1923 Louisiana Tech-Centenary College Game

A reader submitted the photo included at the bottom of this post. I’m sorry that it isn’t clearer but this is what I was sent. I have never seen or even heard of one of these buttons before. It is purported to be a button for the 1923 Louisiana Tech-Centenary College annual Thanksgiving Day game. I can’t make out the date from the button but believe that it is authentic because Louisiana Tech played Centenary on Thanksgiving Day in 1922 and 1923, both years that Dietz coached in the Pelican State. Also, it seems unlikely that a forger would pick a relatively obscure event rather than one that would generate more interest (read a higher price). Let’s talk a little about Lone Star’s time in Ruston, Louisiana.

Lone Star coached the Bulldogs for two years compiling an 11-3-1 record with two of the losses coming at the hands of the Centenary Gentlemen. Less than half of those games were played at home at a time when strong teams generally played most of their games at home. (Note that Carlisle Indian School and Haskell Institute were strong teams that played most of their games on the road, a factor that makes their records all the more astounding.) Louisiana Tech had done well before Dietz’s arrival but against weaker opposition. He was apparently hired to upgrade the program and he did.

No reason was given for Dietz’s departure for Wyoming but money cannot be discounted. Wyoming wanted to upgrade its program and hired Dietz to do that. Also, Dietz had remarried in early 1922 to a woman from Indiana and may have needed more income. Even when single, the dapper Dietz was never known as being a miser.

Dietz’s history of putting life into previously lifeless programs while compiling a Hall-of-Fame worthy record is a strong argument for his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.

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