The following was taken from an article written in the Sydney Mail in April, 1888. It briefly describes the Sydney University Australian Football Club which unfortunately, only survived for two seasons.
The University only had a limited number of students at the time but increased significantly after John Henry Challis bequeathed a sum of £200,000 in 1889 and seven new professorships were created.
Be that as it may, the 1888 annual meeting of the University Football Club, playing under Australian rules, was held on Monday night, 16 April 1888 at Miithorp’s Hotel. (Milthorp’s Hotel was on the corner of York and King Streets, Sydney) Mr. F. Challands occupied the chair.
Quoting from the annual report which stated “that the club was only formed on July 7, 1887, late last year, when other clubs were closing the season.
The club could not claim to have done much more than make a start. Three matches were played, but, as the number of members was small, it had to depend in a degree on tho assistance given by the Sydney, East Sydney, Waratah and West Sydney clubs. Members should go into regular practice in order that they might be prepared to accept an invitation from tho Melbourne University this season.”
A further report on the meeting continued: “The balance sheet was of a satisfactory nature. The report and balance-sheet were adopted. Letters were received from his Excellency the Governor and Dr. Brownless according their patronage to the club. Tho following office-bearers were elected : Patron, his Excellency the Governor; president, the Chancellor (Sir William Manning) ; vice-presidents, Dr. Maclaurin and Dr. Brownless ; hon. secretary, Mr. M. M. Ryan; assistant hon. secretary, Mr. H. Davis; hon. treasurer, Mr. F. E. Wood: committee, Messrs. R. Kidston, W.J.W. Richardson, Cock, Waters, and T. Challands ; auditors, Messrs. J. P. Leahy and Fitzsimons; delegate to . the association, Mr. W. J. W. Richardson. ”
Ref. Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser (NSW : 1871 – 1912), Saturday 21 April 1888, page 865