Thanks to Tom Kacich, I learned that today is the 100th birthday of Memorial Stadium. The first game was played there on November 3rd, 1923.
Happy 100th birthday, University of Illinois Memorial Stadium. The first game to be played at the unfinished stadium was a 7-0 win over the University of Chicago, the lone touchdown by Red Grange. Illinois won the mythical national championship that year. pic.twitter.com/llqUTyVKxa— tom kacich (@tkacich) November 3, 2023
Here’s a good spot to read up on the history of the stadium. Last year, U of I shared some “through the years” photos that show how it’s changed throughout the century. Of course beyond all Illinois football that’s happened there, it was home to the first Farm Aid and hosted the Chicago Bears for a season while Soldier Field was undergoing renovation. I remember there was a huge debate about serving alcohol at those games. Now I’m freely slurping down Watson’s boozy slushes to ease my disappointment about the season.