Out of fear the Japanese would bomb Pasadena, the Rose Bowl was played in Durham on this day in 1942.
From a thorough and nicely illustrated account “The Durham Rose Bowl, 1942” by Duke University archivist William E. King:
“Borrowed bleachers from the University of North Carolina and N.C. State boosted stadium capacity from 35,000 to 55,000 spectators. A flood of East Coast sportswriters descended upon Durham for their first Rose Bowl, while only a single writer came from southern California….
“[Oregon State] upset previously undefeated Duke [20-16]. The heavily favored Duke team lost on a cold, rainy day to an underestimated defensive team that successfully protected an early lead. Coach Wade later stated he spent too much time being host and too little time preparing the team. He also gave the team several days off to go home for Christmas. Nevertheless, the university community and nation had more important concerns to face beginning January 2, 1942.”