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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

100 years ago today: Chronicle sports editor launches series on football prospects for Pacific Coast and Northwest conferences

 (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)
Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

George Varnell, “sporting editor for the Chronicle,” launched a series of columns on the prospects of the college football teams in the Pacific Coast and Northwest conferences.

Varnell had particular expertise in this area, and not just because he was a sportswriter. He was also a veteran football referee “who has watched the development of the two conferences from their infancy, and has been the official in charge of games between every one of the various affiliated teams.”

His first column examined the prospects of the University of Idaho’s team, which was sporting a “strong nucleus of veterans.”

He noted, however, that it was not a particularly “big team.” In an eye-opening example of the difference between 1923 college football and today’s version, Varnell said the Idaho players averaged between 175 and 178 pounds.

From the mouthwash file: James Wilton told a judge that he had discovered an excellent toothpaste and mouthwash: wood alcohol.

However, Wilton had a habit of taking his dental hygiene a bit too far.

He was arrested in Elk when police received a call that “a man had gone crazy from drinking wood alcohol.” Deputies found Wilton intoxicated; he had drunk a half-pint of his mouthwash.

Records revealed that Wilton’s mouthwash had landed him in jail in Hillyard three or four times previously.

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1666: The Great Fire of London ends, leaving 13,200 houses destroyed and eight people dead.