North Carolina6-4
NDGrand Forks189411/3North Dakota StateNorth Dakota20-4
NECrete18912/14NebraskaDoane (NE)18-0
NHHanover188210/31Dartmouth (NH)McGill (Canada)1-0
NJNew Brunswick186911/6Rutgers (NJ)Princeton (NJ)6-4
NMAlbuquerque18941/1New MexicoNew Mexico State18-6
NVReno189611/26California JVNevada40-0
NYNew York187211/2Rutgers (NJ)Columbia (NY)1-0
OHOxford188812/8Cincinnati (OH)Miami (OH)0-0
OKMuskogee1895?Tulsa (OK)Bacone (OK)1-0
ORCorvallis189311/11Oregon StateLewis & Clark (OR)62-0
PAPhiladelphia187611/11Princeton (NJ)Pennsylvania6-0
RIProvidence187811/13Amherst (MA)Brown (RI)1-0
SCSpartanburg188912/14Wofford (SC)Furman (SC)5-1
SD?1889?South Dakota StateSouth Dakota6-6
TNNashville189011/27Vanderbilt (TN)Nashville (TN)40-0
TXAustin189410/19TexasTexas A&M38-0
UTLogan189211/25Utah StateUtah12-0
VALexington187311/2Washington & Lee (VA)Virginia Military Institute4-2
VTBurlington188610/27Dartmouth (NH)Vermont91-0
WATacoma189011/27WashingtonWashington College (WA)0-0
WIRacine188811/29Lake Forest (IL)Racine (WI)32-0
WVMorgantown189111/28Washington & Jefferson (PA)West Virginia72-0
WYLaramie189511/29WyomingNorthern Colorado34-0
AK*Fairbanks19491/1University of AlaskaLadd AFB (AK)0-0

* Alaska has never seen an intercollegiate game. But I listed the first game involving an Alaskan college.


Additional Info

  • The first intercollegiate football game played in the state of Illinois, didn’t even involve a school from Illinois. Michigan and the now defunct Racine College (WI), met in Chicago in the spring of 1879.
  • In 1886 the state of Vermont hosted its first intercollegiate football game. Something the rest of the states in New England had already accomplished for four or more years.
  • In 1901 the state of Florida hosted its first intercollegiate football game. Something the rest of the states east of the Mississippi River had already accomplished for eight or more years.


Acknowledgement: Game scores retrieved from College Football Data Warehouse were instrumental in putting together the content above.

The date of the first intercollegiate game in the state of Virginia was found in Mel Smith’s Evolvements of Early American Foot Ball: Through the 1890/91 Season. Thanks to Tex Noel for the forward.

  2 Responses to “First Intercollegiate Football Game Played in Each State”

  1. Why was Florida so late to throw its hat into the intercollegiate ring?

  2. That is a very good question, and one I have asked myself without ever finding an answer. I’m assuming that other collegiate sports might have been more popular.

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