Elroy Hirsch

Elroy Leon "Crazylegs" Hirsch (June 17, 1923 – January 28, 2004) was an American football player, sport executive and actor. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1967 and the College Football Hall of Fame in 1974. He was also named to the all-time All-Pro team selected in 1968 and to the National Football League (NFL) 1950s All-Decade Team.

A native of Wausau, Wisconsin, Hirsch played college football as a halfback at the University of Wisconsin and the University of Michigan, helping to lead both the 1942 Badgers and the 1943 Wolverines to No. 3 rankings in the final AP Polls. He received the nickname "Crazylegs" (sometimes "Crazy Legs") for his unusual running style.

Hirsch served in the United States Marine Corps from 1944 to 1946 and then played professional football in the All-America Football Conference (AAFC) for the Chicago Rockets from 1946 to 1948 and in the NFL for the Los Angeles Rams from 1949 to 1957. During the 1951 season, Hirsch helped lead the Rams to the NFL championship and tied or broke multiple NFL records with 1,495 receiving yards, an average of 124.6 receiving yards per game (still the third highest season average in NFL history), and 17 touchdown receptions.

Hirsch had a brief career as a motion picture actor in the 1950s and served as the general manager for the Rams from 1960 to 1969 and as the athletic director for the University of Wisconsin from 1969 to 1987.

Elroy Hirsch
refer to caption
1951 Bowman card of Hirsch
No. 40
Position:Halfback, end
Personal information
Born:June 17, 1923
Wausau, Wisconsin
Died:January 28, 2004 (aged 80)
Madison, Wisconsin
Height:6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight:190 lb (86 kg)
Career information
High school:Wausau (WI)
College:Wisconsin, Michigan
NFL Draft:1945 / Round: 1 / Pick: 5
Career history
As player:
As administrator:
Career highlights and awards
Career professional statistics
Receptions:387
Receiving yards:7,029
Receiving touchdowns:60
Player stats at NFL.com
Player stats at PFR

Early years

Hirsch was born in Wausau, Wisconsin in 1923.[1] He was the adopted son of German-Norwegian parents, Otto and Mayme Hirsch.[2] His father was a foreman in an iron works.[2][3]

Hirsch was a star football player at Wausau High School in 1939 and 1940.[4][5] He also played baseball and basketball in high school.[6]

College football

Wisconsin

Hirsch enrolled at the University of Wisconsin in the fall of 1941 and played on the school's freshman football team.[7] As a sophomore, Hirsch starred as a halfback for the 1942 Wisconsin Badgers football team that compiled an 8–1–1 record, defeated reigning national champion Ohio State (17–7), lost only one game to Iowa (0–6), tied with Notre Dame (7–7), and was ranked No. 3 in the final AP Poll.[8][9][10][11] At the end of the season, Hirsch was selected by the Associated Press (AP) as a first-team halfback on the 1942 All-Big Ten Conference football team.[12] In the three years prior to 1942, Wisconsin's football team had gone 8–15–1, and the program had been in decline since 1932.[13] During the 1942 season, Hirsch's only season with the Wisconsin football team, he was a triple-threat man who totaled 767 rushing yards on 141 carries, completed 18 passes for 226 yards, punted four times for an average of 48.8 yards, intercepted six passes, and returned 15 punts for 182 yards.[14] He rushed for a high of 174 yards against Missouri.[14]

The nickname

Hirsch acquired the "Crazylegs" nickname because of his unusual running style in which his legs twisted as he ran. According to one version, after watching Hirsch play in an October 17, 1942, game against the Great Lakes Naval Station, sportswriter Francis J. Powers of Chicago Daily News wrote: "His crazy legs were gyrating in six different directions, all at the same time; he looked like a demented duck."[15] According to another version, he acquired the nickname in high school when fans in Wausau watched "the tall, slim Hirsch" run as "his legs seemed to whirl in several directions."[16]

Hirsch's father later recalled: "We lived two miles from school. Elroy ran to school and back, skipping and crisscrossing his legs in the cement blocks of the sidewalks. He said it would make him shiftier."[16] Hirsch himself recalled: "I've always run kind of funny because my left foot points out to the side and I seem to wobble."[17] He embraced his nickname, saying in interviews, "Anything's better than 'Elroy'."

