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Walter Camp and the Creation of American Football - Illinois Scholarship Online
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Walter Camp and the Creation of American Football

Roger R. Tamte


Existing football literature lacks an adequate history of the creation of American football, primarily because it fails to sufficiently examine individual human contributions, especially the circumstances and role of those contributions in achieving the game’s distinctive and appealing features. Walter Camp is the key person in American football’s development, almost a solitary leader in the game’s early years, influential in development of various component features of the game, and inventor of its most important rule, the downs-and-distance rule (today four downs to advance ten yards). Camp ... More

Keywords: American football, Walter Camp, Leader, rule maker, game development, invention, conflict, President Theodore Roosevelt, “four downs to advance ten yards,”, forward pass

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2018 Print ISBN-13: 9780252041617
Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: January 2019 DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252041617.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Roger R. Tamte, author

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Part I The Students’ Game

Part II Getting Noticed

Part III The Game Established

Part IV Whose Game Now?

Part V Bigger and … ?

Part VI The New Game

Part VII Keeping the Nation Fit