College Football’s Highest Scoring Teams, 2014

As College football enters into the month of October, this means cooler temps; but hotter races for the race for the conference championships and advancement into the post-season play.

Entering this weekend’s games a total of 25 games have seen the two teams combine for over 100 points. Twenty-two teams make-up schools reaching the plateau; as California (BSD), Eastern Washington (CSD) and Reinhardt (NAIA)  have two such games.

Worth Noting: Teams are listed–by points–of the winners as a few teams have both won and lost games when both schools combined for triple digets.

Despite many teams putting lots of points on their respective scoreboards in 2014; there is slim chance to see the number of games reach or even surpass the total for all of 2013 of 74 games.

Teams in this week’s high scoring index have combined to score between the bare minimumn  of 100 all the way up to the record-tying offensive explossion of 142 point put-up in the Rose-Hulman and Illinois College; tying a NCAA III single game mark.

The range of points scored by the winner range between 52 markers (Ohio Northern, Eastern Washington and Reinhardt ) to Texas A&M-Commerce’s 98 point out burst earlier this season.

The High Scoring Index…

Winner Scored Points 2014 High Scoring Index Division
74 142 Rose Hulman 74, Illinois College 68 NCAA III
52 121 Heidelberg 69, Ohio Northern 52 NCAA III
60 119 California 60, Washington State 59 BSD
98 118 Texas A&M-Commerce 98, East Texas Baptist 20 NCAA II
59 115 California 59, Colorado 56 BSD
59 115 Montana St. 59, Sacramento St. 56 CSD
70 111 East Carolina 70, North Carolina 41 BSD
59 111 Washington 59, Eastern Washington 52 BSD
68 110 Waldorf 68, Trinity Bible 42 NAIA
56 109 Eastern Washington 56, Idaho State 53 CSD
77 107 Winston-Salem 77, Chowan 30 NCAA II
63 107 Greenville 63, MacMurray 44 NCAA III
55 107 Faulkner 55, Reihhardt 52 NAIA
62 106 South Dakota Mines 62, William Jewell 44 NCAA II
59 106 Ottawa 59, Benedictine KS 47 NAIA
59 105 Hastings 59, Briar Cliff 46 NAIA
65 103 St. Xavier 65, Marian (Ind) 38 NAIA
52 103 Eastern Washington 52, Montana State 51 CSD
83 102 Morningside 83, Nebraska Wesleyan 19 NAIA
Pikeville 62, Bluefield 40 NAIA
61 102 Reinhardt 61, Union 41 NAIA
102 Dayton 54, Davidson 48 CSD
59 100 Delaware Valley 59, Lebanon Valley 41 NCAA III
55 100 Augsburg 55, Concordia WI 45 NCAA III
52 100 Reinhardt 52, Lindsay Wilson 48 NAIA

Since the of this decade, 29 games have been played where the teams combine to score at least 120 points.

A top 10 shows because of ties, there will be more than 1o teams…

184 Faulkner 95, Union (Ky.) 89 2011 NAIA
147 West Texas A & M 90, McMurry 57 2013 NCAA II
142 Rose Hulman 74, Illinois College 68 2014 NCAA III*
139 Union (Ky.) 84, Bethel (Tenn.) 55 2010 NAIA
135 Sul Ross State 70, Texas Lutheran 65 2012 NCAA III
133 West Virginia 70, Baylor 63 2012 BSD
132 Lewis & Clark 68, Puget Sound 64 2010 NCAA III
132 Michigan 67, Illinois 65 2010 BSD
131 Murray State 72, Missouri State 59 2010 CSD
131 Methodist 69, North Carolina Wesleyan 62 2013 NCAA III
131 Iowa Wesleyan 66, Waldorf 65 2012 NAIA


72 142 2007 Hartwick 72, Utica 70 NCAA III

College Football History made–98 years ago

FYI: This is a special edition of Lighting-up the Scoreboard. The regular post will be online later this week.

In a span of four days, American College Football history was made. It was the first time that a team had scored 100 more points in a game since Walter Camp introduced the scoring vales in 1883.

There was no wide-spread media coverage to cover this game, much less transmitting it along the electronic air waves.

The first, as with so many of college football’s initial events, would involve Yale. On Oct. 25 1884, the team traveled Dartmouth; returning back to its campus with a 113-0 winner. Not to be out, rival Princeton would surpass the mark in its defeat of Lafayette, 140-0 four days later.

It was also the initial contest between the two schools.

In the season finale, between the two high scoring teams, defense prevailed…final score 0-0.

