When Roger Maris broke Babe Ruth's major league
record by belting 61 home runs in 1961, historians
decided an asterisk was appropriate for the new
Maris played in a 162-game season instead of the
143-game format when Ruth set his record for the same
New York Yankees team in 1927.
The asterisk was later removed by Major League
Now, a long-accepted high school football record
credited to Maris needs not only an asterisk but a new
catetory, as well.
Maris has been listed over the last 30 years in
various reports with returning four kickoffs for
touchdowns for Shanley High of Fargo, N.D., in a 33-20
win over Devils Lake High on Sept. 28, 1951.
The reported feat intrigued Bob Fulton, a sports
writer from Indiana, Pa., who decided to research the
'record' for a possible story.
While in Fargo to cover a college football game for
his newspaper, he visited the local Fargo Forum paper
to check out the Maris mark on newspaper microfilm.
What he discovered was that Maris did score four
touchdowns on returns in that game...but only two were
on kickoff returns of 88 and 90 yards.
Maris also scored on a 45-yard punt return and a
25-yard pass interception return and added a fifth
score on a 32-yard run from scrimmage.
For three decades, the feat of four touchdowns on
returns has been misconstrued as four kickoff return
With the effort finally clarified by Fulton, now the
search is on for a record listing for the most kickoff
touchdown returns in a game.
There is documentation that Brent Fullwood of St.
Clud, Fla., returned three for scores in a 47-28 win
against Leesburg, Fla., in 1982. The returns covered
94, 91 and 84 yards.
Any other nominations?