Alter, Spike : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Alter, Spike

Sidney S. Alter

Alter, who played at Penn State University in the late 1930s, was the captain of the football team in 1939. As a sophomore in 1937, he was named second team Jewish All-America by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

Birth and Death Dates:
b. August 24, 1915 - d. January 1988

Career Highlights:
In 1939, Alter was team captain of the Nittany Lions when they defeated Pitt for the first time in twenty years. The celebration caused the President of the University to cancel classes the following Monday. The previous year, Penn State had a record of 3-4-1, and their 5-1-2 record in 1939 became the beginning of an NCAA record of 49 consecutive winning seasons (the school would not have another losing season until 1987). Although the 1938 Nittany Lions posted a losing record, they are still in the NCAA record books. That year, they allowed the fewest passing yards per game in history (13.1 -- 105 yards in 8 games), a record that still stands today!


Career Dates:
Alter played as an end at Penn State University from 1937-1939.

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encyclopedia of JEWS in sports by Bernard Postal, Jesse Silver, and Roy Silver (New York: Bloch Publishing Co., 1965)
The YMHA Bulletin, November 26, 1937