An interesting note: this is the only game when Dartmouth has ever been involved in a game where both teams combined for 100 or more points.

According to Richard Topp, an expert at score research, there has been 982 games where the winner has tallied at least 100; as verified by his work within his database, The American College Football Scorebook

As most college football fans know, the east coast was the haven of college football during its formative falls.

Princeton’s mark would only last until the 1886 season, when Harvard tallied 158 points when it shutout Phillips-Exeter Academy.

Returning to the field…After Harvard canceled the 1885 season; the school came back a year later revived and ready to play. Aided by the 158 point total, Harvard would finish the season with 765 points—a record for all of college football until the 2004 season. That season Pittsburg State (Kansas) must have burned scoreboard lights all across its 14-game schedule—scoring 837 points.

Between the 1884-99 seasons, 29 games were played with the winner tallying 100 or more markers.

College Football’s Big Three: Harvard, Princeton and Yale led the way; as each school was involved with four games, scoring over 100 points each time.

The early powerhouses scored 1421 points between them; while not so much as allowing a goal-from-the field–an early name for field goals–by their opponents.

Seven of the games that were dominated by the pre-Ivy schools were Wesleyan and Johns Hopkins, as they lost by a combined 793-0.

A closer look at the scores show the dominance.

Combined Points: 581
Yale 136, Wesleyan 0
    1891 Harvard 124, Wesleyan 0
    1887 Harvard 110, Wesleyan 0
Yale 106, Wesleyan 0
  1888 Yale 105, Wesleyan 0
Combined Points: 212 1885 Princeton 108, Johns Hopkins 0
Princeton 104, Johns Hopkins 0


The only other time when two teams met and one totally dominated the other on the scoreboard was during the Oklahoma-Kingfisher games; played during the decade of the teens. (Really the Sooners had a total dominance over this school; but just time three times saw its team register 100 or more points.)

The first such game coincided with the Sooners’ first century output. In 1911, OU scored 104 and the onslaught was on. (This was the sixth of 13 games that the victor tallied this amount.)

Twice later the high-scoring Sooners would combine to defeat this opponent by a 336-0 count; for a three-game tally of 440-0.

History was about to be made…twice in a 24-hour period

While Oklahoma consistently found the end zone against Kingfisher; another school from the Sooner State, Central State Normal, would set and hold the single-game mark for the most points scored in a game—in less than 24 hours.

Richard Topp sent this:



Edmond, Okla. Oct. 7. – Football authorities of Oklahoma Central Normal here believe the score rolled up against Oklahoma Methodist university (sic) here yesterday 183 to 0 is the largest on record. During the game twenty-seven touchdowns were made by Central Normal.

By the end of the games played on the date shown above; the record for most point scored in a college football game had been eclipsed by Georgia Tech in its high-scoring contest; as it defeated Cumberland, Tenn., 222-0.

Georgia Tech scored 29 total touchdowns; while Oklahoma Central Normal had 27. *[Stars of an Earlier Autumn second edition]

Worth Noting: Games before and after for Cumberland and Georgia Tech

Cumberland opened its three-game season with a loss to Sewanee 107 Cumberland 0.

Georgia Tech, ‘tuned-up for the high-scoring affair’ by defeating Mercer, 61-0.


Middle Tennessee ended Cumberland’s with the former scoring a 49-0 victory.

Georgia Tech must have been exhausted after the previous week’s game; as they would only register a 9-0 triumph over Davidson.


A review of the teams recording 100 or more points in a season show that for the 1916 season 17 teams reached the century mark—up 7 from the previous season.

The single-season high was 20 (1912—the first year that current scoring values of 6 points for a TD was first used). Taking advantage of the higher TD value was a couple of small college from Kansas, as each tallied 151 points. Southwestern and Kansas State Manuel shutout their opponents: Friends and Springfield Normal (Missouri), respectively.

A total of 138 games, played from 1884-1916, saw a victorious eleven would put their mark of 100-plus points on the scoreboard.

To put the 222 points in perspective, here’s a progression of teams that would hold the single-season mark; including Georgia Tech’s scoreboard busting offensive explosion.

140 1884 Princeton 140, Lafayette 0
158 1886 Harvard 158, Phillips-Exeter Academy 0
159 1913 Newberry 159, Bailey Military Institute 0
165 1915 Christian Brothers 165, Marvin College 0
222 1916 Georgia Tech 222, Cumberland 0



After the 1916 season (1917-36), 116 times a college football team would hit the century mark; as King (Tenn.) became the third team to score 200 points in a game.

