1974 playoffs

Ron Schipper receives Walnut and Bronze
Central College coach Ron Schipper receives the Stagg Bowl trophy following the 1974 game.

Stagg Bowl II

Central 10, Ithaca 8
Dec. 7, 1974, in Phenix City, Ala.

By Steve Bergum
Enquirer Sports Writer

PHENIX CITY, Ala. — You can gasp, gawk and shake your head all you want over Central College’s win over Ithaca Saturday. But don’t talk upset.

To Dutchmen defensive tackle Mike Street the Stagg Bowl victory was nothing more than the final chapter to a plan he authored nearly seven months ago.

“From the word go we said we were gonna win it all.” Said a mud-covered, but happy Street after Saturday’s game. “When I went home to work after school last summer, the guys I worked with asked me if I played football. I told them, “Yeah, we’re gonna be national champions. Listen for us.”

It was a courageous prediction coming from a 210 pound defensive tackle from Humeston, Iowa (population 600). But when the scoreboard clock at Municipal Stadium blinked zero late Saturday afternoon, it contained the same clairvoyance that has made people like Jeanne Dixon famous.

Actually, the Dutchmen’s defense left nothing to the occult. They simply charged after Ithaca all afternoon in the same manner they’ve hounded opponents all year.

They stopped every part of Ithaca’s publicized offense, with the exception of an occasional draw play. And even those short bomber gains came as a result of Central’s over aggressiveness.

The only time all day the Dutchmen’s defense did falter came late in the game following a short Central punt.

Ithaca took the ball near midfield and drove down to Central’s six yard line before running into a fourth and one situation.

Right then, with just over a minute left to play, the classic confrontation which has been building up all week took place. Ithaca’s vaunted offense, which averaged 48 points a game during the regular season, needed only 18 inches for a first down inside the five.

Central, the tiny underdog college from Iowa, that no one gave a chance, had to make one more deciding defensive play.

When the ball was snapped every one of the spectators, coaches and players in Municipal Stadium knew who would get the ball – Dave Remick, Ithaca’s stocky fullback and leading rusher, who accounted for over 1,000 yards during the year.

Remick carried the ball. He made six inches. And Central College clinched its first national championship in the school’s history.

Dutchmen linebacker Al Dorenkamp, the most valuable player in the Iowa conference this year recalled the situation facing him and his teammates on the critical fourth down play.

“I told the guys in the huddle that this was the reason that we were here.” He said. “I told them the national title was riding on this play. That was all I said. Because I figured if that didn’t fire them up, nothing would.”

Street, looking back on his thoughts at that moment said, “I told myself, ‘This is it. This is what we’ve been working for all year. We’ve come too far to blow it now.”

The peculiar thing about the crucial play was that Ithaca selected Street’s side of the line to run against. That is like trying to tell Ernest Hemingway how to write an ending for A Farewell to Arms.

Street knew seven months earlier that Dave Remick couldn’t make 18 inches in that particular situation. There was no one going to ruin the ending to Mike Street’s story.

After the game, one of the Stagg Bowl officials shook hands with Street and said, “Congratulations, I hope to see you back next year.”

“Thank you.” Street replied politely, “But I’m a senior. I won’t be back next year.”

With Street, Dorenkamp, quarterback Gary Cutler and a horde of others gone, it’s unlikely that any of the Dutch will return next year. Or ever again for that matter.

But the fact remains that the elusive chance at a small college national football title did present itself for a brief moment to Central College.

And the Dutchmen, who were “too small to play with the big boys,” jumped on it like a loose fumble.

It just came naturally, like Mike Street said it would.

Playoff results

Semifinals
Central 17, at Evansville 16
Ithaca 27, Slippery Rock 14

Stagg Bowl II
Central 10, Ithaca 8, at Phenix City, Ala.

Scoring summary
Team    1 2 3 4  T
Central 3 0 0 7 10
Ithaca  0 3 3 2  8

Central — FG Street 25
Ithaca — FG Markowick 41
Ithaca — FG Markowick 27
Central — Cutler 1 run (Street kick)
Ithaca — Safety (Urbanek ran out of end zone)

Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Coast Guard at Anna Maria
7:00 PM
Defiance at Baldwin Wallace
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Johns Hopkins
7:30 PM
Trine at Manchester
Live Stats
8:00 PM
Millsaps at Belhaven
Sep. 2: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Mass-Dartmouth at Mount Ida
6:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
7:00 PM
Muhlenberg at Wilkes
7:00 PM
N.C. Wesleyan at Stevenson
7:00 PM
Western New England at Springfield
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Fitchburg State at Becker
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
7:00 PM
WPI at MIT
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Salve Regina at Worcester State
7:00 PM
Bridgewater State at Curry
7:00 PM
Morrisville State at St. Lawrence
10:00 PM
Adrian at Pacific
Sep. 3: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Endicott at Framingham State
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Washington U. at Carnegie Mellon
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Chicago at Case Western Reserve
12:00 PM
Husson at Alfred
12:00 PM
SUNY-Maritime at Maine Maritime
Video
12:00 PM
Cortland at Heidelberg
12:00 PM
Otterbein at Buffalo State
12:00 PM
Ursinus at Bethany
12:00 PM
Sewanee at Kenyon
1:00 PM
King's at Moravian
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Kean at Christopher Newport
1:00 PM
McDaniel at Catholic
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Lebanon Valley at Franklin and Marshall
1:00 PM
Plymouth State at Castleton
Live Stats
1:00 PM
RPI at Norwich
1:00 PM
Randolph-Macon at Dickinson
1:00 PM
Oberlin at Kalamazoo
1:00 PM
Emory and Henry at Ferrum
1:00 PM
Wooster at Washington and Jefferson
1:00 PM
Alfred State at William Paterson
1:00 PM
St. Vincent at Alma
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Concordia (Wis.) at Finlandia
1:00 PM
Olivet at St. John Fisher
1:00 PM
Rowan at Widener
1:00 PM
Hobart at Brockport
1:00 PM
Union at Ithaca
1:00 PM
Susquehanna at Lycoming
1:00 PM
Utica at Misericordia
1:00 PM
The Apprentice School at Methodist
1:00 PM
TCNJ at UW-Whitewater
1:30 PM
Wilmington at Bluffton
1:30 PM
Monmouth at Hope
1:30 PM
Bridgewater at Gettysburg
1:30 PM
Muskingum at Waynesburg
1:30 PM
Juniata at Grove City
2:00 PM
Wisconsin Lutheran at Trinity Int'l
2:00 PM
Lakeland at Carroll
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at St. Norbert
2:00 PM
Austin at Hendrix
2:00 PM
Maranatha Baptist at Martin Luther
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Millikin at Greenville
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Eureka at Knox
Live Stats
2:00 PM
MacMurray at Rockford
2:00 PM
Gustavus Adolphus at Westminster (Mo.)
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-La Crosse at Luther
2:00 PM
Beloit at Lake Forest
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at Jamestown
2:00 PM
Crown at Hamline
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Carleton at Macalester
2:00 PM
Bethel at Dubuque
2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
Live Stats
2:00 PM
St. Olaf at Grinnell
2:00 PM
Buena Vista at Mayville St.
2:00 PM
Simpson at UW-Stout
2:00 PM
Aurora at Carthage
2:00 PM
UW-River Falls at Coe
2:00 PM
Ripon at Concordia-Chicago
2:00 PM
Elmhurst at Loras
2:00 PM
Huntingdon at Louisiana College
2:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Robert Morris-Chicago
2:00 PM
Benedictine at Wheaton (Ill.)
2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Oshkosh
2:30 PM
Southern Virginia at Earlham
Live Stats
2:30 PM
Lawrence at Presentation
4:00 PM
UW-Platteville at George Fox
4:00 PM
La Verne at Puget Sound
Video Live Stats
4:00 PM
Central at Whitworth
5:00 PM
Hartwick at Western Connecticut
Live Stats
6:00 PM
Wabash at Albion
6:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.) at Berry
6:00 PM
Augustana at Mount St. Joseph
6:00 PM
Thomas More at Franklin
Live Stats
6:00 PM
Hampden-Sydney at Averett
7:00 PM
Denison at Marietta
7:00 PM
Hiram at Westminster (Pa.)
7:00 PM
Thiel at Allegheny
7:00 PM
Capital at Wittenberg
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Shenandoah at Gallaudet
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Illinois College at Rose-Hulman
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Geneva at Frostburg State
7:00 PM
Nichols at Westfield State
7:00 PM
Greensboro at Guilford
Live Stats
7:00 PM
LaGrange at Birmingham-Southern
7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Southwestern
7:00 PM
Anderson at North Park
7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Mary Hardin-Baylor
7:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Texas Lutheran
7:10 PM
St. Thomas at UW-Eau Claire
Video Live Stats
7:30 PM
Hanover at Centre
8:00 PM
Willamette at Rhodes
8:00 PM
Cornell at Iowa Wesleyan
Live Stats
8:00 PM
Augsburg at Northwestern (Minn.)
Live Stats
8:00 PM
Southwestern Assemblies at Howard Payne
8:00 PM
Sul Ross State at UT-Permian Basin
8:30 PM
Redlands at Trinity (Texas)
Dec. 18: All times Eastern
Final
Mount Union 49, at St. Thomas 35
@ Salem, Va.
Box Score Recap Recap Photos