Welcome to the 1960s for our latest Pac-12 Friday series entry examining league MVPs for the Conference of Champions and its Midwest adversary, the B1G. This is a year where we took a mythical national title away from one of our featured teams below, by the way.
With that mysterious clue left out there to ponder, here we go again!
1960 AAWU MVP: Billy Kilmer, UCLA
Still with just five teams in the conference, the standings were perfectly symmetrical: Washington (4-0); USC (3-1); UCLA (2-2); California (1-3); and Stanford (0-4). Bruins quarterback Billy Kilmer dominated the league, throwing 8 touchdown passes (and 8 interceptions), while running for a conference-high 803 yards and 8 TDs. But with two conference losses, can we give him the nod?
His 1,889 total yards were almost twice that of the next-best player, so we don’t feel we really have a choice. UCLA did lose to the Huskies by just 2 points on the road, and if the Bruins had won that game, they’d have won the conference championship. That’s good enough for us, as UCLA did beat ranked teams from Pitt and Duke during the regular season as well.
1960 B1G MVP: Tom Matte, Ohio State
Iowa (5-1) and Minnesota (6-1) tied for the conference title, but with a head-to-head win over the Hawkeyes, the Golden Gophers get the nod historically speaking. Ohio State (5-2) and Michigan State (4-2) were also in the discussion for the league championship. How does this shake out for an MVP designation, though?
Buckeyes QB Tom Matte topped the league in total yards (737 passing, 682 rushing), while throwing 8 TDs and just 4 INTs. Meanwhile, Ohio State RB Bob Ferguson led the conference in rushing (853 yards) and total TDs (13). No players from from the Iowa or Minnesota teams really stood out on offense, although the Golden Gophers defense gave up less than 9 points per game for the year.
In the end, we have to go with Matte here and his 10 total TDs, as his was able to guide the Buckeyes through the air and on the ground—without Matte, after all, Ferguson doesn’t get as many yards and scores himself. Ohio State finished 7-2 on the year, and a 3-point road loss to Purdue cost them a share of the league title.
1960 Rose Bowl MVP: Bob Schloredt, Washington (original, confirmed)
The Huskies won their second straight Rose Bowl with a 17-7 victory over the Golden Gophers, and Washington QB Bob Schloredt won the MVP vote (again). This time we will confirm his award, however, as the Huskies went up 17-0 at halftime behind a Schloredt TD pass and a Schloredt TD run. He ran for a game-best 68 yards on just 5 carries, as Washington bulldozed Minnesota into submission early.
Schloredt only completed 2 of his 4 passes for 16 yards, but he didn’t throw any INTs. Meanwhile, the Gophers QB threw 3 picks, and that was a huge difference in the game as well, showing how well Schloredt played in the win.