The school’s most lopsided “W” came when it defeated Lenior (now, Lenior-Rhyne NC), 205-0.

A Baker’s Dozen…

Official college football statistics began with the 1937 season. Since that time only 13 games have been played where the winner topped the century point total.

111 1937 Arkansas A & M 111, Northeast Center-LSU 0
104 1941 Morehead Teachers 104, Rio Grande 0
105 1946 Wiley 105, Philander Smith 0
101 1947 Wilberforce State 101, Wright-Patterson Field 0
125 1949 Connecticut 125, Newport Navy 0
107 1949 High Point 107, Pope Field 0
103 1949 Wyoming 103, Colorado State College 0
103 1949 San Jose State 103, University of Mexico 0
111 1951 Paul Quinn 111, Mary Allen JC 0
103 1967 Alcorn A & M 103, Paul Quinn 0
106 1968 Houston 100, Tulsa 6
101 1989 Central State (Ohio) 101, Lane 0
105 2003 Rockford 105, Trinity Bible 0


[Courtesy of Richard Topp’s American Football Scorebook; used by permission.]


Early in the 2014 season, Texas A&M-Commerce just missed, by two points, from joining the 13 teams above.

Since 2010, six teams were within 10 points of 100.

98 118 Texas A&M-Commerce 98, East Texas Baptist 20 2014 NCAA II
95 184 Faulkner 95, Union (Ky.) 89 2011 NAIA
91 119 West Alabama 91, Central State (Ohio) 28 2013 NCAA II
90 147 West Texas A & M 90, McMurry 57 2013 NCAA II
90 118 Pittsburg State 90, Southwest Minnesota State 28 2013 NCAA II
90 109 Lindenwood 90, Culver-Stockton 19 2010 NAIA

 Will college football every see another game with the winner Lighting-up the Scoreboard with three spots on the scoreboard? I think so…I hope so…do you?

Scoring and receiving the ball back

Throughout the years, college football has made numerous changes in scoring values and also ways of awarding teams.

Case-in-point as an email from fellow college football researcher, Paul Land, presented this question:

I have a question regarding game rules that could have been in place for pre-1900 contests. While researching the 1897 Oregon season, I ran across this game story in the local newspaper. Note that the play by play description appears to imply that Portland kicked off after every Oregon score, which no doubt helped lead to the 95-0 final score.

Was this a regional rule? A game-agreed rule? Or something that was on the books at the time?

A very interesting question. I have only seen one other time that the team that allowed the score give the ball back to the one that the opposing team–only to see it tally more points.  This was in the 1916 Georgia Tech Cumberland  game (222-0).

So without much information on such a play, I sent-out emails to other researchers for assistance and feedback.

Two replied; with different views on “rules of the day.”

Vic Winnek, NCAA Football Official, Instructor of Football Officials was the first to reply:


Great to receive your e-mail about the 1897 Kick-off Rule (the play by play description appears to imply that Portland kicked off after every Oregon score,).  This was a rule on the books until the mid 2000s.

I believe the Football rule at play is Rule VII, Section 1(c.) After Scoring:

The teams shall not change goals after a try-at-goal following a touchdown, nor after a goal from the field, but the side just scored upon shall have the option of kicking or having their opponents kick off.

Thus Oregon scored and elected to have Portland kick-off to Oregon.   This was a national rule not a regional rule.  

In the modern NCAA Football Rulebook this is rectified and addressed in Rule 8 section 3 Article 6  which provides after a touchdown the ball shall next be put into play by a kickoff or at the succeeding spot in extra periods. “The field captain of the team against which the six point touchdown was scored shall designate which team shall kickoff.”  Rule 8-4-2-a provides that The field captain of the team against which the 3 point field goal was scored shall designate which team shall kickoff.”

This rule was changed some time between 2003-2007 to take away the option and to mandate the team that had just been scored upon shall receive the kick-off and the scoring team still kick off.

Then, a few days later, another fellow researcher and author, James Herget sent this response.

I don’t know how the 95-0 score was rolled up, but it was probably not due to the kick off rule.  By 1880, when the game was still primarily Rugby, a practice had developed called inch kicking.  Although the rules said that team A had to kick off when team B scored, the practice of inch kicking nullified the rule.  The rule did not say that the kick had to go 10 yards or any particular distance.  Therefore, the kicker could tap the ball with his foot and then pick it up and run with it.  Officials did not object to this practice.  See my book “American Football: How the Game Evolved” at page 39.

