Venue: Varsity Stadium
Location: Toronto, ON
Date: November 25
Winning Coach: Dr. A.B. Wright
The University of Toronto’s Grey Cup dynasty continued in 1911, when they defeated their cross-town rival Toronto Argonauts at the new Varsity Stadium. How new was the venue? The final nail was driven into the stadium just 90 minutes before kickoff.
A record of crowd of 13,687 was the largest to see a football game in Canada to date. Six tons of straw was piled onto the field to protect the turf from an expected blizzard, which hit Toronto the day prior to the game. But the straw was no match for Mother Nature as the field was frozen solid, making the footing treacherous.
Both teams had their difficulties holding onto the ball, with Varsity being the chief offenders, especially when handling punts. But because these errors were made in midfield, they didn’t hurt the students. It was a different story for the Argonauts, who gave up two tries as a result of fumbles.
Varsity actually faced a deficit for the first time in three visits to the Grey Cup, when Ross Binkley kicked a rouge for the Argonauts in the opening two minutes of the game. They kept Varsity off the scoreboard until the second quarter when Billy Mallet fumbled a punt and accidentally kicked the ball into the end zone. Allan Ramsay recovered it for a try, which Jack Maynard converted to give Varsity a 6-1 lead.
The students scored another try in the third quarter when Binkley fumbled on a punt return along the Argonauts goal line, which Frank Knight recovered and crossed the line for the major. Maynard converted to give Varsity a 13-3 lead.
Binkley kicked a field goal to pull the Argonauts within seven, but Varsity put up a stubborn defence the rest of the game. Both teams traded rouges, but neither threatened the end zone, giving the students their third straight championship.
Varsity’s Allan Ramsay had his left eye cut open on the frozen turf in the second quarter, which he got stitched up at halftime.
It was Varsity’s final appearance in the Grey Cup until 1914, although the students kept the trophy for the next three years. They believed they could rightfully hold on to the mug until another team defeated them in the championship game.