In the 1970s, Hirsch filed a lawsuit asserting legal ownership of the "Crazylegs" name. He sued S. C. Johnson & Son for its marketing a shaving gel for women's legs under the brand name "Crazylegs". In a 1997 decision, the Wisconsin Supreme Court held that Hirsch's complaint set forth a viable claim for invasion of Hirsch's common law right of privacy.[18]

Michigan

Elroy Hirsch
Hirsch from 1944 Michigan yearbook

In January 1943, Hirsch enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and was transferred to the University of Michigan as part of the V-12 Navy College Training Program.[19] In early September 1943, he broke the record at Michigan's Marine Corps training center, completing a 344-yard obstacle course in one minute and 31 seconds.[20] He was the starting left halfback in the first seven games of the season for Fritz Crisler's 1943 Michigan Wolverines football team that compiled an 8–1 record and was ranked No. 3 in the final AP Poll.[21] After watching Hirsch in pre-season practice, Associated Press football writer Jerry Liska referred to "squirming Elroy Hirsch" as "Wisconsin's gold-plated wartime gift to Michigan."[22] Hirsch and Bill Daley (a V-12 transfer from Minnesota) became Michigan's most powerful offensive weapons during the 1943 season and were dubbed Michigan's "lend-lease backs."[23]

In his first game for Michigan, Hirsch returned the opening kickoff 50 yards, scored two touchdowns and intercepted a pass.[24] He scored five touchdowns in Michigan's first three games and threw for a touchdown in the fourth game against Notre Dame. On October 11, 1943, Hirsch scored three touchdowns, including a 61-yard reverse around the right end, and intercepted a pass to help Michigan to its first victory over Minnesota since 1932.[25][26] Due to a shoulder injury, he appeared only briefly as a backup to kick for extra points in the final two games of the season, but he still led the Wolverines in passing, punt returns, and scoring.[27]

During the 1943–1944 academic year, Hirsch also won varsity letters in basketball (as a center), track (as a broad jumper), and baseball (as a pitcher), becoming the first Michigan athlete to letter in four sports in a single year.[17] He averaged 7.3 points per game for the 1943–44 Michigan Wolverines men's basketball team, compiled a 6-0 record as a pitcher for the Michigan baseball team, placed third in the long jump in the 1944 indoor championship, and led all three teams to Big Ten Conference championships.[27][28] On May 13, 1944, Hirsch starred in two sports in the same day, winning the broad jump with a distance of 24 feet, 2-1/4 inches at a track meet in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and then traveling to Columbus, Ohio, where he pitched a one-hitter to give Michigan's baseball team a 5-0 victory over Ohio State.[29]

Marine Corps

In June 1944, Hirsch and 23 other Michigan athletes were transferred to the Marine Corps Depot at Parris Island.[30] In the fall of 1944, Hirsch was assigned to Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune where he played for the camp's football team.[31] In the spring of 1945, he was stationed at Marine Corps Base Quantico in Virginia.[32] He was promoted to the rank of second lieutenant in May 1945.[33]

Hirsch remained with the Marine Corps in the fall of 1945 and played for the Marine Corps football team at the Marine Corps Air Station El Toro in California.[34] In September 1945, he scored four touchdowns for the El Toro team in a game against the NFL's Los Angeles Bulldogs.[35]

Professional football career

College All-Stars

Hirsch was discharged from the military in May 1946.[36] On August 23, 1946, he led the college all-star team to a 16 to 0 victory over the NFL champion Los Angeles Rams in the Chicago College All-Star Game. Hirsch was named the game's outstanding player, and the Los Angeles Times described his performance in the game as a "one-man show" after he scored the game's only touchdowns, including a 68-yard touchdown sprint, for the college squad.[6][37] Hirsch later described the game as his greatest athletic thrill.[6]

Chicago Rockets

In January 1945, the Cleveland Rams selected Hirsch in the first round (fifth overall pick) of the 1945 NFL Draft.[1] In May, he announced that he would not sign a contract with the Rams, stating that he intended to return to the University of Wisconsin after his discharge from the military.[38]

He ultimately opted not to play in the NFL, instead playing for the Chicago Rockets of the All-America Football Conference (AAFC).[1] Hirsch chose the Rockets because they were coached by Dick Hanley, who had been Hirsch's coach with the El Toro Marines team.[28] Hirsch played three seasons with the Rockets from 1946 to 1948.[1] During those three years, the Rockets compiled a 7–32 record and won only one game in each of the 1947 and 1948 seasons.[39] Hirsch later said the decision to sign with the Rockets was the worst decision he ever made.[28]

