The Players

They Fought Like Wildcats Centennial (1914-2014): Talents of 1914 football Varsity went well beyond playing field

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Three members of the storied 1914 football team (Asa Porter, Charles Beach and Albert Condron) took part in a popular play in April of the 1914-15 school year (The Desert Yearbook photo)

Three members of the storied 1914 football team (Asa Porter, Charles Beach and Albert Condron) took part in a popular play in April of the 1914-15 school year (The Desert Yearbook photo)

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TABLE OF CONTENTS:
General history
J.F. “Pop” McKale
The games
Comparisons then and now
Wildcats nickname
Military service
Rankings
The players

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Clipping of actual L.A. Times article published Nov. 8, 1914

Clipping of actual L.A. Times article published Nov. 8, 1914

Excerpt from L.A. Times, Nov. 8, 1914, authored by Bill Henry:

“Arizona’s cactus-fed athletes, despite heroic efforts on the part of their two halfbacks, (Asa) Porter and (Franklin) Luis, went down to defeat before the Occidental Tigers yesterday afternoon, the tally with all precincts heard from being 14 to 0 in favor of the Tigers.
Confident of rolling up a big score, the Tigers took the field with grins on their faces, but before the game was 10 seconds old they knew they had a battle on their hands.
The Arizona men showed the fight of wild cats and displayed before the public gaze a couple of little shrimps in the backfield who defied all attempts of the Tigers to stop them.”

This site will conduct a countdown in a 100-day period, leading up to Arizona’s 2014 football season-opener with UNLV on Aug. 29 at Arizona Stadium. The 100 Days ‘Til Kickoff countdown will include information daily about the historic 1914 Arizona team that helped create the school’s nickname of “Wildcats” because of how they played that fateful day against Occidental.

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Arizona Hall of Famer Asa Porter lettered for the football, basketball, baseball, track and tennis teams in 1914-15 ... and also acted in a play

Arizona Hall of Famer Asa Porter lettered for the football, basketball, baseball, track and tennis teams in 1914-15 … and also acted in a play

In this series of the historic 1914 Arizona football team we have learned of the broad-based talents of all of the players, which translated into unprecedented success on the field for first-year coach J.F. “Pop” McKale.

Albert Condron, a junior left tackle, was one of the most distinguished, coming up with the idea of “A” Mountain, serving as an editor of the student newspaper and becoming student body president in 1915-16.

Condron, a civil engineering student, was also an accomplished actor in Arizona’s theater group. He and fellow junior teammates Charles Beach and Asa Porter took part in a play titled “Trelawney of the Wells” in the same school year the Varsity became the Wildcats.

The Desert Yearbook gave Condron, Beach and Porter rave reviews.

“A.H. Condron, as James Telfer, handled his part like an ‘old hand'”.

“C.P. Beach, as Ferdinand Gadd was good. He acted as though he was truly unconscious of an audience.”

Wainwright Randall, as Augustus Colpoys; Asa Porter, as Mr. Ablett, the grocer; and John Hedgpeth, as O’Dwyer, the prompter, furnished the comedy parts and they did a most excellent job of furnishing.”

Lawrence Richard Jackson, a 1914 football standout, was part of the play “The Man From Home” conducted by seniors that same school year.

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THE LAST WEEK IN THE SERIES:

No. 19: Emzy Lynch family member recalls peculiar prediction by great uncle
No. 20: Two 1914 Varsity football members part of student newspaper staff
No. 21: Development of fraternity life significant 100 years ago
No. 22: University of Arizona’s seal among firsts of 100 years ago
No. 23: Rifle popular sport in 1914, football player captained teams
No. 24: 1914 team members part of required military program on campus
No. 25: More 1914 love for the “Wild Cat”

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Caption here

The 1914 Arizona football team that earned the honor of being named the first “Wildcats” was composed of (front row, left to right): Verne La Tourette, George Seeley, Leo Cloud, Richard Meyer, Asa Porter. Second row: Franklin Luis, Lawrence Jackson, Ray Miller, J.F. “Pop” McKale (coach), Turner Smith, Harry Hobson (manager), Orville McPherson, Albert Crawford, Ernest Renaud. Back row: Albert Condron, Emzy Lynch, Charley Beach, Vinton Hammels, Bill Hendry, George Clawson, Harry Turvey.
(AllSportsTucson.com graphic/Photo from University of Arizona Library Special Collections)

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What they were talking about on this day in 1914

Tuesday, Aug. 11, 1914

President Woodrow Wilson attends the burial of his wife Ellen Axson Wilson in Rome, Ga., in a downpour of rain. An Associated Press report of the funeral depicts Wilson as very shaken by the loss of the First Lady, who died from Bright’s disease at age 54. “The president stood with his head bowed, as the final rites were performed,” the AP report reads. “As he stood there with his daughters, Mr. Wilson made no effort to conceal his grief. As the hushed voice of the preacher read the burial service, the president’s form was visibly shaken by emotion and tears streamed down his cheeks. Others of the party wept silently and softly.”

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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He also writes articles for Bleacher Report and Lindy’s College Sports.

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