History of Lehigh University’s Athletic Extra- Curriculum, 1866-1998

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This study adds to scholarship on intercollegiate athletics in the United States by analyzing the efforts of one school to balance its athletic ambitions with its academic priorities. It highlights the individuals and groups who participated in helping to build the athletic extra-curriculum at Lehigh University, and by extension, shaped the school’s athletic culture.


“What Smith’s scholarly text demonstrates, is that a larger athletic extra-curriculum shapes an institution’s athletic culture... The nurturing of an athletic culture which helped instill the character traits needed for post-graduate careers, will be of broad interest and is a feature, in spite of or complimentary to, the university’s academic goals.”
-Dr. Glenn Reynolds,
University of Sunderland, UK

Table of Contents

Chapter One:

Rushes, Scrubs, Cheering and Subscriptions
-The Nationwide Sporting Boom
-American College Athletics
-A Polytechnic Institution
-Athletics at Lehigh University
-A True University
-Athletics and Class Identity
-Intercollegiate Sports and Student Agency
-The Duties of Lehigh Students
Chapter Two:
-Athletics as University Policy
-Reform and Promotion Nationally
-The Era of Faculty Dominance
-The Alumnus President
-The Department of Physical Education
- Student Agency and Wrestling
-Athletic Subsidization
-War and Athletics
Chapter Three:
Athletics for All vs. Victories at All Costs
-A Whirlwind of Activity
-A Sport for Every Student
-Growing Intercollegiate Opportunities
-A Decade of Successes
-“Beat Lafayette!”
-The Board of Control
Chapter Four:
-Purity and Its Discontents
-The National Purity Battle in the 1930s
-Riots and Mascots
-Pure Athletics for All
-The Lamentable Board of Control
-A New Deal for Lehigh
-Purity Abandoned
-Student Agency and Ice Hockey
Chapter Five:
Wrestling as a Religion
-National Battles over Athletic Purity
-Renewed Concerns about American Men
-Student Initiative at Postwar Lehigh
-Athletics and Academics
-An Era and a New Beginning
-An Era of Triumphs
Chapter Six:
“We’re Coed Now”
-Coeducation and Women’s Athletics
-The First Opening for Coeducation
-The Lehigh Woman before 1971
-The Great Debate
-The End of bachelorhood
-Establishing a Foundation
-Striving Toward Equity
Chapter Seven:
Everything’s Changing
-A Face-off in Big-Time Football
-The Ivy League Finds a Partner
-The Murray H. Goodman Campus
-Wrestling Worries
-A New League, Old Ideals
-Bowing to Big-Time Pressures

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