|1925 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets football|
|1925 record||6–2–1 (4–1–1 SoCon)|
|Head coach||William Alexander (6th season)|
|Assistant coach||Don Miller|
|Assistant coach||Bill Fincher|
|Offensive scheme||Jump shift|
|Home stadium||Grant Field|
|1925 Southern Conference football standings|
|Washington and Lee||5||–||1||–||0||5||–||5||–||0|
The 1925 Georgia Tech Golden Tornado football team[note 1] represented the Georgia Tech Golden Tornado of the Georgia Institute of Technology during the 1925 Southern Conference football season. The Tornado was coached by William Alexander in his 6th year as head coach, compiling a record of 6–2–1. The team was captained by Doug Wycoff. It had one of the best defenses in school history.
Before the season
1925 saw the south's widespread use of the forward pass. Coach William Alexander was a Heisman protege and utilized his "jump shift". Don Miller of Four Horsemen fame assisted Alexander in the backfield, and former star Tech tackle Bill Fincher assisted with the line.
Triple threat Doug Wycoff, mentioned for All-American by Lawrence Perry at the end of last year, was elected captain of the 1925 team, having been "the outstanding back of the South for the past two years." Coach Alexander called him "the best player ever to wear a cleat for Georgia Tech."
|September 26||Oglethorpe*||Grant Field • Atlanta, GA||W 13–7|
|October 3||VMI||Grant Field • Atlanta, GA||W 33–0|
|October 10||vs. Penn State*||Yankee Stadium • Bronx, NY||W 16–7||8,000|
|October 17||Florida||Grant Field • Atlanta, GA||W 23–7|
|October 24||Alabama||Grant Field • Atlanta, GA||L 7–0||20,000|
|October 31||Notre Dame*||Grant Field • Atlanta, GA||L 13–0|
|November 7||Vanderbilt||Dudley Field • Nashville, TN||W 7–0|
|November 14||Georgia||Grant Field • Atlanta, GA (Rivalry)||W 3–0||35,000|
|November 26||Auburn||Grant Field • Atlanta, GA (Rivalry)||T 7–7|
Week 1: Oglethorpe
The season opened with a 13–7 defeat of Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (SIAA) champion Oglethorpe.[note 2] Neither team scored in the first quarter, but in the second Wycoff went over for a 4-yard touchdown. The second Tech score came in the final quarter, when Carter Barron ran it in from 6 yards out following a long drive. A forward pass, Walsh to Campbell, got Oglethorpe's touchdown.
The starting lineup was Merkle (left end), Tharpe (left tackle), Godwin (left guard), Poole (center), Forrester (right guard), Carpenter (right tackle), Marshall (right end), Williams (quarterback), Barron (left halfback), Wycoff (right halfback), S. Murray (fullback).
Week 2: V. M. I.
Tech beat VMI 33–0. In the second quarter, a pass from Murray to Wycoff added 24 yards. Carter Barron got it in from the 1-yard line some plays later. The next touchdown drive was highlighted by a 34-yard touchdown run. Murray scored yet another touchdown. A 26-yard pass was caught by Johnny Marshall, and Tech drove down to the 1-yard line when the final quarter started. Ike Williams went across for a touchdown. With substitutes in the backfield for most of the final period, John Brewer scored a touchdown on another triple pass play, this time from the 6-yard line.
The starting lineup was Irwin (left end), Tharpe (left tackle), Godwin (left guard), Poole (center), Forrester (right guard), Carpenter (right tackle), Marshall (right end), Williams (quarterback), Barron (left halfback), Wycoff (right halfback), S. Murray (fullback).
Week 3: vs. Penn State
The third week brought the highlight of the year — a defeat of Hugo Bezdek's previously undefeated Penn State Nittany Lions 16–7 in a howling wind in Yankee Stadium. Tech utilized its shift on nearly every play. Penn State scored first after a punt by Doug Wycoff into the wind gave them the ball at Tech's 30-yard line. From here, Penn State threw a forward pass from a cross buck formation. Dangerfield shook off three tacklers on his way to the goal just as the half ended.
