Major League Football Schedules and Match Reports 1920


American Professional Football Association Standings 1920

PosTeamWLTPctPFPANet PtsStreak
1Canton Bulldogs2001.00090090W2
2Buffalo All-Americans2001.00083677W2
3Akron Pros2001.00071071W2
3Rock Island Independents2001.00071071W2
5Decatur Staleys2001.00047740W2
6Dayton Triangles1010.50014014T1
7Detroit Heralds1001.000401426W1
8Rochester Jeffersons1001.00010010W1
9Cincinnati Celts1001.000606W1
10Chicago Cardinals0010.000000T1
10Chicago Tigers0010.000000T1
10Cleveland Tigers0010.000000T1
13Minneapolis Marines0000.0000000
14Hammond Pros0100.000026-26L1
15Toledo Maroons0100.000042-42L1
16Muncie Flyers0100.000045-45L1
17Columbus Panhandles0200.000051-51L2

Major Independent Football Schedule Standings 1920

PosTeamWLTPctPFPANet PtsStreak
1All-Tonawanda Lumberjacks2001.0001030103W2
2Youngstown Patricians2001.000361422W2
3Chicago Pullman Thorns0000.0000000
3Lansing Oldsmobiles0000.0000000
3McKeesport Olympics0000.0000000
3Rochester Scalpers0000.0000000
3Rockford AC0000.0000000
3Syracuse Stars0000.0000000
9Akron Independents0100.0001415-1L1
10Fort Wayne Friars0100.00006-6L1
11Utica Knights of Columbus0100.00007-7L1
12Kewanee Walworths0100.000727-20L1
13Moline Athletics / Tractors0100.000020-20L1
14West Buffalo0100.000632-26L1
15Wheeling Stogies0100.000034-34L1
16Pitcairn Quakers0100.000048-48L1
18Cleveland Panthers0200.0001478-64L2


Note: To View Match Reports and scorers for Individual Games please click on the game you wish to read about in the Schedule below to be brought to that games event page.

Major League Football 1920

Match Day Week 1
(Week 1)
34 - 0

Akron Pros vs Wheeling Stogies

(Week 1)
14 - 0

Dayton Triangles vs Columbus Panhandles

(Week 1)
45 - 0

Rock Island Independents vs Muncie Flyers

(Week 1)
48 - 0

Canton Bulldogs vs Pitcairn Quakers

(Week 1)
38 - 0

All-Tonawanda Lumberjacks vs Cleveland Panthers

(Week 1)
32 - 6

Buffalo All-Americans vs West Buffalo

(Week 1)
10 - 0

Rochester Jeffersons vs All-Buffalo

(Week 1)
20 - 0

Decatur Staleys vs Moline Athletics / Tractors

(Week 1)
21 - 0

Youngstown Patricians vs Sharon

(Week 1)
6 - 0

Cincinnati Celts vs Fort Wayne Friars

(Week 1)
7 - 0

All-Syracuse vs Utica Knights of Columbus

Match Day Week 2
(Week 2)
0 - 0

Chicago Tigers vs Chicago Cardinals

(Week 2)
26 - 0

Rock Island Independents vs Hammond Pros

(Week 2)
37 - 0

Akron Pros vs Columbus Panhandles

(Week 2)
0 - 0

Dayton Triangles vs Cleveland Tigers

(Week 2)
40 - 14

Detroit Heralds vs Cleveland Panthers

(Week 2)
42 - 0

Canton Bulldogs vs Toledo Maroons

(Week 2)
27 - 7

Decatur Staleys vs Kewanee Walworths

(Week 2)
51 - 0

Buffalo All-Americans vs All-Buffalo

(Week 2)
65 - 0

All-Tonawanda Lumberjacks vs All-Syracuse

(Week 2)
15 - 14

Youngstown Patricians vs Akron Independents


Note: R = Cancelled due to Rain. # Cancelled by the team with the (#) after its score. Considered a forfeit win for the other team by Eirball – Awarded 1-0 (#) CT = Cancelled due to train crash involving visiting Pitcairn team on way to match, no Pitcairn player was hurt. ^ Minor league Opposition thus not counted towards NFL Standings by Eirball.

Note 2: Cincinnati Celts and Minneapolis Marines joined the APFA in 1921 and the Toledo Maroons joined the NFL in 1922.

Note 3: Teams labelled Independent played matches against Official APFA teams. Teams labelled Minor League played matches against “Independents”.

