(Goldin Auctions)

On November 2, 1935 two tradition rich and undefeated football teams met. Notre Dame traveled 252 miles that day to play their next state over neighbor, number 1 ranked and favored Ohio State in front of 81,000 fans.

It was the middle of the great depression, but tickets that day were going for huge sums of scarce money.

The game caught the national imagination and long before around the clock TV sports, radio networks CBS, NBC and Mutual and Chicago powerhouse WGN radio and sportswriters from across the country where on hand to give the match up a national footprint.  

The Buckeyes took a 13-0 halftime lead on the strength of a razzle dazzle lateral filled running game.  But Notre Dame Head coach Elmer Layden also known for being one of the famed Four Horseman, made halftime adjustments that bottled up the Buckeyes the rest of the game.

And on offense, the Irish finally got on track in the fourth quarter when Halfback Andy Pilney led an Irish charge back with his running and passing and the Irish, who couldn’t make an extra point that day, were within 1 point as time ticked down.

After a failed onside kick attempt, the Irish recovered a fumble forced by Pilney who also played safety on defense.  The Irish took over in their own territory and Andy Pilney, having the game of his life,  came through again, this time with a 30 yard scramble to the Ohio State 19. 

That was the last down of football Pilney would ever play however as he suffered a devastating knee injury. But there were still :32 seconds on the clock and as Pilney watched from a stretcher, two all-Americans hooked up when Bill Shakespeare hit Wayne Millner from 19 yards out and an exciting 18-13 comeback victory, was complete.

Many in the press and on the radio reported it as the greatest game they had ever seen, and the capacity crowd of Buckeye fans left their stadium, in a daze.

Years later football writers would vote Notre Dame-Ohio State 1935: “The Game of the Century”.

ByPhil Houk

For over 25 years, bringing you the glory of Notre Dame football.

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