What I’m Currently reading
The Big Scrum: How Teddy Roosevelt Saved Football by John J Miller
Objecting to football’s brutality Progressive Era reformers tried to regulate the sport out of existence. President Teddy Roosevelt stepped in and helped negotiate new rules that saved the game.
So far this book is extremely well written, and a great entry level resource about the history of college football and Teddy Roosevelt. So far there are no references to Minnesota football but I imagine Gopher coach Dr. Williams will be referenced as he was one of the people who worked with the president on these reforms.
The 50 Best* College Football Teams of All Time (*The most interesting, innovative, and influential, anyway) By Bill Connelly
Bill C. does a great job of following the seasons of 50 very interesting teams starting with 1906 Chicago and going up through 2013 Auburn. His look at this is both interestingly regional and national.
Minnesota’s 1940 team is included! I haven’t ready that chapter yet as I’m trying to go through the book chronologically. Bill C. is da man.
King Football: Sport and Spectacle in the Golden Age of Radio and Newsreels, Movies and Magazines, the Weekly and the Daily Press by Mike Oriard
This is some real nerd shit. I’m only a few pages in but I fully expect to read about a lot of Minnesota content.
What I’ve Just finished
Reading Football How the Popular Press Created an American Spectacle by Michael Oriard
This is some grad level reading. Michael Oriard is a professors professor and takes a very interesting subject, the origins of college football and the press’ role in its ascension, and runs right into the weeds with it.
I thought it was great but it’s not a quick, easy, fun read.
100 Things Minnesota Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die by Brian Murphy
Pioneer Press journalist Brian Murphy is coming in hot with his take on Gopher fandom. I haven’t gotten my hands on this yet so I can’t say much about it, other than I’m interested in seeing how many of the 100 I’ve already done (probably all of them).