Saginaw High and Arthur Hill - Michigan's oldest intracity rivalry

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First I’d like to apologize to Clinton and Morenci High Schools. Tonight, they will battle for the Tri County Conference title. Good luck to both squads. May you both play well and no one get injured.

The real reason for my post today is to talk about Saginaw High and Saginaw Arthur Hill. Tonight, they will meet for the 111th time in 113 years. They haven’t missed a game since the 1910 season. As far as series records go, Arthur Hill leads with 53 wins and Saginaw has 47. There have been 11 ties. Arthur Hill dominated the series, winning every game from 1971 through the 1993 season. Saginaw High has dominated since the Centennial Game in 1994, winning 10 of 13.

Both squads have won multiple state championships. Arthur Hill had one of the finest seasons by any team, ever. In 1973 they went undefeated, un-scored upon. They tallied 443 points to their opponent zero. In 1991, they won it again, beating Detroit Catholic Central 13-12. The Lumberjacks made it back the following year, but lost to Detroit Catholic Central this time 21-20. Jim Eurick, now athletic director and football coach at Bay City Western was the coach for The Hill most of that winning streak, losing only twice to Saginaw before he left in 1996.

Saginaw High has three state championships. They won the 1907, 1944, and 1999. One interesting fact is that the quarterback in 1907 was Frank Picard. His son, John, was the quarterback for the 1944 state champions. Michigan State great Charles Rogers played on the 1999 state championship team. Coach Durrett was a great coach and only quit coaching when he moved into the assistant principal position at The High. He won 100 games during his short tenure as the head coach. There are currently nine players in the NFL who went to Saginaw High and played under Coach Durrett. There would be 10, but we know what happened to CRog.

I’ll be at this game tonight. The Historical Society of Saginaw County where I work will be doing a small display at the game. We recently acquired a trophy called “The Horn.” The story they told me is that it was the trophy between the two schools, dating back to the late 1890’s. The two schools would steal it back and forth, and at one point they even threw it into the Saginaw River to hide it. It was stolen in 1928 and no one had seen it since, until it was donated to the museum about two months ago. The river is the dividing point in Saginaw. Saginaw High on the east side and Arthur Hill on the west. It’s also a racial and economical divider, but this isn’t about sociology, it’s about football. We will also have the Letterman's Trophy, which has the bronzed football from their first Thanksgiving Day game in 1909 on top.

Last night, the Saginaw Downtown Lions Club (of which I am a member as of July) sponsored the 85th Little Brown Jug Game. It’s always been a game for the scrub players, the second team guys. Now they’re called JV and there isn’t as many second team players, it’s more underclassmen. The Mighty Trojans defeated the Lumberjacks 16-14. AHHS had their chance when they scored with 43 seconds left in the game, but they failed on their two point attempt twice (penalty on Saginaw, but SHS stopped them twice).

One last thing I want to mention is the Mighty Marching Trojan Band. Their style is that of a traditional African American college. New Years Day, they will be the only band from the state of Michigan to be playing at the Allstate Sugar Bowl. Congrats to JC and her band. I have to say that they are amazing to watch (and listen to).