Note 4: While an Official member of the APFA, Muncie Flyers failed the schedule another game after losing heavily to Rock Island Independents on the opening day of the season. Players signed on with other Indiana teams (in particular Muncie Tigers and Wabash AA) as well as APFA team Dayton Triangles. At the end of the season they scheduled three games against Gas City Tigers and Muncie Tigers who both finished the Indiana State Football season with 9-0 records, and the Flyers won all three matches claiming the Indiana State Football Championship in the process. whether their record is to be considered a 3-1 APFA half-season, or an Indiana State Championship season is open to debate. Other APFA teams (Rochester Jeffersons, Hammond Pros, Decatur Staleys, Buffalo All-Americans, Columbus Panhandles, Detroit Heralds and Chicago Cardinals) all also played more non-APFA teams than APFA teams, and other teams in the two seasons the NFL was known as the APFA played a half-schedule: Cincinnati Celts (1-3 in 1920 and 0-4 in 1921), Toledo Maroons (1-3 in 1920) and Tonawanda Kardex (0-2-1 in 1921 with one game cancelled).


Bertie Maher, DE, who was born in Co. Mayo, played Defensive End for the Detroit Heralds in 1920. [2][3]

Bob Nash, DE/OT, who was born in Collinstown, Ireland, Played Defensive End & Offensive Tackle for the Akron Pros in 1920 [2][7]

Allen “Pat” McGinnis, who has an Irish name, was player-manager for the Evansville Ex-Collegians in 1920

Youngstown Patricians appear to be named after St. Patrick. On the 22 November 1920, the day the Patricians defeated St. Edwards Saints for the City Championship, the Youngstown Daily Vindicator’s Front Page Headline was ” Battles in Ireland Follow Bloody Day” (Monday, November 22, 1920)They started off as the Church team in St. Patrick’s Parish, before becoming the city’s team. The team was made up of Irish, Poles and Italians, tough men who worked in the steel mills. [Reference: 45]

Cincinnati Celts are another team with an Irish name,albeit one referencing all Celts. George Roudebush was Quarterback for the Cincinnati Celts and his revolutionary use of the foward pass changed football. He remembered the Celts as a team run “by a bunch of wild Irishmen” and was 93 years old in 1988 when interviewed, with his wits still sharp, remembering dates, names nicknames, figures, events and conversations from the era, making him the oldest living NFL player at the time. [Reference: 42]

Bert Maher, born in Co. Mayo, played in the first season for the Detroit Heralds. Bob Nash, played six seasons (1920-1925) for the Akron Pros, Buffalo All-Americans, Rochester J effersons & New York Giants. There was an Player-Manager for the Evansville Ex-Collegians in 1920 with an Irish name: Allen “Pat” McGinnis. Youngstown Patricians included players with names such as Ray Kenealy, Kennedy, Connors and Corcoran.

About the APFA (American Professional Football Association)

After spirallaing wages threatened to destroy the game with players continually jumping from team to team in the Ohio, Pennsylvania & New York Pro Football Circuits, looking for the best pay packet, four teams from Ohio – the Akron Pros, Canton Bulldogs, Cleveland Indians & Dayton Triangles, met in Canton, Ohio, to form a Pro Football League, and invited the top teams from Ohio, New York & Pennsylvania to join them in order to play under a common set of rules, and better organise finances. These states were the hotbed of Pro Football in USA, and the League they formed, the American Professional Football Association, changed its’ name for the 1922 season to the National Football League, laying the foundations for the hugely popular, and lucrative NFL of today.

In its early days, the NFL was still a Minor League, second to College Football in terms of status in the eyes of the Media & fans, and far less popular than Baseball. In 1926 it decided to consolidate the best players on the rosters of a fewer teams, reducing the league from 22 teams to 12. There was no official schedule in 1920, teams arranged their own schedules, often against non-APFA teams. There was a nine week regular season, followed by semi-official playoffs aranged after the season ended to determine a champion between the top 5 in the APFA. In total 14 teams entered the APFA season in 1920, although one – the Muncie Flyers disbanded after one big loss at the start and reformed three weeks from the end only playing from then on Independent teams. Another three teams who played APFA teams also appear to have only played a half schedule of four games – Cincinnati Celts, Toledo Maroons and Youngstown Patricians. Other Independently Scheduled teams also played matches against APFA teams – there were 20 of these in Total. The Cincinnati Celts, Toledo Maroons and Minneapolis Marines, although officially Independent were to join the APFA in 1921 and in 1920 played the bulk of their games versus APFA teams and so are included in the Unofficial APFA Standings by Eirball. The Other 17 Independent teams who played APFA teams are included in their own Unofficial Independent Schedule Standings.

