Providence College Football, 1921-1941



"At last Providence College is represented on the gridiron. The students, and even the members of the faculty, have long been looking forward to this day when they can claim a team as their own of which they can be justly proud. Through the untiring efforts of Coach Huggins a smoothly running team has been developed. And although handicapped by lack of weight in almost every position, this loss is made good by the presence of a great amount of speed and science.

In the selection of Fred Huggins as coach, our Athletic Director displayed rare judgment. Mr. Huggins is a well known football star himself and, as the saying goes, he knows the game from A to Z, "and then some." When he first took the candidates in hand, they were, with a few exceptions, all inexperienced men. After a great deal of instruction and hard practice, he has brought them up to the college standard, and now almost every man of the squad is entirely dependable."

Providence College Alembic, vol II no 1, October 1921





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Thus began Providence College's football legacy at the collegiate level, which lasted until America's entry into World War II in December of 1941. During those years many great Providence College athletes, such as Hank Soar '37', Mal Brown '33', Dexter Davis '34', and Heck Allen '29' graced not just the academic halls of Providence College, but also the gridiron fields of the college's many rivals.

Schools like Boston College, Holy Cross, St John's, and Rhode Island State, while many times triumphing over Providence through the years, often found themselves on the losing end of the Fighting Friar's indomitable spirit. By the end of the 1930s, however, the Providence College Football Friars were facing tough times as each year bad luck seemed to bring various injuries to key players, or crucial plays on the field were lost through fumbles or intercepted passes.

With the coming of the Second World War the college suspended its football program in favor of devoting the school's energies to the war effort. It wasn't until 1967 that football was seen again on the Providence College campus, only this time as a college club sport.