In a remarkable display of versatility, Hirsch appeared in all 14 games for the Rockets in 1946, contributing 1,445 yards: 384 kickoff return yards and one touchdown; 347 receiving yards and three receiving touchdowns; 235 punt return yards and one touchdown; 226 rushing yards and one rushing touchdown; 156 passing yards and one passing touchdown; and 97 return yards on six interceptions.[1]

In September 1947, Hirsch caught a 76-yard touchdown pass for an AAFC record.[40] However, injuries limited Hirsch to five games in 1947.[1] He was described in December 1947 as probably "the highest paid waterboy in pro football."[41]

In the fifth game of the 1948 season, Hirsch sustained a fracture on the right side of his skull after being kicked in the head during a game against the Cleveland Browns.[42] Hirsch did not return to action during the 1948 season, totaling 101 receiving yards and 93 rushing yards in five games.[1]

Los Angeles Rams

In June 1949, Hirsch alleged that the Hornets (the Chicago Rockets were renamed the Hornets in 1949) had breached a contractual obligation to pay him a bonus and sought a release to allow him to play for the Green Bay Packers.[43] However, the Los Angeles Rams held Hirsch's NFL rights having selected him in the 1945 NFL Draft, and Hirsch was therefore unable to sign with the Packers. Instead, he signed with the Rams in July 1949.[44] Hirsch earned $20,000 a year from the Rams, following a bidding war with the Hornets. However, after the 1949 season, the AAFC folded, and the Rams reduced his salary with the competition from the AAFC gone. During his career with the Rams, Hirsch never again attained the salary level he was paid as a rookie.[45]

Rams head coach Clark Shaughnessy played Hirsch at the end position.[1] In his first game for the Rams, a 27–24 victory over the Detroit Lions, Hirsch scored two touchdowns, including a 19-yard touchdown reception from Norm Van Brocklin.[46] Over the course of the 1949 season, Hirsch tallied 326 receiving yards, 287 rushing yards, and 55 return yards on two interceptions.[1] During the 1949 season, Hirsch also became one of the first NFL players to wear a plastic helmet.[47] After Hirsch sustained a second head injury (having previously suffered a skull fracture in 1948), Rams coach Shaughnessy had a special, 11-ounce helmet designed for Hirsch, using a strong, light plastic that had been used previously in the construction of fighter planes.[48]

In the opening game of the 1951 season, Norm Van Brocklin passed for an NFL record 554 yards, including 173 yards and four touchdown passes to Hirsch.[49] During the season, Hirsch, Van Brocklin, Bob Waterfield, and Tom Fears (all four of whom have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame) led the Rams to an 8–4 record and a victory over the Cleveland Browns in the 1951 NFL Championship Game.[50] Easily the best year of his career, Hirsch tied or broke multiple NFL receiving records in 1951. These records include:

  • Hirsch set a new NFL record with 1,495 receiving yards. Despite the fact that the NFL season consisted of only 12 games in 1951, Hirsch's single-season receiving record stood for nearly 20 years, until the merger of the AFL and the NFL.[51]
  • Hirsch's average of 124.6 receiving yards per game also set a new NFL record. Through the end of the 2015 NFL season, only two players have exceeded this record.[52]
  • Hirsch also had 17 touchdown receptions in 1951, tying an NFL record set by Don Hutson in 1942. Despite the expansion of the NFL schedule to 16 games, the Hirsch/Hutson mark of 17 touchdown catches lasted until the 1980s, and only four players through the end of the 2015 NFL season have exceeded the mark.[45][53]
  • On his 17 touchdown catches, Hirsch averaged 51.2 yards, including a 91-yard reception that was the longest of the year in the NFL.[54] For this reason, Bob Oates of the Los Angeles Times wrote that, even in the era of Jerry Rice, Hirsch "remains the greatest long-distance receiving threat of all time."[54]
  • Hirsch's 66 receptions also led the NFL in 1951 and was the fifth highest total in NFL history to that date.[55]

After the 1951 season, Hirsch finished second behind Otto Graham in voting conducted by the United Press (UP) for the NFL Player of the Year award.[56] He was also selected as a first-team All-Pro player by both the Associated Press (AP) and the UP. He was also selected to play in the Pro Bowl each year from 1951 to 1953. Hirsch had another strong season in 1953, leading the NFL with a career-high average of 23.6 yards per reception. He also finished second in the NFL with 941 receiving yards in 1953 and was selected as a first-team All-Pro by the AP and a second-team All-Pro by the UP.[1]

