Friday, October 10, 2014

Dartmouth Big Green (1951?-54)

As noted in an earlier post, Dartmouth debuted alternate uniforms with silver/gray helmets and gray pants last weekend, reviving a color last used in 1954. Here’s a look at the last time Dartmouth wore a touch of gray as the “leatherhead” template makes its Gridiron Garb debut. This design was first used in the early 1940s, and the number fonts were in place by 1951.

Here are some pictures of the Big Green (who still used the “Indians” moniker in addition to “Big Green”) in action, from my copy of the 1955 Aegis yearbook. It’s really neat to see something other than the same old pictures you see in books and media guides:

Note how the "ears" of the helmet were attached separately and are painted/dyed green, while the "crown" is given a silver look. Also note that the opposing team in photo No. 3 (not sure who it is, but I'd guess Navy or Holy Cross, who both made appearances at Memorial Field in 1954) are wearing plastic shells. 

Dartmouth won only 11 games between 1951-54, and coach DeOrmond “Tuss” McLaughry (he's the one wearing the hat in the above photos) was replaced by Bob Blackman, who overhauled the uniforms with white plastic shells, white pants and horizontal shoulder stripes. (The iconic "D" helmet, however, had to wait another decade.)

Next week: A couple of one-year wonders from the UConn Huskies.

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