An excerpt from Chance for Glory, about the 1915 Washington State College football team, Coach William “Lone Star” Dietz, and their improbable run to the 1916 Rose Bowl.
A century later, this 2015 book by Darin Watkins ’84 puts the team and WSC sports into the context of the period, when the college was striving to expand.
The Oregon football team had a number of good reasons to be confident. On paper, the game would be lopsided. All of the Oregon linemen weighed in over 190 pounds. Even moving the fullback Carl Dietz to the line would give State, at best, an average of 175 pounds. Oregon had sent a scout to the Washington State alumni game, and he returned to tell Coach Bezdek, “Washington State will not be a factor.” In truth, the scout only watched a few early plays and then disappeared to a local restaurant to get out of the weather. But add in such factors as a new Washington State coach with an entirely new system and Oregon had plenty of reasons to be dismissive. … Read on