The First Intercollegiate Game

College Football Game


Title: Artist: Year of Release:
The First Intercollegiate Game Arnold Friberg 1998   year of issue


Signed & Numbered Unframed Paper    Unframed Print
Image Size:Edition Size Original Issue Price Our Price
18" x 29"   1,500 S/N $275.00 Wanted
 Please add $19.50 for shipping, handling, and insurance.


Signed & Numbered Framed Paper    Framed Print
Framed Size:Edition Size Original Issue Price Our Price
33" x 43"   1,500 S/N $625.00 $1,468.00
 Comes in a 1.25" cherry frame with oak brown and hazelnut mats.
 This item also includes a commemorative medallion under glass.
 Please add $29.50 for shipping, handling, and insurance.


Print Description:
This is the first in the dramatic series of Arnold Friberg paintings commissioned in 1969 be General Motors to commemorate 100 years of American intercollegiate football.

For years, some form of football had been played on campuses and elsewhere. It wasn't until 1869 that, for the first time, one college played another in a game. Rutgers challenged Princeton in what was to become the first game in the history of intercollegiate football.

The historic game was played on a clear autumn day in a cow pasture with a round ball. The players had no uniforms, helmets or protective padding. For identification, those on the Rutgers team wore a red sweater or simply wrapped something red around their heads.

The enterprising Rutgers "rushers" (today's linemen) locked arms in a "flying wedge" to protect the man in back who kicked the ball along the ground (hence the name "football"). The Princeton team got even by quickly forming their own copycat flying wedge.

One mercilessly aggressive player, known only as "Big Mike", is recorded to have wreaked havoc among his opponents. He is depicted very boldly in the foreground.

Rutgers being a divinity school, some onlookers objected to such a rough game as unseemly student conduct. One outraged professor, here pictured, shook his umbrella at the team and shouted, "You men will come to no good end!" Yet, a number of that day's players, in time, became eminent clergymen. It was from this primitive, improvised contest that the complex and highly organized game of our time has grown.

To commemorate the centennial in 1969, The First Intercollegiate Game was commissioned by General Motors' Chevrolet Division as a series of four paintings depicting significant moments in the history of college football. Rutgers and Princeton played the first gridiron challenge between two schools on November 6, 1869. Renowned artist, Arnold Friberg has captured the intensity of the players and the overall roughness of the sport.


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The First Intercollegiate Game copyright© by Arnold Friberg.