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Remembering history: Rutgers plays Princeton in 1st ever intercollegiate football game on Nov. 6, 1869

Rutgers and Princeton played in the first-ever intercollegiate football game on the College Avenue campus on Nov. 6, 1869. – Photo by Special Collections and University Archives /

Every college across the U.S. has a unique part of its culture that it is proud of.

For Rutgers, it's being considered "The Birthplace of College Football."

You can see it on the field walls of SHI Stadium on Busch campus. You can read it on the plaque just outside of the College Avenue Gym, signifying the exact plot of land behind the gym where the Scarlet Knights took down Princeton 6-4 in the first-ever intercollegiate football game on Nov. 6, 1869.

This football game represented 1 of 3 games between Rutgers and the Tigers. The rules were similar to those of rugby as both sides looked to score single points "by throwing a round black-rubber ball over a rope tied between two goal posts," according to a Rutgers Today article.

It is important to note that The Daily Targum was on the scene for the game, covering how the game was played as well as documenting the experience of the 100 or so fans in attendance. The game was described by the Targum as "headlong running, wild shouting and frantic kicking."

The course of football in the U.S. changed in New Brunswick on this day in 1869. Without this clash between Rutgers and Princeton, the game of football that has swept the nation, professionally and collegiately, would never be the same.

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