A similar thing happened to start the second half and give Tech its score. Penn State's Gray got off a bad punt into the wind, nearly over his own goal line. Using its shift to perfection, Wycoff eventually got over the tying touchdown. After a fumble recovery, an 80-yard drive utilizing Wycoff and Sam Murray ended in a Carter Barron touchdown for the third score. After an interception, Ike Williams also added a 25-yard field goal.
The starting lineup was Marshall (left end), Tharpe (left tackle), Godwin (left guard), Poole (center), Forrester (right guard), Carpenter (right tackle), Merkle (right end), Williams (quarterback), Wycoff (left halfback), Barron (right halfback), S. Murray (fullback).
Week 4: Florida
Doug Wycoff scored two touchdowns. Wycoff scored first, and Ike Williams added the extra point. In the second period, Williams made a 12-yard field goal. Wycoff and Sam Murray scored in the third period, with one extra point converted by Williams.
The starting lineup was Merkle (left end), Carpenter (left tackle), Forrester (left guard), Poole (center), Godwin (right guard), Tharpe (right tackle), Marshall (right end), Williams (quarterback), Wycoff (left halfback), Barron (right halfback), S. Murray (fullback).
Week 5: Alabama
The national champion Alabama Crimson Tide beat Georgia Tech 7–0 on a Johnny Mack Brown punt return for a touchdown. Pooley Hubert cleared two Tech players out of the way. "Hubert played the greatest game of his career and was called the greatest defensive back ever to appear on Grant Field". Tech turned the ball over on downs at the Alabama 28 and again at the Alabama 21. Star tackle Six Carpenter was injured. Tech was the only team all year to rush for more yardage and gain more first downs than Alabama.
The starting lineup was Merkle (left end), Tharpe (left tackle), Godwin (left guard), Poole (center), Forrester (right guard), Carpenter (right tackle), Marshall (right end), Williams (quarterback), Wycoff (left halfback), Barron (right halfback), S. Murray (fullback).
Week 6: Notre Dame
Resembling its old form, Knute Rockne's defending national champion Notre Dame Fighting Irish defeated Georgia Tech 13–0. The game was played in a cold rain, and Tech played its substitutes aside from Walt Godwin. All scores were made in the first half.
The starting lineup was Irwin (left end), Hood (left tackle), Godwin (left guard), Elliott (center), Angley (right guard), Hearn (right tackle), Crowley (right end), Morse (quarterback), Connelly (left halfback), Brewer (right halfback), Holland (fullback).
Week 7: at Vanderbilt
Describing the most spectacular play he ever saw, coach William Alexander cites one from the 1925 game against the Vanderbilt Commodores. Wycoff was hurt, such that he elected to use his substitute Dick Wright with only minutes to go in the game. On a muddy field, Wright ran off tackle and dodged Vanderbilt's safety Gil Reese, "usually a sure tackler," to get the touchdown with a run to give Tech a 7–0 victory. The yearbook remarked, Wright "should have run for governor of Georgia right after he ran 56 yards against Vandy."
The starting lineup was Merkle (left end), Tharpe (left tackle), Godwin (left guard), Poole (center), Forrester (right guard), Cooper (right tackle), Marshall (right end), Williams (quarterback), Wycoff (left halfback), Barron (right halfback), S. Murray (fullback)
Week 8: Georgia
Rivals Georgia and Georgia Tech met for the first time since 1916. Quarterback Ike Williams thought the game clock read five seconds remaining in the third quarter when in actuality it was five minutes. Williams set up his offense for a field goal and kicked it to put Tech up 3–0 on first down. Luckily for Williams, Tech won 3–0. Georgia tried all kinds of forward passes in desperation.
Georgia end Smack Thompson would yell out in his sleep, and had said "Kill the SOB" in reference to Doug Wycoff leading up to the game. Once during the game, the two collided with each other, knocking each unconscious.
