Wayne University Defeats Michigan Normal at Washtenaw CC – 1940

Wayne University Defeats Michigan Normal at Washtenaw Country Club – 1940

In addition to my usual teaching duties, this fall I’m taking on the job of mentoring a student teacher from Eastern Michigan University.

From 1853 to 1956, Eastern was known either as Michigan State Normal School, or Michigan State Normal College. Students were known as Normies.

Normal Schools were teacher preparation programs. Michigan State Normal was the first in the nation to have a four-year program.

Shirley Spork, one of the LPGA’s legendary thirteen Founders, was a student at Michigan Normal, earning a degree in teaching physical education. Between classes, Spork would sometimes play rounds at Washtenaw Golf Club.

Wayne University — now known as Wayne State University — started as Detroit Medical College in 1868, but later merged with the Detroit Normal Training School for Teachers, the Detroit Junior College and Detroit City Law School to form what now is Wayne State.

At any rate, all of this was prompted by an article I found in the May 7, 1940 Detroit Free Press in which the Wayne University golf team defeated Michigan Normal at Washtenaw Golf Club.

The record shows that Wayne University defeated Michigan Normal 14 to 4, but I am not at all sure what scoring system they were using. It looks like stroke play, but there also is a best ball component.

Washtenaw seems to have hosted quite a few of Michigan Normal’s competitions. It may even have been their home course. Spork told me that the club let her practice for free.

These days, Eastern Michigan’s home course is Eagle Crest, just across I-94 from the main campus.

The same day, the University of Michigan’s golf team defeated Northwestern 16 1/2 to 10 1/2.

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