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In 1892, a quarterback named Paul D. Hubbard invented a way to communicate privately with his teammates at Gallaudet University, a school for deaf and hard of hearing students. Worried that opposing teams could steal Gallaudet’s plays because they were communicating through American Sign Language (ASL), Hubbard proposed they gather together in a tight circle to strategize.
That formation became known as the huddle, and it is now a fixture of football at all levels, from high school to the NFL.