The starting lineup was Merckle (left end), Tharpe (left tackle), Godwin (left guard), Poole (center), Forrester (right guard), Fair (right tackle), Marshall (right end), Williams (quarterback), Wycoff (left halfback), Barron (right halfback), S. Murray (fullback).
Week 9: Auburn
Awards and honors
Doug Wycoff received 21 of a possible 32 first-team All-Southern selections of the Associated Press composite. Center Owen Poole got six. Guard Walt Godwin also made some All-Southern teams, and tackle Six Carpenter made second-team All-Southern for Norman E. Brown.
Coach Alexander recalled "The work of Douglas Wycoff against Notre Dame two years in succession was brilliant in the extreme, as was his plunging against Penn. State when we defeated them twice." Morgan Blake, sports writer for the Atlanta Journal, said of an all-time All-Southern list: "It seems to us that one name is left out in this collection, who may have been the best all-around player the South has had.
"We have reference to Doug Wycoff of Tech who, for three straight years, was practically the unanimous all-Southern football choice, despite the fact that Georgia Tech had very lean years during his period of play at this institution. If Wycoff had been flanked by such a pair of halfbacks as Red Barron and Buck Flowers, or Thomason and Mizell while he was with the Jackets, he would have been an all-American. As it was he had to carry all of the offensive load and on the defense he was a wheelhorse. He was a great punter and passer. If Wycoff was not the best all-around player the South had produced then he was very close to the peak."
The following chart depicts Tech's lineup during the 1925 season with games started at the position shown in parenthesis. The chart mimics the offense after the jump shift has taken place.
|64||Tom Angley||Guard||1||Baltimore, Maryland||University School||5'8"||190||21|
|5||Six Carpenter||Tackle||4||Newnan, Georgia|
|21||Ed Crowley||End||1||Watkinsville, Georgia||6'1"||180||19|
|53||Dick Fair||Tackle||1||Atlanta, Georgia|
|15||Wally Forrester||Guard||5||Leesburg, Georgia||Gordon Institute|
|49||Bull Irwin||End||2||Atlanta, Georgia|
|54||Johnny Marshall||End||5||Jacksonville, Florida||Duval High School||21|
|13||Owen Poole||Center||5||Boys High School||155|
|24||Mack Tharpe||Tackle||4||Moultrie, Georgia||22|
|2||Ken Thrash||Tackle||Orlando, Florida||19|
|1||Carter Barron||Halfback||6||Clarkesville, Georgia||20|
|19||John Brewer||Quarterback, halfback||1||Griffin, Georgia||6'0"||185||19|
|33||Vaughan Connelly||Halfback||1||Atlanta, Georgia|
|62||Ralph Holland||Fullback||1||Atlanta, Georgia|
|39||Ike Williams||Quarterback||5||Little Rock, Arkansas||Central H. S.||5'10"||180||22|
|70||Dick Wright||Halfback||Sumter, South Carolina|
|27||Doug Wycoff||Halfback||8||Little Rock, Arkansas||Central H. S.||6'2"||195||22|
- 1925 Southern Conference football season
- 1925 College Football All-Southern Team
- 1925 College Football All-America Team
- Although Georgia Tech's teams are officially known as the "Yellow Jackets", northern writers called the team the "Golden Tornado" in 1917; the name was commonly used until 1928 and for many years afterwards as an alternate nickname. It may have been coined by Morgan Blake.
- Tech was in the SIAA before 1922.
- Van Brimmer & Rice 2011, p. 147
- "Golden Tornadoes". Retrieved January 28, 2015.
- Blue Print. 1926.
- "Shaping College Football". google.com.
- "Golden Tornado Swamps Cadets". The Index-Journal. October 4, 1925. p. 6. Retrieved May 3, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "1925 Football Captains". The Stanford Daily. 68. October 27, 1925.
- "1925 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Schedule and Results".
