On October 22, 1939, the now-essential link between professional football and television started. That's when the National Broadcasting Company made pro football history by becoming the first network to broadcast a game. The New York Giants hosted the Philadelphia Eagles at Roosevelt Stadium in New Jersey.
The first televised college football game was played on December 6, 1953, when Carnegie Tech defeated Pittsburgh, 21-7, in an exhibition game for the American Football Coaches Association's High School All-America Game in Chicago. The game attracted more than 90,000 viewers.
College football has been televised since the early 1950s, but it wasn't until the mid-1950s that most colleges and universities allowed the broadcasts to include their games. Even so, not all of these contests were shown live; rather, they were usually delayed 30 or 60 minutes after the fact. This is because when college football began to be televised, most stadiums had no television facilities installed, so the games would have required either a delay or a replay which could not be done at the time.
The first NCAA football game to be broadcast on television was the Michigan vs. Ohio State matchup on September 20, 1954. The game was seen by an estimated 500 people in Columbus, Ohio, and by an even smaller audience in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
After its games began to be aired nationally in the 1960s, pro football emerged as an equal to college football, but it took decades for the NFL to overtake college football. Even now, several universities have as many fans as certain NFL clubs.
The first season of televised college football games was in 1939, when Columbia University's radio program was re-broadcast over television station W2XAB (now WBTS-TV) in New York City. The Big Ten and Southern California schools were the only ones playing at that time, with Iowa playing Ohio State that year in Chicago. In addition to these games, a number of other contests between local colleges were also broadcast. This all changed in 1945, when the NCAA was founded to regulate college sports.
Before the NCAA, no government body regulated football, so each school could do whatever they wanted with their program. Some schools would become popular after a few years, like Alabama, while others wouldn't catch on until the late 1940s or early 1950s, like Miami (Ohio). Even within the same university, different departments might have different levels of success. For example, the football team at Harvard University had a great deal of success in the 1920s, but then didn't win any more titles until the mid-1950s.
With no governing body, schools could pay players anything they wanted.
Football's modern beginnings may be traced back to 1863 in England. Rugby football and association football, which were previously synonymous, split apart, and the Football Association was formed as the sport's first formal regulating organization. A group of English schoolboys invented the game that would later be known as soccer.
Kevin Markham is generally regarded as the creator of football. In 1863, he wrote a letter to The Sportsman describing the new game he had recently discovered. This led to several other letters being exchanged between the two men, and eventually Kevin's friend Charles Alcock agreed to bring out a book titled Football: Its Origin and History. This book contained details of all the letters exchanges and it is because of this that we know today that Kevin Markham is the father of football.
Also in 1863, William Alexander Smith created a new version of the game that was very similar to what is now known as rugby union. His version of the game was called "association football" and it was this version that became popular throughout most of Europe. It was only when players from England went abroad to play rugby league that people started calling the game soccer.
In 1866, a French player named Pierre de Coubertin began to organize games at the Paris University where they played with a ball that was kicked instead of thrown.