Editor’s Note: If you’re interested in learn how the game has progressed from the beginning down through years—without highlighting a respective season, team or player; just how the game has developed, the American Football: How the Game Evolved is a book that would aid in your in journey.

Future postings, after some research, will include the rules of the day–from the 1914 season–along with the scoring accomplishments.

After the fourth weekend of the 2014 college football season, teams are putting-up a high scores, both sides of the scoreboard…just falling short in reaching the combined century mark.

* * *

A Baker’s Dozen

Heading into this weekend’s action, just 14 games have seen teams Light-up the Scoreboard by combing for 100 or more points.

Pouring through the respective division’s composite stats, in this case, scoring; shows the teams that scored the most points in the games listed within this blog, just 4 on within the leaders in Offensive Scoring Averages–with 9  in the Top 25.  Augsburg has registered the lowest ranking–59th–in NCAA III of teams with a game of 100 combined points.

  • For the first time this season, all 5 divisions have at least one game listed with the other high-scoring games.

Current Highest Combined Points Scored (through Sept. 20)

Points 2014  Teams and Scores Division Current RK Total Pts OSA
118 Texas A&M-Commerce 98, East Texas Baptist 20 NCAA II 2 170 56.7
111 East Carolina 70, North Carolina 41 BSD 18 173 43.3
111 Washington 59, Eastern Washington 52 BSD 25* (tied Ole Miss) 165 41.3
110 Waldorf 68, Trinity Bible 42 NAIA 24 166 33.2
107 Faulkner 55, Reihhardt 52 NAIA 5 195 48.8
106 Ottawa 59, Benedictine KS 47 NAIA 29 95 31.7
103 St. Xavier 65, Marian (Ind) 38 NAIA 19 108 36
103 Eastern Washington 52, Montana State 51 CSD 2 201 50.3
102 Morningside 83, Nebraska Wesleyan 19 NAIA 1 211 70.3
102 Pikeville 62, Bluefield 40 NAIA 13 160 40
101 Southeastern Oklahoma State 52, Arkansas-Monticello 49 NCAA II 54* (tied with Kutztown, Walsh, Emporia St.) 98 32.7
100 Augsburg 55, Concordia WI 45 NCAA III 59 100 33.3
100 Reinhardt 52, Lindsay Wilson 48 NAIA 11 167 41.8

 As you read, each division is represented; all but the NAIA have a long way of reaching or surpassing their single-season mark. The NAIA needs 4 such games to tie its 2010 mark of 10.

Listed by most games, here are each division’s highest scoring season of Lighting-up the Scoreboard.

*NCAA III, 29, 2010

* Stars-Era (1900-1936), 22, 1920

*NCAA 1-A/BSD, 20, 2012

*NCAA II, 2007 & 2012

*NCAA 1AA/CSD, 10, 1999

*NAIA, 10, 2010

*Stars-Era (1884-1899), 4, 1890 & 91

There is an excellent chance that at least one more game could be added to the NAIA’s 2014 season.

Alan Grosbach, NAIA Manager of Communications and Sports Information writes in 

NAIA Football Weekly Update

• No. 4 Faulkner (Ala.) looks to continue its best start in program history when the Eagles host No. 17 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) Saturday afternoon in the NAIA Football Game of the Week.
Saturday marks the third all-time meeting between the two programs. The all-time series is knotted at 1-1, as each team owns a home victory.
• Dominant offense has been the standard when Faulkner and Lindsey Wilson meet, as the two squads have combined for 1,943 yards and 151 points in their two prior meetings.

* * *

NAIA  Schools Trade Scores; establish standards

In 2011, Faulkner (AL) and Union (KY) combined for 184 points; in the process  made Scoring StatHistory.

Faulkner held on for the shootout triumph, 95-89. In the process became the fifth highest combined points since scoring values were introduced in 1883-as well, the winners are the only team on the highest combined point list that failed to reach the century mark and not register a shutout.

Top 10 Highest Scoring Games, 1883-2013

222 1916 Georgia Tech 222, Cumberland 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
206 1922 King 206, Lenoir 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
205 1916 St. Viator 205, Lane Tech HS 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
187 1922 Roanoke 187, Randolph-Macon Academy 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
184 2011 Faulkner 95, Union (Ky.) 89 NAIA
183 1916 Central State Normal 183, Methodist Univ. 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
179 1917 Oklahoma 179, Kingfisher 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
178 1919 Albion 178, River Rouge Navy 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
171 1920 North Georgia Agricultural 171, Lanier 0 Stars-era, 1900-36
167 1920 Arizona 167, Camp Jones 0 Stars-era, 1900-36