Helms Athletic Foundation/Bill Schroeder National Champions of college football 1883-1982
1883 Yale, 8-0-0
1884 Yale, 8-0-1
1885 Princeton, 9-0-0
1886 Yale, 9-0-1
1887 Yale, 9-0-0
1888 Yale, 13-0-0
1889 Princeton, 10-0-0
1890 Harvard, 11-0-0
1891 Yale, 13-0-0
1892 Yale, 13-0-0
1893 Princeton, 11-0-0
1894 Yale, 16-0-0
1895 Pennsylvania, 14-0-0
1896 Princeton, 10-0-1
1897 Pennsylvania, 15-0-0
1898 Harvard, 11-0-0
1899 Harvard, 10-0-1
1900 Yale, 12-0-0
1901 Michigan, 11-0-0
1902 Michigan, 11-0-0
1903 Princeton, 11-0-0
1904 Pennsylvania, 12-0-0
1905 Chicago, 11-0-0
1906 Princeton, 9-0-1
1907 Yale, 9-0-1
1908 Pennsylvania, 11-0-1
1909 Yale, 10-0-0
1910 Harvard, 8-0-1
1911 Princeton, 8-0-2
1912 Harvard, 9-0-0
1913 Harvard, 9-0-0
1914 Army, 9-0-0
1915 Cornell, 9-0-0
1916 Pittsburgh, 8-0-0
1917 Georgia Tech, 9-0-0
1918 Pittsburgh, 4-1-0
1919 Harvard, 9-0-1
1920 California, 9-0-0
1921 Cornell, 8-0-0
1922 Cornell, 8-0-0
1923 Illinois, 8-0-0
1924 Notre Dame, 10-0-0
1925 Alabama, 10-0-0
1926 Alabama, 9-0-1 and Stanford, 10-0-1
1927 Illinois, 7-0-1
1928 Georgia Tech, 10-0-0
1929 Notre Dame, 9-0-0
1930 Notre Dame, 10-0-0
1931 USC, 10-1-0
1932 USC, 10-0-0
1933 Michigan, 7-0-1
1934 Minnesota, 8-0-0
1935 Minnesota, 8-0-0
1936 Minnesota, 7-1-0
1937 California, 10-0-1
1938 TCU, 11-0-0
1939 Texas A&M, 11-0-0
1940 Stanford, 10-0-0
1941 Minnesota, 8-0-0
1942 Wisconsin, 8-1-1
1943 Notre Dame, 9-1-0
1944 Army, 9-0-0
1945 Army, 9-0-0
1946 Army, 9-0-1 and Notre Dame, 8-0-1
1947 Notre Dame, 9-0-0 and Michigan, 10-0-0
1948 Michigan, 9-0-0
1949 Notre Dame, 10-0-0
1950 Oklahoma, 10-1-0
1951 Michigan State, 9-0-0
1952 Michigan State, 9-0-0
1953 Notre Dame, 9-0-1
1954 UCLA, 9-0-0 and Ohio State, 10-0-0
1955 Oklahoma, 11-0-0
1956 Oklahoma, 10-0-0
1957 Auburn, 10-0-0
1958 LSU, 11-0-0
1959 Syracuse, 11-0-0
1960 Washington, 10-1-0
1961 Alabama, 11-0-0
1962 USC, 11-0-0
1963 Texas, 11-0-0
1964 Arkansas, 11-0-0
1965 Michigan State, 10-1-0
1966 Notre Dame, 9-0-1 and Michigan State, 9-0-1
1967 USC, 10-1-0
1968 Ohio State, 10-0-0
1969 Texas, 11-0-0
1970 Nebraska, 11-0-1
1971 Nebraska, 13-0-0
1972 USC, 12-0-0
1973 Notre Dame, 11-0-0
1974 Oklahoma, 11-0-0 and USC, 10-1-1
1975 Ohio State, 11-1-0 and Oklahoma, 11-1-0
1976 Pittsburgh, 12-0-0
1977 Notre Dame, 11-1-0
1978 Alabama, 11-1-0 and Oklahoma, 11-1-0 and USC, 12-1-0
1979 Alabama, 12-0-0
1980 Georgia, 12-0-0
1981 Clemson, 12-0-0
1982 Penn State, 11-1-0 and SMU, 11-0-1
No selections after 1982.
Named for Paul Helms who died in 1957 at the age of 67.
   Did you ever look at a list of college football national champions that showed the Helms selections up to 1935 and the AP poll champions since 1936?  Or the Helms selections up to 1923 and the Dickinson national championship selections starting in 1924?  It gives the impression that the Helms selections ended with either 1935 or 1923.  My question: If the Helms list was good enough for the years prior to 1936 or prior to 1924, why aren't they good enough for the years since 1936 and/or since 1924?
   As can be seen by the selection of Wisconsin in 1942, for example, these selections do not always represent the contemporary consensus.  In the final AP poll of 1942, Wisconsin received four first place votes.  Ahead of them in this final poll were Ohio State with 84 first place votes and Georgia with 62 first place votes.
   With regard to those "point a minute" Michigan teams which Helms named national champions in 1901 and 1902, keep in mind that prior to this time the only schools to be recognized as champions of college football were Yale, Princeton, Harvard and Pennsylvania.  At the time of Michigan's 1901-1905 success, the Wolverines had never defeated any of them.  It has been said that in order to be the champion one must first beat the champion, and Michigan did not defeat any of these four eastern teams until 1909 when they beat Pennsylvania 12-6.  Through the 1908 season Michigan was 0-2 against Yale, 0-1 against Princeton, 0-3 against Harvard, and 0-4 against Pennsylvania.  It is hard to believe that if an AP poll existed in the years 1901-1905 that any of these Michigan teams would have been voted national champion over the Eastern champion.
   In my files I have a United Savings-Helms list of national champions starting with 1900 and ending with 1970.  In this list, Alabama alone is listed as national champion in 1926, Army alone in 1946, Notre Dame alone in 1947, and UCLA alone in 1954.  Also in my files I have a Citizens Savings Athletic Foundation (formerly Helms Athletic Foundation) list of national champions starting with 1883 and ending with 1976.  In this list, Stanford is listed as co-national champion in 1926, Notre Dame in 1946, Michigan in 1947, and Ohio State in 1954.  Sometime between 1971 and 1976 extra national champions were added retroactively.  In the 1900-1970 list, both Michigan State and Notre Dame are listed as co-national champions in 1966, so this dual national championship selection is not retroactive.

Bob Kirlin <cfrabob@hotmail.com>