Week 1 Report

Canton Bulldogs, the team who formed the APFA a year previously, easily disposed of non-APFA team Pitcairn Quakers from Pennsylvania 48-0. Another Ohio team, and also early favourite for the title, Akron Pros similarly defeated Wheeling Stogies of West Virginia 43-0. In Upsate New York, Buffalo All-Americans won 32-6 versus All-Buffalo and Rochester Jeffersons defeated All-Buffalo 10-0. All four of those games were between an APFA team and an Independent team. Meanwhile, two non-APFA games in Ohio featured Irish teams which were later to play APFA teams: Cincinnati Celts winning 6-0 versus Fort Wayne Friars; and Youngstown Patricians, who claimed the World Championship in 1916, who won 21-0 at home versus Sharon. Decatur Staleys, who in two years were to become the Chicago Bears, but who even then in 1920 were still coached by legendary Bears coach George Halas, had some trouble with non-APFA team Moline Tractors, winning 20-0.

All-Tonawanda knocked off Cleveland Panthers 38-0 in another game between two non-APFA teams who were to play APFA teams later in the season. Rock Island Independents of Illinois, who the week previously had defeated St. Paul’s Ideals 48-0 in the first game to feature an APFA team, were this week involved in a one-sided game with Muncie Flyers of Indiana. The Independents were 31-0 up at halftime and took it easy in the second half winning 45-0. All other APFA teams cancelled games with Muncie following this fearing low gate recepits from a match with a sub-standard team. The other APFA game that week besides the Rock Island-Muncie game that featured two APFA teams, in fact, the first ever game featuring two APFA teams saw Dayton Triangles defeat Columbus Panhandles, both from Ohio, 14-0.



[1] National Football League (2014) “Past Standings | 1920-1926” 2014 Official NFL Record & Factbook” pg. 398-399. National football League, Time Home Entertainment. 2014.

[2] The Growth of a Game (2015) The Complete List of European NFL Players [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 11 October 2019]

[3] Pro Football Archives (2019) Detroit Heralds 1920 [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 11 October 2019]

[4] Arizona Cardinals (2020) Schedule [1920] [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[5]  Marc S. Maltby, The Coffin Corner Vol. 14 No. 4, Pro Football Researchers Association (1992) Evansville 1920-1922: The Early Stuggles of Professional Football – [Internet] Available from:   [Accessed 18 September 2020]

[6] Arizona Cardinals | Wayback Machine (2009) All-Time Results [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 september 2020]

[7] Bob Carroll, The Coffin Corner Vol. 4 No. 12, Pro Football Researchers Association (1982) Akron Pros 1920 – [Internet] Available from:  Accessed 18 September 2020]

[8] Chicago Bears (2020) Schedule [1920] [Internet] available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[10] Google News: Youngsown Vindicator, October 4, 1920. Canton Trims Pitcairn Team [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[11] Google News: Youngsown Vindicator, October 11, 1920. pg. 10 Canton Stops Toledo Eleven [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[12] Google News: Youngsown Vindicator, October 11, 1920. pg. 10 Panhandles lose to Akron [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[13] Google News: Toledo News-Bee, October 18, 1920. Canton beats Cleveland [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[14] Google News: Youngstown Vindicator, October 25, 1920. pg. 11 Thorpe saves Canton Eleven with 2 Goals [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[15] Google News: Youngstown Vindicator, November 1, 1920. pg. 15 Akron Takes Canton in Great Game [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[16] Google News: Youngstown Vindicator, November 22, 1920. pg. 15 Canton Downs Buffalo Team [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[17] Google News: The Sunday Chronicle, December 5, 1920. pg. 15 Tigers tame Thorpe’s Bulldogs [Internet] Available from:,1102615&dq=canton+bulldogs&hl=en [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[18] NFL | WAyback Machine (2010) Thanksgiving serves up classic games [Internet] Available from: [accessed 19 september 2020]

[19] New York Times December 5, 1920 All-Americans win Pro Gridiron Game [Internet] Available from: [acessed 19 september 2020] [See PDF]

[20] Pro Football Archives (2020) New Haven Washington Glees [Internet] available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[21] Pro Football Archives (2020) Phoenixville Union AA [Internet] available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[22] Rochester Jeffersons (2020) 1920 Season {Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020][See PDF]

