In , the citizens of Pottsville petitioned the NFL to reexamine the case against their defunct Maroons. Then-commissioner Pete Rozelle formed a committee on the subject and put it to a league vote the following year. The Maroons and their fans were denied by a margin. The matter remained dormant for four decades until Rendell, an avid football fan, did research on the subject and spoke with league owners and officials. The project resulted in Rendell making an in-person appeal.
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My plea was not to take the title away from the Cardinals, even though the Maroons beat them in the championship game, but to make them co-champions with the Cardinals that year. Bidwell, who was the owner at the Cardinals [the grandson of Charles], was the main opponent. It failed.
November 26th - Pottsville 31, Green Bay 0
It was a great injustice. With each passing year, the hopes of Pottsville continue to dwindle. Eventually the town will be far enough removed that its days as an NFL city are more folklore than fact. Still, there are those who believe firmly in the cause of recognition.
They crushed the Cardinals in a game played in Chicago, and then they went and established cred for beating Notre Dame. The NFL should have been happy because that was the first step convincing people that the NFL was better than college football. On Sept. Paul Ideals Teams often joined and folded within a few years, if not months. Most were from small towns, with players routinely jumping from one team to the next in order to make an extra hundred dollars in a weekend. During the first decade of NFL play, there were a staggering 44 franchises which played in at least one season.
The games resembled a rugby scrum more than anything seen today, with the forward pass legal but rarely used. In , the entire team league threw 31 touchdown passes. This was the world five franchises joined in One was the New York Giants.
Another was the Pottsville Maroons. On occasion, teams played against high school and college opponents, with teams mocking up their own schedules. It was pro only because guys got paid. It was a loosely-structured situation. It had very few rules and standards. Teams would spring up and play for one year and go away. Players would come and go. They would just leave and go somewhere else and play for a few teams simultaneously, playing under one name for one team and then another name for another team.
No photos of it exist. In both the immediate and elongated aftermath, Pottsville remains shortchanged. The Maroons were reinstated by Carr before the season, but they were never the same. After going and finishing in third place that year, things went south. Pottsville went in before limping to a mark in , its final season with the Maroons. The franchise folded the following year after a forgettable campaign as the Boston Bulldogs.
For now, all is quiet on the Pottsville front. Yet the year-old still receives a hard copy of the local newspaper, the Pottsville Republican , at his residence in Columbia, South Carolina. Everyone that lives in Pottsville is proud and proud of what happened. Certainly I would be happy for them. They earn almost no mention as one of the great teams to ever play, coming well before television and radio broadcasts of the league. The only difference is the controversy that endures, albeit only in a small swatch of America.
With the passing of time, the true champion has been left in the dust, buried beneath decades of ambivalence from the NFL. For those who are, it seems a moot point to fight over a trophy given to the wrong team almost years ago. The illegitimate champion is still playing with a banner of lies hanging above its field.
The deserving has faded into oblivion, with its town being just another stop on Interstate Almost all pass by on their way to a larger city, something not hard to find. The former NFL king has just 14, inhabitants, according to the U. Now the fight quietly rages through the night, with a sleepy town from a bygone era seeking justice for its team. The spirit to continue fighting remains a source of pride for the people of Pottsville, even if all around them have moved on. Matt Verderame, 30, is a national NFL writer and longform scribe. He appreciates a good run between the tackles.
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Pottsville, Pa. and Cardinals each claim rights to 1925 NFL title
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He also relates the importance of the team to the town. It was the one common element between the poorest of the poor, the hard working coal miners, and the wealthy owners of the mines and other establishments. This team was the one thing the entire town could rally around.
It gave the very hard working denizens of Pottsville something to look forward to.
Stirring the Pottsville Maroons Echoes One More Time
And of course the team itself is just absolutely fascinating. It was a motley group of men with some great players and a dedicated coach who had a year that should have crowned them in perpetuity as champions of the football world. This book walks us through the entire seasons with the context of previous seasons mixed in so we understand just where the Pottsville Maroons stood.
They only lost two games that year but they avenged each close loss later in the season with convincing blowout wins over the Providence Steam Rollers and the Frankford Yellow Jackets.