SuperGuide: Michigan Neutral Site Game history

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on July 25th, 2017 at 9:12 PM

As the start of Fall camp nears and the season opener is at a neutral site, here is the complete history of Michigan in neutral site games.

Below is the complete history of Michigan in non-postseason neutral site games. We know most bowl games are neutral site games, so I omitted those since that data is easy to find.

Michigan is 18-14-2 all-time in regular season neutral site games.

Unless another money grabber AD comes along, it's hard to imagine when we will play in another one of these. Went 62 years between the last ones.

Date Opponent Result Location
5/30/1879 Racine W 1-0 Chicago, IL
11/1/1879 Toronto T 0-0 Detroit, MI
11/16/1889 Cornell L 0-56 Buffalo, NY
11/15/1890 Cornell L 5-20 Detroit, MI
11/21/1891 Cornell L 12-58 Detroit, MI
11/28/1891 Cornell L 0-10 Chicago, IL
10/12/1892 Michigan Athletic Assoc. W 68-0 Detroit, MI
10/22/1892 DePauw W 18-0 Indianapolis, IN
10/29/1892 Northwestern L 8-10 Chicago, IL
11/12/1892 Chicago W 18-10 Toledo, OH
11/22/1892 Cornell L 10-30 Detroit, MI
11/25/1893 Kansas W 22-0 Kansas City, MO
11/10/1894 Kansas W 22-12 Kansas City, MO
11/24/1894 Cornell W 12-4 Detroit, MI
11/23/1895 Minnesota W 20-0 Detroit, MI
10/31/1896 Lehigh W 40-0 Detroit, MI
11/13/1897 Minnesota W 14-0 Detroit, MI
11/12/1898 Illinois W 12-5 Detroit, MI
11/4/1899 Virginia W 38-0 Detroit, MI
11/30/1899 Wisconsin L 5-17 Chicago, IL
10/27/1900 Illinois W 12-0 Chicago, IL
11/2/1901 Carlisle W 22-0 Detroit, MI
11/28/1901 Iowa W 50-0 Chicago, IL
10/18/1902 Notre Dame W 23-0 Toledo, OH
11/1/1902 Wisconsin W 6-0 Chicago, IL
10/19/1907 Wabash W 22-0 Indianapolis, IN
11/7/1925 Northwestern L 2-3 Chicago, IL
10/30/1926 Navy L 0-10 Baltimore, MD
11/10/1928 Navy T 6-6 Baltimore, MD
10/31/1945 #1 Army West Point L 7-28 New York, NY
11/10/1945 #4 Navy L 7-33 Baltimore, MD
10/14/1950 #1 Army West Point L 6-27 New York, NY
9/1/2012 #2 Alabama L 14-41 Arlington, TX




July 25th, 2017 at 9:47 PM ^

the 1894 Cornell game, since it was 12-4.  Cornell actually scored a touchdown in the game, but missed the extra point.  Also, weirdly enough, Michigan traveled to Cornell earlier in that year and lost 22-0.  And in a thriller to close the 1894 season, Michigan beat the University of Chicago 6-4.  

Mr. Elbel

July 25th, 2017 at 9:47 PM ^

Wow. Busy day. There's officially no labeled OT posts (though the ole miss one probably should include it) on the first page. Bravo everyone. Great board day.


July 26th, 2017 at 1:15 AM ^

The 1925 team went 7-1 with the only blemish that loss to NW. Michigan scored 227 points that season, and gave up only 3. Yep, that's right—Michigan shut out every other opponent that year. 


"The 1925 Michigan Wolverines football team represented the University of Michigan in the 1925 Big Ten Conference football season. The 1925 season was Fielding H. Yost's 24th as the head football coach. Michigan compiled a 7–1 record and outscored opponents by a combined score of 227 to 3. The 1925 team won the Big Ten Conference championship and was ranked second in country (tied with Alabama) behind Dartmouth in the Dickinson System rankings.

The only points allowed by the team were in a 3 to 2 loss to Northwestern in a game played in a heavy rainstorm on a field covered in mud five or six inches deep in some places. Michigan shut out seven of its eight opponents and allowed only four first downs in the last three games of the season.