[23] Dayton Triangles (2020) Dayton APFA / NFL Summary [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[24] Dayton Triangles (2020) Dayton APFA / NFL Summary [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[25] Dayton Triangles (2020) Dayton APFA / NFL Clubs Official Games [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[26] Bills Backers | Wayback Machine (2001) History of Pro football in Western New York 1920-1939 [Internet] Available from: [accessed 19 September 2020]

[27] Sports Encyclopedia (2020) Muncie Flyers [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[28] Roy Sye, The Coffin Corner Vol. 24 No. 3, Pro Football Researchers Association (2002) Muncie Flyers 1920 – [Internet] Available from:  Accessed 18 September 2020]

[29] Google News: Toledo News-Bee, November 1, 1920 pg. 11. Brickley Boy Wins for Cleveland [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[30] Google News: Youngstown Vindicator, November 29, 1920. pg. 15 Pat’s defeat Panhandles in last game [Internet] Available from:  [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[31] Case Western Reserve University (2020) Cleveland Tigers [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[32] Google News: Youngstown Vindicator, November 15, 1920. pg. 15 Patricians defeat St. Edwards at Idora 10-0 [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[33] Detroit Free Press. October 11, 1920. p. 13. “Heralds Trim Panthers 40-14: Vogel, Cleveland Star Right Halfback, in Hospital From Injuries”.

[34] Detroit Free Press. October 18, 1920. p. 11. “FLUKY KICKS GIVE CHICAGO THE GAME: Detroit Heralds Lose Hard Fought Game, 12 to 0”.

[35] Detroit Free Press. October 25, 1920. p. 12. “Heralds Get Lonely Tally: Fitzgerald Intercepts Forward Pass, Runs 85 Yards to Beat Pan Handles; Local Team Plays Good Game as Do the Visitors; Big Crowd Out”.

[36] Detroit Free Press. November 1, 1920. p. 15. “HERALDS BEATEN BY LARGE SCORE: Three Blocked Punts Turn Detroit Team Back”.

[37] Detroit Free Press. November 15, 1920. p. 14. “Heralds Draw at Ft. Wayne”.

[38] Detroit Free Press. November 29, 1920. p. 11. “No Scoring in Title Battle: Neither Lansing Nor Champion Heralds Are Able to Tally on Muddy Gridiron; Visitors Outgain Locals but Long Forward Pass Almost Beats Them”.

[39]  Detroit Free Press. December 6, 1920. p. 11. “EACH ELEVEN SCORES ONCE: Heralds and Maroons Go to 7-7 Tie on Muddy Grid Sunday Afternoon”.

[40] Rock Island Independents (2020) 1920 R.I. Independents [Read All About It][1920] [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 18 September 2020]

[41] Decatur Staleys (2020) Staleys [Internet] Available from: [accessed 19 September 2020]

[42] Bob Carroll, The Coffin Corner Vol. 10 No. 4, Pro Football Researchers Association (1988) George Roudebush – [Internet] Available from:  Accessed 19 September 2020]

[43] Jim Quirk, The Coffin Corner Vol. 20 No. 1, Pro Football Researchers Association (1998) The Minneapolis Marines – Minnesota’s Forgotten NFL Team – [Internet] Available from: Accessed 19 September 2020][Also Available at: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[44] Website (2009) Toledo Maroons [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[45] Cleveland (2015) 100 Years ago, were Youngstown Patricians pro football’s world champs? (photos) [Internet] available from: [Accessed 20 September 2020]

[46] Google News: Youngsown Vindicator, October 11, 1920 pg. 10. Akron downs “Pats” in close contest [Internet] Available from: [Accessed 19 September 2020]

[47] Google News: Youngstown Vindicator, October 4, 1920. pg. 14 Sharon beaten by Patricians [Internet] Available from:  [Accessed 20 September 2020]

[48] Anon. (1920) “State Sports” Charlerston Daily Mail, Wednesday, October 6, 1920. Pg. 2 [Internet] Available from the Newspaper Archive at: [Accessed 13 August 2021]

[52] Anon. (1920) “Hoffman Team wins” Syracuse Herald. Monday, 4 October, 1920. pg. [Internet] Available from the Newspaper Archive: [Accessed 13 August 2021]


Thanks to Decy Maher.


Researched, compiled and written by Enda Mulcahy for the

Eirball | Irish, North American & World Sports Archive

Last Updated: 13 August 2021

(c) Copyright Enda Mulcahy and Eirball 2020-2021

You may quote this document in part provided that proper acknowledgement is given to the authors. All Rights Reserved. The Logos and Photos used in this article remain the property of the organisations and individuals which own the copyright and are used here for educational and information purposes only.

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