The 1940 season marked veteran Vandal coach Ted Bank’s final effort with the Vandals. Idaho struggled to a 1-7-1 record in 1940 in coach Bank’s final season. The coach ended his Vandal career with a below average winning percentage of 36%.
Idaho was absolutely abysmal in 1940. The team failed to score a single point in its firs7 games. The team lost to all of its traditional rivals – Washington State, Montana, and Utah. Prior to the season ending game against the team from Utah, the Utah-Idaho series was tied up at 4 games apiece and one tie. The Vandals even lost to Gonzaga in Moscow. The only victory came via a score of 6-0 over Nevada. Proof of just how major a rivalry the Utah game was in those days can be seen in the enormous headline and illustration (featuring Grumpy Joe Vandal) in the Deseret News. Another rivalry, sadly ended for Idaho.
1940 also marked the third year of the battle for the Little Brown Stein. Although this year would mark the 20th installment of the annual battle, the trophy had only been introduced two years prior.
The biggest sporting accomplishment of the year, and possibly in school history, was the claiming by Idaho of national championship in Boxing.