The Hamilton Tigers won their second title in three years in a controversial 13-7 win over the Toronto Rowing and Athletic Association in the 1915 Grey Cup.
Toronto outplayed Hamilton on a wet and slippery Varsity Stadium field in the first half. Despite this, T.R. and A.A. could only manage a 4-1 lead at halftime. George Bickle booted a field goal for Toronto in the first quarter.
The Tigers came out charging in the second half and took a 7-4 lead. Jack Erskine carried the ball 15 yards around the end for a try, which was converted by Sam Manson.
Before the end of the third quarter Hal DeGruchy kicked a pair of long punts for rouges to cut the Toronto deficit to 7-6.
But the Tigers scored the winning points in the fourth quarter on a controversial touchdown when Norman Lutz found an opening and squeezed through for a try. Toronto’s wings gave up on the play believing an offside interference penalty would be called. It was not, and Hamilton had a 12-6 advantage.
T.R. and A.A. had a golden opportunity to tie the score when an onside kick gave them the ball on Hamilton’s one-yard line. But the Tigers held their ground on three straight plays, nixing Toronto’s opportunity. Both teams traded rouges to end the scoring.
The usually subdued Toronto crowd was so enraged with referee “Ready” Dixon following the game that a mob of people went after him to give him a verbal lashing. The police stepped in before things got out of control, and ushered Dixon into the safety of the T.R. and A.A. dressing room.
In a move that confused some people in later years, the Tigers had a shield made for the Grey Cup in honour of their 1908 championship team. This was, in part, revenge against the University of Toronto for holding onto the trophy in years which it did not win the Dominion championship in 1912 and 1913. The 1908 shield still remains attached to the original base of the trophy.
With the First World War raging in Europe, both teams donated their share of the gate receipts to patriotic funds. It was the last time the Grey Cup was contested until after the War.