Shreveport’s Centenary Was Once a College Football Power [VIDEO]
Shreveport historian Ernie Roberson talks with 101.7 / 710 KEEL's Robert J Wright about the glory days of Centenary football and the Gents stadium which once stood where the college's baseball field is today.
Not many locals know that the little Kings Highway school was once - admittedly, so time ago - a nationally ranked, college football powerhouse! From Bentley Sloane's "The Glory Years of Football, Centenary College, 1922 - 1942:
"The story of football at Centenary College of Louisiana in the 1920s is so dramatic and unique that it deserves special treatment all of its own. A small, obscure liberal arts college with a student body of less than 300 suddenly fields a powerful football team in 1922, and for the next 20 years plays and defeats teams in the Southwest Conference (Texas) and some of the nation's best in other athletic conferences, including Boston
College, the University of Iowa, the University of Mississippi, Oklahoma A & M, and Louisiana State University."
And perhaps the school's pigskin high point? That would be the Gents 6-0 win over LSU in 1932. From 247sports.com.
"On Nov. 12, 1932, then Sen. Huey Long led his Fighting Tigers to Shreveport to take on Centenary. At the time, the Gents were among the top programs in the nation. Centenary owned wins over Texas and Notre Dame in the early portion of the 20th century, but Sen. Long guaranteed a victory traveling to Shreveport to see the Gents undefeated season come to an end.
When the dust settled, Centenary earned a 6-0 victory. The following season, the Gents played LSU to a 0-0 tie in Tiger Stadium, the final meeting between the two schools.
Over a decade later, the Centenary football program was dissolved as the board of directors felt "football was cutting into the college's" academic budget."