Throughout the history of Vandal football the story has been the same. Revenue has been severely limited by capacity and attendance.
Even before the much-maligned Kibbie Dome was constructed Neale Stadium had ceased to function as an adequate stadium for major college opponents. In 1965 Washington State had proposed that all future Vandal-Cougar games be played in Pullman due to Rogers Field superior capacity compared to Neale Stadium. Idaho football coach Steve Musseau countered with the suggestion that Spokane’s Joe Albi Stadium, with its 36,000 seat capacity, would be better than either Pullman or Moscow. The coug’s already regularly played games there and Idaho had a large booster base in the city as well. In fact, the Spokane boosters were happy to have the Vandals play one of two annual spring games in Spokane.
In a season that ended in a Big Sky championship the Vandals were also struck by tragedy. A scholarship athlete from Grangeville died during football practice. While his death was not related to football his teammates were deeply affected.
Idaho recovered from this tragedy and went on to win the Big Sky Conference, defeating rivals Montana and Washington State in the process. The mighty Vandals also routed Montana State 54-0 setting several records in the process. Idaho held the Bobcats to negative yardage and superstar Ray McDonald ran for three touchdowns.
The 1965 game in Boise was against Oregon State (video below). The game ended in a controversial missed field goal. It was controversial because the goal posts in Bronco Stadium weren’t regulation size for college and ultimately cost the Vandals a victory.
The 1965 Battle of the Palouse
and against Oregon State