Timeline of football at Fenway Park
Here’s a short look at the long history of football being played at Fenway Park.
Nov. 30, 1912 – Shortly after the Red Sox season was over, Fenway Park was the site of the national high school championship, where Oak Park High School of Illinois defeated Everett, 32-12. Boston Latin also played Boston English that same year.
Oct. 31 1914 – Boston College played its first game at Fenway, a 28-6 win over Norwich. From 1914 to 1956, BC played 75 times at Fenway, going 54-16-5.
Nov. 6, 1915 – Dartmouth 7, Penn 3. Penn quarterback Bert Bell went on to become commissioner of the NFL.
Nov. 1927 – Pere Marquette, a football team from South Boston, played the New York Giants, who were the NFL champions in 1926. There were 15 games at Fenway in 1927.
1933 – The Boston Redskins of the NFL played their first game at Fenway Park. They were the first of five pro teams to use Fenway Park as their home field, which they did through the 1936 season before moving to Washington D.C. for the 1937 season.
1935 – The last time high school football was played at Fenway was 1935, when several high schools in the Boston area had the opportunity to play in the shadow of the Green Monster.
1936 – The Boston Shamrocks, who were members of the second American Football League, split home games between Braves Field and Fenway for two seasons.
Nov. 16 1940 – Boston College stops Georgetown’s three-year unbeaten streak with a 19-18 win. Legendary sports writer Grantland Rice wrote: “In many ways it was probably the greatest football game ever played by colleges or by pros.” With the Eagles clinging to a 19-16 lead and the ball on their own 8-yard line, BC quarterback Charlie O’Rourke dropped back and ran around in the end zone to take time off the clock and take a safety. BC held on for the win.
1940 – The Boston Bears participated in the third incarnation of the American Football League. Attendance was sparse, and the team was dissolved. The league itself suspended operations after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.
Nov. 28, 1942 – This day is remembered as the night of the tragic Cocoanut Grove fire, when 492 patrons perished when the Cocoanut Grove nightclub caught on fire. With just one public exit, many died from smoke inhalation.
The Boston College football team was scheduled to go to the Cocoanut Grove. The Eagles were 8-0 and three touchdown favorites for the season finale that afternoon against Holy Cross.
Representatives from the Sugar Bowl were at Fenway Park to extend an invitation for BC after the game to play in New Orleans. The invitation never came though, as Holy Cross rolled to a 55-12 upset.
BC then cancelled its planned after-party at Cocoanut Grove, and the team was nowhere near the horrific fire later that night.
Oct. 14, 1944 – Notre Dame’s last appearance at Fenway. Notre Dame defeated Dartmouth, 64-0.
1944-1948 – The Boston Yanks played as part of the NFL
Nov. 12, 1949 – Maryland defeats Boston University, 14-13. The play-by play announcer for the game is Vin Scully, working his first broadcast ever.
1952 – Boston University played its final game at Fenway. Harry Agganis starred for the Terriers. He played in 1948 and 1949, left to join the Marines, and came back to play in 1951 and 1952. Agganis was a two-sport star for the Terriers, who also played baseball. He graduated in 1953 and went on to play for the Red Sox. In 1955, he contracted pneumonia and died from a pulmonary embolism on June 29.
Dec. 1, 1956 – Last college game played at Fenway. Holy Cross defeated Boston College, 7-0.
Oct. 11, 1963 – The Patriots play their first game at Fenway Park, a 20-14 win over the Oakland Raiders.
Nov. 23, 1963 – This was the last time a college game was scheduled at Fenway. However, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated on Friday, Nov. 22, and the matchup between Boston College and Boston University – who were supposed to play for first time since 1956 – was canceled, and those two teams never played each other again.
Dec. 1, 1968 – The Patriots defeated the Bengals, 33-14 in the last game played at Fenway.
Nov. 21, 2015 – Boston College is scheduled to face Notre Dame. Four high school games will be also be played at Fenway on Nov. 25-26.