Hirsch continued to play for the Rams through the 1957 season.[1] He announced his retirement as a player at age 34 in January 1958.[57] In nine years with the Rams, Hirsch totaled 343 receptions for 6,299 yards and 53 touchdowns. He also gained 317 rushing yards with the Rams.[1]

Television, radio, and movie career

Crazylegs FilmPoster.jpeg
Poster for the 1953 film Crazylegs

After retiring from football, Hirsch accepted a job with Union Oil to replace Bob Richards as the sports director of Union Oil Co.'s 76 Sports Club and the host of its Thursday evening sports television show.[58][59] He also hosted a daily sports commentary show on KNX radio from 1961 to 1967.[60]

During the 1950s, Hirsch also starred in several motion pictures, including the following:

  • Crazylegs, a motion picture released in November 1953 focusing on Hirsch's life as a football player at Wausau High School and the Universities of Wisconsin and Michigan. Hirsch played himself as the lead in the film.[61][62] Los Angeles Times movie critic John L. Scott wrote of Hirsch's performance: "Hirsch as an actor is both likable and believable. He does very well in his first film assignment."[6] Hirsch's appearance in Crazlegs has been credited with expanding his fame beyond sports fans and making him "a star in the eyes of the general public."[63]
  • Unchained, a prison drama released in July 1955 and shot at a correctional facility in Chino, California. Hirsch played the lead as a prisoner in a prison without bars or armed guards. In the film, Hirsch's character planned an escape but changed his mind due to the influence of another prisoner.[64] The film is notable for introducing its theme song, "Unchained Melody" which was sung by Todd Duncan.
  • Zero Hour!, an airline disaster movie released in November 1957. Hirsch played the role of the pilot who became incapacitated (along with the co-pilot and many passengers) after eating tainted fish served as part of the flight's meal service. Zero Hour! was later used as the basis (including much of the original dialogue) for the Zucker brothers' parody film Airplane! (1980).[65][66]

Hirsch also appeared as himself in a 1956 episode of the Captain Midnight television series in a spot advertising Ovaltine milk flavoring.[67] He was also featured in a 1965 episode of The Munsters television show. In his appearance, he is seen on the street discussing the Rams' need for a punter when a football kicked by Herman hits him in the face.[68][69]

Administrative career

Los Angeles Rams

In March 1960, Hirsch signed a three-year contract to serve as the general manager of the Los Angeles Rams; he replaced Pete Rozelle as the Rams' general manager after Rozelle was hired as NFL commissioner.[70] The Rams began the 1960s in the lower tier of the NFL, compiling a losing record each year from 1959 to 1965.[71] As general manager, he was in charge of scouting, the college draft, and negotiating player and coach contracts.[19] During his tenure as general manager, the team drafted numerous talented players, including quarterback Roman Gabriel (first round pick in 1961), Deacon Jones (14th round pick in 1961), and Merlin Olsen (first round pick in 1962), player who helped the Rams improve to 11–1–2 in 1967 and 10–3–1 in 1968.[71] In 1963, after Dan Reeves acquired outright ownership of the Rams, Hirsch's title was changed to assistant to the president. He continued to serve as Reeves' assistant through the 1968 season.[6]

University of Wisconsin

In February 1969, Hirsch was hired away from the Rams to serve as the athletic director at the University of Wisconsin.[72] Within four years, he had raised home attendance at football games from an average of 43,000 to 70,000 per game. During his tenure as athletic director, the number of sports offered by the UW athletics department doubled and the Badgers won national titles in ice hockey, men's and women's crew, and men's and women's cross country.[73] However, the program also had problems with recruiting violations and a fundraising controversy.[74] Hirsch announced his resignation as Wisconsin's athletic director in December 1986;[75] the resignation became effective at the end of June 1987.[74] In July 1987, he was hired to do color commentary on radio broadcasts of Wisconsin football games.[76]

Legacy and honors

During his pro football career, Hirsch had 387 receptions for 7,029 yards and 60 touchdowns.[1] In a film profile of Hirsch produced by the NFL Films, Michael MacCambridge, author of "America's Game", described Hirsch as "the first true flanker deep threat" and stated:

We talk today about yards after the catch, but he would get acres of yards after the catch because he was so elusive in the open field. When the ball was up in the air, he looked like Willie Mays in center field. He could adjust and wind up catching the ball over his shoulder in stride about as well as anyone. If you take a look at the offensive stats in pro football then, he was not just the best in the league, he was head and shoulders above his competitors.[77]

