BC Football and Clemson Begin New Tradition
Oct. 29, 2008
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - When Boston College and Clemson meet on Saturday for the 18th time, one team will walk away with the brand new O'Rourke-McFadden Trophy. A new tradition initiated by the Boston College Gridiron Club, "The Leather Helmet" honors the relationship between the two programs dating back to their first meeting in the 1940 Cotton Bowl.
"In the first four years since we entered the ACC, the relationship with Clemson has been the best we ever experienced in 30 years of college football," said Paul Criscione, President of the Boston College Gridiron Club. "They are friendly, welcoming, kind, and hospitable. The hospitality down there hooked us. The last three games have been outstanding. It is an outgrowth of the friendship, camaraderie, and hospitality that Clemson has brought to us."
In addition to the team trophy, the MVP of the game will be awarded a replica leather helmet that his team donned in the 1940s.
The O'Rourke-McFadden Trophy honors the rich football tradition of both schools as well as the legacy of a great player from both programs that played during the leather helmet era and in the first meeting in 1940. In what was the first bowl game for each squad, "Banks" McFadden led Clemson to a 6-3 victory in the Cotton Bowl. McFadden was an All-America quarterback for the Tigers and their first honoree into the College Football Hall of Fame.
On the BC side of the ball was Chuckin' Charlie O'Rourke was also an All-America quarterback. The loss to Clemson was the last of O'Rourke's career as he led the Eagles to an undefeated season in 1940 that culminated in the national championship.
Like McFadden, O'Rourke was the first BC football player to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
BC is 3-0 against Clemson since joining the ACC in 2005, but those three wins have come by a combined seven points. The teams' first two meetings as conference foes in 2005 and 2006 both went to overtime. Clemson is the only team Boston College has ever faced from the Palmetto State and the Eagles hold a slight 8-7-2 advantage in the all-time series.
The game is slated to begin at 3:30 p.m. at Alumni Stadium and will be televised on ESPNU.