Winter can be a very brutal and miserable time for most students on campus who have to walk to class in freezing temperatures or find a way to make the commute on icy or snowy roads. More than likely, students look forward to spending those cold snowy days sitting inside in their pajamas drinking hot chocolate. 90 years ago students on campus found a different way to embrace the winter weather. February 1923 featured the much-anticipated annual ‘snow fight’ between the freshmen and their rivals, the sophomores.
There have been many contests in the past that have put the freshmen up against the sophomores, but nothing was quite like this one. More than 250 students came out to the snow fight which took place on the football field each year. The event was well planned and well organized by both classes of students. This particular year, the freshmen outnumbered the sophomores 4 to 1 and were better prepared with attack strategies as well as reinforcements. The action was delayed an hour and a half due to the sophomores waiting for additional assistance that never showed up. The impatient freshman pelted the handful of sophomores with snowballs before the battle even started. During the epic clash, the sophomores suffered numerous ambushes from all angles until there was nothing left to do but accept defeat.
They may have just been lowly freshmen “rats” in the eyes of their rivals, but on this day, the freshmen went home with the taste of victory while the sophomores went home cold, wet, and beaten.
To read more about contests between freshmen and sophomores at UMD check out: https://umdarchives.wordpress.com/2013/01/02/life-among-the-lower-classes-rats-and-rivalries/