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Clash of Titans
Games featuring a future Hall of Fame coach on each sideline.
November 2, 1907: Michigan @ Vanderbilt
Fielding Yost vs Dan McGugin
Dan McGugin was Fielding Yost's third key recruit at Michigan in 1901 after HB Willie Heston and lineman George Gregory. McGugin had actually graduated from Drake University in Des Moines IA. He was described as "a first-rate block­ing guard with uncommon speed, even if at 180 pounds he was undersized." A Yost teammate from the 1896 Lafayette team was Drake's coach, and he tipped Yost about McGugin's talents.
Michigan athletic director Charles Baird arranged for McGugin to enroll in the Michigan law school. That made McGugin eligible to play for the Wolverines. The problem was that Dan had already played four years at Drake. But he persuaded the Michigan Board of Admissions that he was a preparatory student in the first two of those years. So he still had two years of eligibility.
McGugin started at guard for Michigan's "Point-a-Minute" teams in 1903 and 1904 that outscored their opponents an astounding 1,211 to 12. He then served as Yost's assistant coach in 1903.
After the 1903 season, Vanderbilt was looking for a head coach. So a letter was sent to the most famous coach in the land asking for a recommendation. Yost sug­igested McGugin. Let Dan tell the story from here.
I wrote Vanderbilt, cautiously offering my services but received no re­sponse. One day ... I had a telegram from Western Reserve at Cleveland offering me the job there and asking for an immediate reply. I went to telegram office and wired acceptance, and when I walked back to the Delta Upsilon house, I found a telegram from Vanderbilt definitely offering me that place.
Vanderbilt offered $850 and Western Reserve $1,000, but I wanted to come South and see and know the people. I decided that if I could recall the telegram to Cleveland before its delivery, I would go to Vanderbilt. Other­iwise I would go to Western Reserve. The telegram was recalled before delivery by three minutes.
McGugin wasted no time elevating Vanderbilt football to new heights. He in­istalled the Michigan "hurry up" offense (called the "no huddle" offense today). His 1904 squad went 9-0-0 and remains the only undefeated, untied team in school history. Eight of the games were shutouts with Missouri Mines scoring a four-point field goal. The Commodores led the nation with 452 points.

Dan McGugin watching from the sidelines at Vanderbilt.
Vanderbilt Athletic Communications
Fred Russell, longtime sports editor for the Nashville Banner, wrote a memoir of his career entitled Bury Me in an Old Press Box. He wrote this about McGugin.

A man didn’t have to play football under McGugin to get to know him well, or to comprehend—and admire—his coaching philosophy. To him, teams were men, not machines. He was hearty, convivial, with big, kindly Irish eyes of blue, and an infinite deal of wit. ...
While McGugin had brought new techniques to Southern football, and was a clever strategist, his foremost quality was the ability to inspire men. Not as a staccato fire-eater, like Knute Rockne; Dan spoke softly and slowly. He was a master of psychology, keying a team with an almost-sacred approach, or breaking tension with some hilarious prank or remark.

The brothers-in-law agreed to a 1905 game between their two squads in Ann Arbor. Vanderbilt didn't score a point but managed to hold Michigan to 18, the Wolverines' lowest total in their first five games to that point in the season.
That was the lone defeat in the Commodores' 1905 season. Six of their seven victories were shutouts. They finished atop the loosely organized 14-team Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association football standings.
In 1906, McGugin married Virginia Fite of Nashville with Yost serving as best man. Yost met Virginia's twin sister Eunice and later married her, making the two coaches brothers-in-law. Yost began spending his off-seasons in Nashville, where he was available to help his brother-in-law develop the Vanderbilt program.
The '06 Commodores returned to Ann Arbor and gave the Wolverines a tough­ier game. The 10-4 defeat before 10,000 fans was the only blemish on Vander­ibilt's slate for the second year in a row. The 10 points were the most given up, with Georgia Tech's six points two weeks later being the only other blemish on the defense's record.

1907 Vanderbilt football team (Vanderbilt University Commodore Yearbook Class of 1908)

1907 Michigan football team (University of Michigan Michiganensian Yearbook Class of 1908)
Coach Fielding Yost is ihe middle of the last row.
The stage was set for Michigan's first game below the Mason and Dixon line in 1907. Yost's squad was undefeated in four games while Vanderbilt was 2-0-1, the tie coming against Navy in Annapolis.
A crowd of 8,000–the largest to attend a game in Dixie at that point–packed Dud­ley Field on a beautiful November day that was too warm for Michigan's liking. The game a "a big society event in the South," and the elite of Nashville, Chatta­inooga, and Memphis were in attendance. Students from every college and prep school in Tennessee also attended the game.
Michigan won the toss and elected to defend the North goal to take advantage of a strong wind that would make kicking and receiving punts challenging. Vander­ibilt then chose to kickoff.
The unorthodox move paid off as the Wolverines were unable to mount a drive and punted. But the Commodores soon had to punt back, thanks in large part to a 15y penalty for an incomplete forward pass.
The punt exchanges continued with Michigan gradually gaining more and more ground. Finally, E Harry Hammond booted to Sam Costen on the Vandy 30. He fumbled the ball, and the other Wolverine end, Mason Rumney, fell on it at the 15.
After a running play gained a yard, T Walter "Octy" Graham dropped back and place kicked a field goal. 4-0 Michigan.
Under the rules of the day, Vanderbilt kicked off and actually got their first scoring chance as a result. Michigan ran the ball once, then punted to Vander­ibilt's 45. Bob Blake returned the kick 40y to the 15. After two running plays lost a total of 7y, the Commodores tried a place kick but the ball went wide by a foot.
The kicking duel continued, with each side often punting on first or second down. At one point, there were punts on five consecutive plays. During that sequence, Blake returned 60y to give Vanderbilt great field position only to turn around and kick right back to Michigan.

L-R: Germany Schulz, Bob Blake, William Wasmund
Finally, the Wolverines got a break that led to their second field goal. Costen, who would muff six punts during the game, fumbled, and HB Prentiss Douglas recovered on the five. Two runs and an incomplete pass gained nothing. So Gra­ham kicked another field goal to double Michigan's lead. 8-0 Michigan
If you didn't like punting, the second half was a colossal bore. The Michigan forward wall continue to bottle up the Vanderbilt offense. The Michigan Alumnus singled out C Adolph "Germany" Schulz as "far and away the star of the game. In his usual style, he was in every play, tackling runners for loss, falling on the ball in fumbles, and opening wide holes in the holes in the line for Michigan gains ... He showed conclusively that he has no equal in the keystone position."
The best chance for either team to score came late in the half when Michigan drove deep into Vanderbilt territory aided by a 25y punt return by QB William Wasmund and a 15y holding penalty on the Commodores. The Wolverines reached the 15 before turning the ball over on downs.
When Vanderbilt punted back, Graham tried a field goal that failed.
Final score: Michigan 8 Vanderbilt 0
References: Bury Me in an Old Press Box: Good Times and Life of a Sportswriter, Fred Russell (1957)
Vanderbilt Football: Tales of Commodore Gridiron History (Kindle), Bill Traughber (2011)
Stagg vs Yost: The Birth of Cutthroat Football, John Kryk (2015)