- "Georgia Tech Opens Season With Victory". The Anniston Star. September 27, 1925. p. 8. Retrieved May 3, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- Woodruff 1928, p. 71
- "Ga. Tech Easy Victory In Penn Battle At N. Y". Florence Morning News. p. 11. Retrieved April 29, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Southerners, In Howling Gale, Beat Penn State, Until Now Undefeated". Waco News-Tribune. October 11, 1925. p. 13. Retrieved April 29, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- Raymond Schmidt (2007). Shaping College Football: The Transformation of an American Sport, 1919-1930. Syracuse University Press. p. 90.
- George Trevor (October 11, 1925). "Penn State's Logy Team Stung By Swarming Horde of Yellowjackets". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. p. 13. Retrieved April 29, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- Ray Schmidt (1998). "The Golden Tornado" (PDF). College Football Historical Society. 11 (3): 15. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
- "Golden Tornado Sweeps Over Penn State 16 to 7 in A Hurricane". Anniston Star. October 11, 1925. p. 8. Retrieved April 29, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Florida 'Gators Lose Hard Battle". The Index-Journal. October 18, 1925. p. 7. Retrieved September 4, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- Universal Service (October 18, 1925). "Florida Beaten In Great Battle By Gold Tornado". St. Petersburg Times.
- "Two Year Deadlock With Florida 'Gators Broken By Georgia Tech, 23 to 7". The Anniston Star. October 18, 1925. p. 8. Retrieved September 5, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- 1925 Alabama recap
- "Alabama Wins 7 to 0, Brown Scores In Third After Punt By Wycoff". Anniston Star. October 25, 1925. p. 10. Retrieved May 3, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Legends of Alabama Football".
- "Notre Dame Rushes 13-0 Win Over In First Half". The Decatur Herald. November 1, 1925. p. 23. Retrieved May 3, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Notre Dame "Comes Back"; Downs Georgia Tech, 13 To 0". Zanesville Times Signal. November 1, 1925. p. 13. Retrieved September 5, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Notre Dame Battles Georgia Tech Eleven". The Evening News. October 31, 1925. p. 1. Retrieved April 29, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Notre Dame Backs Skirt Jackets Ends To Win 13-0". The Technique. November 6, 1925. p. 4.
- W. A. Alexander (1926). "Forty-Five Yards for Georgia Tech" (PDF). Kansas City Star.
- "Golden Tornado Wins From Vandy". The Index-Journal. November 8, 1925. p. 6. Retrieved January 3, 2017 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Ike Williams Saves Day By Kick In Third". The Anniston Star. November 15, 1925. p. 8. Retrieved March 3, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "'Froggy' Started March of Great Quarterbacks", Atlanta Journal-Constitution, pp. 3B, September 10, 1933
- Davis J. Walsh (November 27, 1925). "Wash. State And Ala. May Be Opponents". Journal Gazette. p. 7. Retrieved April 29, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Jackets and Tigers Fight to 7-7 Score In Annual Thanksgiving Classic". The Technique. November 27, 1925.
- Ed White (November 25, 1926). "Gleanings From Grant Field". The Technique.
- "All Southern Grid Team Compiled By The Associated Press". Kingsport Times. November 30, 1925.
- e. g. "All-Southern Team of Stars". Harrisburg Telegraph. November 28, 1925. p. 13. Retrieved March 3, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- Norman E. Brown (December 5, 1925). "Flournoy Best Kicker; Hubert The Cleverest Field General". The Daily News. p. 3. Retrieved March 3, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- W. A. Alexander (1926). "Forty-Five Yards for Georgia Tech" (PDF). Kansas City Star.
- "Famous Footballers". Times-Picayune. January 30, 1932.
- "Technique [Volume 15, Issue 08]".
- Van Brimmer, Adam; Rice, Homer (2011). 100 Things Yellow Jackets Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die. Chicago: Triumph Books. ISBN 978-1-61749-703-2.
- Woodruff, Fuzzy (1928). A History of Southern Football 1890–1928. 3.