|The first Homecoming game, Missouri vs. Kansas, November 25, 1911|
photo courtesy of the University of Missouri
What a grand tradition in high school and college football! Once October hits, campuses all over the country are celebrating the uniquely American celebration of Homecoming. College football is filled with much pageantry in its traditions. Many of these traditions occurred in such a graceful and gradual way that the roots and histories can't be documented accurately.
The tradition of Homecoming, though, definitely began at the University of Missouri. This is fact because Jeopardy! and Trivial Pursuit and the NCAA say so. Baylor, Illinois and the Harvard-Yale rivalry also stake claim to the tradition, but you can't argue with Alex Trebek.
Over at Mizzou magazine, www.mizzoumag.missouri.edu, Stephanie Detillier explains Mizzou's claim that it was the first school to not only encourage alumni to "come home" for their rivalry game against the Kansas Jayhawks on November 25, 1911, but they made it into the full-fledged celebration that college football fans know and love today. On October 15, 2011, the University of Missouri, who holds one of the largest Homecoming celebrations in the nation, will be celebrating their 100th Homecoming. For an entire century, our country has been celebrating football Homecomings.
Happy Homecoming to you and Happy 100th Homecoming, Mizzou!