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Gazette and Bulletin: December 17, 1936 – Larry Kelley Accepts Heisman Trophy

Lawrence Morgan Kelley, Williamsport’s proud contribution to the All-American list, whose pigskin heroics provided the most glorious chapter in Yale’s gridiron lore, hauled down his house, as he accepted the John H. Heisman Trophy as the outstanding college football player of 1936. As 750 banqueteers, among them his mother and father honored him at the

Lawrence Morgan Kelley, Williamsport’s proud contribution to the All-American list, whose pigskin heroics provided the most glorious chapter in Yale’s gridiron lore, hauled down his house, as he accepted the John H. Heisman Trophy as the outstanding college football player of 1936.

As 750 banqueteers, among them his mother and father honored him at the presentation ceremony, Kelley picked up the ball and scored the winning touchdown of the luncheon with his wit.

“Fellow Rotarians…” he began as the audience rolled with laughter and kept on rolling. “I represent only the voice of the Yale team — as the press would have it.”

“Football is a big business and the press made it so it seems there is nothing the press can’t do. Why they even put a halo on the Fordham line and called them “the seven blocks of granite.”

As he sat down clutching the big bronze trophy given by the Downtown Athletic Club as recognition of the year’s greatest college football player — an honor won last year by Jay Berwanger of the University of Chicago — was given a standing ovation that lasted several minutes.

Kelley’s spirit pervaded the presentation ceremony and luncheon.

Coach Raymond “Ducky” Pond of Yale, said that in 1933 when Kelley was a freshman, Mal Stevens, then Eli coach, told him Kelley was sure to become one the greatest passers in football.”
“I didn’t believe him then, but he was right,” said Coach Pond. “Kelley was more than an All-American football player, He was a fine leader, had gobs of color and was a great crowd pleaser with ability to rise to the heights when it meant the difference between defeat and victory.”

Compiled by Lou Hunsinger Jr.

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