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"Local football fandom has been wandering through a maze of speculation covering the identity of the Grand football players who put over the victory on the AAC. It was no ordinary bunch of gridiron talent that had been imported for the fray. That much was evident after the smooth-working backfield had been in operation for two plays. The backs played too well together not to have been in operation all season, and they maintained this pace through all four quarters, showing some of the niftiest football that has been seen on the local field in many a day.
"Claims are made by the AAC camp that the Grands for the greatest part were made up of university regulars who are disputing the championship of the Middle West with Illinois. The only wonder is that the score against the AAC was not of greater proportions. As far as settling city honors the scrap certainly did nothing of the kind...for not over 50 percent of the talent engaged were Rockford products."
The east-side Swedes, who lost more than money on the contest, understandably felt they had been bilked. "This was just a gambling proposition," recalls J. A. Lengquist, who played with the AAC. "It hurt us to lose. There was a lot of bad feeling after that. You'd think, though, that the great Notre Dame team could have beaten us worse than 17-9."
Coach Haines agrees: "Actually, if one of our ends hadn't missed a signal on a pass play, we could have beaten them. It was a helluva game."
Apparently, the Notre Dame players were hampered by some questionable officiating. They were penalized 110 yards, and The Rockford Morning Star game story commented:
"To the credit of the Grands it must be said they did not deserve the penalties inflicted upon them, most of them being called by Referee Osborne, whose work in the second game was even poorer than the first."
Winning Coach Kitteringham's postgame comment:
"There was no understanding or agreement that I was to use one Rockford player or 11 Rockford players. Football is football, and I know the fans wanted to see good football. When the report got out that the AAC was loading up, we turned to our reinforcements."
The "reinforcement" players climaxed their unbeaten, untied season (9-0-0) after leaving Rockford by beating Morningside College in Iowa 14-6 with two feet of snow on the field on Thanksgiving morning.
Bergman, with a broken leg, missed the final game. For Gipp, Madigan, Slackford, Brandy, Hayes, Malone and Fitzpatrick, it was the third game within six days.