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Classic Covers: Football is Rough on Everyone!

Are you ready for some football? Since 1900, The Saturday Evening Post has featured football and football fans on its covers, so grab a cold one and some chips and enjoy!

Rainy Football Game by Douglas Crockwell

Rainy Football Game by Douglas Crockwell

Rainy Football Game
Douglas Crockwell
November 15, 1941

Are you ready for some football? Since 1900, The Saturday Evening Post has featured football and football fans on its covers, so grab a cold one and some chips and enjoy!

Quarterback Pass by Maurice Bower

Quarterback Pass by Maurice Bower

Quarterback Pass
Maurice Bower
October 12, 1935

Maurice Bower (1889-1980) was an artist who could capture action: racing horses, men jumping hurdles and, of course, a quarterback making a pass. He was a medical illustrator for the army in World War I. He did fourteen covers for the Post, and this one from 1935 takes you right to the heart of the action. Love the strain on the guy’s face.

Tackled by Norman Rockwell

Tackled by Norman Rockwell

Tackled
Norman Rockwell
November 21, 1925

Omphf! Norman Rockwell shows just what a rough sport this can be. After this hard tackle in 1925, somebody is going to have a sore belly…if not a cracked rib or two. And this is just a kids’ game.

Dog on the Field by Lonie Bee

Dog on the Field by Lonie Bee

Dog on the Field
Lonie Bee
October 18, 1941

Players aren’t the only ones who have a rough time of it. The ref has a hard job too, especially when Spot decides he’s in to play. This cover by artist Lonie Bee is from 1941.

Ref Out Cold by Stevan Dohanos

Ref Out Cold by Stevan Dohanos

Ref Out Cold
Stevan Dohanos
November 25, 1950

Talk about a tough job! Artist Stevan Dohanos “witnessed this catastrophe at a Yale-Dartmouth conflict last year,” wrote the Post editors in 1950. “Everybody but the wounded man was amused, and Dohanos reflected callously, Ah a delightful cover scene!” The poor ref in real life was Leo Weinrott who “suffered disengaged leg muscles when a young giant accidentally steam-rollered over him. He tottered on about his terrifying duties until, stubbing a cleat while running backward, he had to be removed from the battlefield on a litter.” Fortunately, there’s a happy ending: “This fall,” noted the editors, “he survived the Yale-Cornell and other Donnybrooks with hardly a contusion. He thinks the cover is droll.”

Cheerleaders After a Losing Game by Lonie Bee

Cheerleaders After Losing a Game by Lonie Bee

Cheerleaders After Losing a Game
Lonie Bee
November 18, 1939

And don’t think being a cheerleader is all fun and games, either. When you cheer your heart out and the team loses, it’s a sad day. These cheerleaders (all male!) from a 1939 cover are completely bummed. Even the adorable mascot is down and out.

Sitting on the Wrong Side by Gene Pelham

Sitting on the Wrong Side by Gene Pelham

Sitting on the Wrong Side
Gene Pelham
November 15, 1941

We would never forget you, the great American football fan. How you have suffered! You bundle up against the cold, tough it out and root for your team and your little blue pennant is being overwhelmed by the sea of yellow pennants belonging to the winning team. Great facial expression by little known artist Gene Pelham. It says it all. There’s always the next game!

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