On November 6, 1869, Rutgers University faced off against the College of New Jersey, now Princeton University, in the very first college football game in the history of the sport. Last Friday, the historic game came to life once more.
Ahead of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights’ season opener, theater students and alumni at the college suited up and threw it back to the 1800s, reenacting the sporting event in honor of its 150th anniversary.
Actors drew from past articles and newspaper clippings to embody the individuals they were tasked with portraying, even wearing era-appropriate clothing to further step into the roles.
“Our goal is not to necessarily get the authenticity of the game 150 years ago, but just to kind of capture the spirit,” said theater professor Marshall Jones.
Rutgers won that very first game — and the current Scarlet Knights squad followed suit, kicking off its season on the right foot by defeating UMass Amherst 48 to 21.