Chapter 55

About That Offsides Play At Harvard  

The story about the famous Centre-Harvard game wouldn't be complete without relating something that happened nearly 20 years later.

Haskell Short wrote the following story which appeared in the now merged Danville "Advocate-Messenger" on August 20, 1941.

Startled, we'll say we were when a man walked into the office this morning and said he was a former Harvard football player- the man who was responsible for Centre beating Harvard twenty years ago this fall.

Now we have always believed it was Bo McMillin, Army Armstrong, Ed Kubale, Red Roberts and others who were responsible for the 6-0 victory by the Colonels which was played up by papers all over the world, but after listening to the former player, we are inclined to believe he did have something to do with that history-making performance for the boys who wore the Gold and White.

Before we tell you the story, let us introduce the man. He is Richard Field who played end for Harvard in 1921 and is now living in Cincinnati. At present, he and Mrs. Field are vacationing at Ashley's Camp on Lake Herrington.

Richard Field was a junior end on the 1921 Harvard team

Ashley's Camp on Herrington Lake just north of Danville where Richard Field fished while vacationing

A cabin at Ashley's Camp

Mr. Field said that late in the final quarter of the game, he made a desperate tackle of McMillin, but that Bo hit him so hard he was addled.

Then minutes later, Harvard was in possession of the ball and making a determined effort to get the ball across the Centre goal line and had moved the ball down to near the Colonels' 30 yard stripe.

As the game faded into its final moments, Buell of Harvard threw a beautiful pass to Churchill who was downed on Centre's 3- yard line. But poor, addled Dick Field was called offsides, and the ball had to be brought back.

Dick didn't know about that until the next day when he woke up in the hospital where he was taken following an injury that he suffered on the play.

Mr. Field said the game was one of the hardest he had ever taken part in or witnessed.

"But despite all the intense rivalry and hard playing by the two teams, I have never seen a more sportsmanlike athletic event of any kind," said Mr. Field. "One side would tear down the field like all heck to encounter the other, but after the whistle blew, you would see the boys picking each other up.

Since coming to Cincinnati, Mr. Field had a chance to know Bo McMillin and Red Roberts better. He remembered them from the game well enough, but since then has seen them at various places and they have become warm friends. He said the three of them had often discussed the game and the offsides play which probably saved the game for the Colonels.

And now you know the reason that Dick Field tells his wife that, "Kentucky owes me a lot,each summer when he packs up his fishing equipment and heads for Herrington Lake for his annual fishing trip.

                                                                   The team that beat Harvard helped by "that offsides play"