Quarterback Benny Friedman and left end Bennie Oosterbaan, sometimes referred to as "The Benny-to-Bennie Show," were both consensus All-Americans and became known as one of the greatest passing combinations in college football history. Friedman finished second in close voting for the 1925 Chicago Tribune Silver Football trophy, which is awarded to the Most Valuable Player in the Big Ten. Both Friedman and Oosterbaan were later inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. Team captain and center Robert J. Brown and guard Tom Edwards also received first-team All-American honors from some selectors.

At the end of the season, Yost called the 1925 Michigan team "the greatest football team I ever coached" and "the greatest football team I ever saw in action."[1] He continued to maintain that the 1925 squad was his greatest team even years later. The team was retroactively named as a 1925 co-national champion by MIT statistician Jeff Sagarin."

Entire season recap here:


All Michigan fans should know about Benny Friedman:

Friedman's high school was Cleveland Glenville, also attended by Willie Henry, Frank Clark, and Pierre Woods.


July 26th, 2017 at 8:53 AM ^

There is an excellent account of this game, and the entire 1925 season, in Robert Soderstrom's book "The Big House".  (He's the guy that gives the alumni assoc. Michigan Stadium tours.)

That game was a total aberration.  But that's why they play them.

There was only one first down the entire game, a 14 yard run by Michigan.  Michigan threw only one pass in the game despite their passing proficiency that year.  It was incomplete.  

It was a lot like the Snow Bowl game in Columbus in 1950.




July 26th, 2017 at 1:21 AM ^

In the aftermath of Michigan's 1925 loss to NW, via wiki:

Controversy over Big Ten Championship

At the end of the season, Michigan and Northwestern each had one loss to conference opponents. However, Northwestern also lost two non-conference games. When it was reported that Coach Yost had given gold footballs emblematic of championship to members of his team, a riot broke out involving 1,200 Northwestern students in Evanston, Illinois. An abandoned fraternity house was set on fire, and firemen who tried to extinguish the fire were thrown aside and their fire hoses were cut. A large bonfire was also built in the middle of Fountain Square. When the mayor of Evanston tried to calm the crowd, he was slugged, and the automobile of the police chief was overturned and damaged. One police officer was disarmed and "so badly mauled that two ribs were broken." Evanston police fired "tear bombs" into the crowd, and the mayor threatened to order police to "shoot and shoot to kill" if such a disorder was repeated.

On the day after the riot, Northwestern's head coach and team captain sent a telegram to University of Michigan president C. C. Little disavowing any claim by Northwestern to the Big Ten football championship. They wrote: "In view of the remarkable showing that has been made by the 1925 football team of the University of Michigan, we believe that the University of Michigan is entitled to sole and undivided honors in the conference, and we wish you to know that Northwestern makes no claim for any share in them, but regards it as a privilege to be even for a few minutes placed in a class with the University of Michigan's team." Following the announcement, Evanston police continued to guard Northwestern's football field to prevent the burning of the wooden stands. The forces dispatched to the stands included a car mounted with a machine gun.


July 26th, 2017 at 9:15 AM ^

WD,  Been meaning to ask this for a while.  I seem to recall seeing you live in Shelby Township (as do I).  By chance, is your house near Shelby Road?  On game day Saturdays, the house I am thinking of is often decked out in full M gear, including a large inflatable.  I always smile at the maize and blue enthusiasm exhibited by this homeowner.


July 26th, 2017 at 12:40 PM ^

Throw in Michigan having a losing record in bowl games and it really seems like neutral site games are not our thing historically.


July 26th, 2017 at 1:08 PM ^

Hard to call Army in NYC, Navy in Baltimore, and Northwestern in Chicago "neutral site".  Even Wabash in Indianapolis is a stretch on what I'd consider neutral site.


Looks like the last true neutral site game before the 'Bama in Jerryworld game was Wisconsin in Chicago back in aught two.


July 27th, 2017 at 12:14 PM ^

Several years ago I was messing around with all-time records of UM vs other teams, and Cornell really stood out. It's the only team we've played appreciably sub-.500 against (6-12). It would just take scheduling a few double-headers against Cornell to set things straight.