NFL executive Bill Granholm recalled that it was Hirsch's ability to make the overhead or over-the-shoulder catch that set him apart: "He would run down the field with his chin high in the air -- with his head all the way back. Under a long pass, he didn't look left or right as they do today -- he looked up and back at the ball as it came to him over his head. . . . [H]e put his head between the ball and the defensive back. That's how he caught so many bombs."[54]

Hirsch was inducted into both the Pro Football Hall of Fame (inducted 1968) and the College Football Hall of Fame (inducted 1974).[78][79] In September 1969, at the time of the NFL's 50th anniversary, Hirsch was one of 16 players named to the all-time All-Pro team selected by the Pro Football Hall of Fame.[80] He was also named to the NFL's 1950s All-Decade Team (as a flanker) in August 1969.[81] He has also received many other honors, including the following:

  • He was inducted into the Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame in 1964.[82]
  • In January 1983, Hirsch tossed the honorary coin at the start of Super Bowl XVII. He was the third former player to be so honored, following Red Grange and Bobby Layne.[83]
  • Hirsch was inducted into the University of Michigan Athletic Hall of Honor in 1984.[84]
  • In September 1986, Hirsch was selected by Los Angeles fans as a first-team receiver on the Rams' All-Time Team. He received the seventh highest total in the voting.[85]
  • In September 1987, Oakland Avenue, a short street located just south of Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wisconsin, was renamed "Crazylegs Lane" in Hirsch's honor.[86]
  • In November 1987, the University of Wisconsin retired Hirsch's jersey number 40. Hirsch's jersey was only the third to be retired at Wisconsin.[87]
  • In July 1988, Hirsch was inducted into the National High School Sports Hall of Fame based on his accomplishments as a football and basketball player at Wausau High School.[88]
  • In August 1999, Hirsch was ranked number 89 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Football Players.[89]
  • In May 2005, Hirsch was honored with a bronze plaque in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum's "Court of Honor".[90]

Hirsch is also the namesake of the Crazylegs Classic, an annual eight-kilometer running race from the Wisconsin State Capitol to Camp Randall Stadium with proceeds benefiting the University of Wisconsin athletics programs.[91]

Family and later years

Hirsch married his high school sweetheart, Ruth Stahmer (1923-2011), in June 1946.[92][93] They remained married until Hirsch's death 58 years later.[93][94] They had a son, Win Steven (1949-2009), and a daughter, Patricia Caroline (later Patricia Hirsch-Malmquist), born in approximately 1957.[70][95]

Hirsch died of natural causes at an assisted living home in Madison, Wisconsin in January 2004 at age 80.[6][65]

References

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  2. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 20, 2016. Retrieved January 15, 2016.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) "Elroy was born in Wausau on June 17, 1923. His adoptive parents, Otto and Mayme Hirsch were German–Norwegians, his father a worker in a local iron works."
  3. ^ 1930 Census entry for Otto Hirsch and family. Otto, age 42, born in Wisconsin, foreman in iron works. Son Elroy, age six, born in Wisconsin. Census Place: Wausau, Marathon, Wisconsin; Roll: 2582; Page: 15A; Enumeration District: 0066; Image: 959.0; FHL microfilm: 2342316. Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2002.
  4. ^ "Wausau Ace Leads Scorers". The Rhinelander (Wis.) Daily News. October 4, 1939. p. 6 – via Newspapers.com. open access
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  60. ^ "Press Release". University of Wisconsin News and Publication Service. March 15, 1972.
  61. ^ "'Crazylegs,' Story of Hirsch, Rivoli Theater Feature Film". The La Crosse (WI) Sunday Tribune. November 15, 1953. p. 7 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  62. ^ "Crazylegs". Hall Bartlett Productions, Inc. 1953.
  63. ^ "Crazylegs: Hollywood cemented Elroy's fame". Wisconsin Week. July 29, 1987.
  64. ^ "Attempts Escape From Barless Prison". The Salina Journal. July 10, 1955. p. 14 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  65. ^ a b Gloria B. Anderson (January 29, 2004). "Wisconsin loses a legend: Elroy 'Crazylegs' Hirsch, 1923–2004; 'He loved the Badgers'". Green Bay (WI) Press-Gazette. p. C1 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  66. ^ "Out Of Context Cinema: Zero Hour!". WFMU. September 27, 2007.(includes 10 minutes of clips featuring Hirsch)
  67. ^ "Captain Midnight Ovaltine advertisement". Captain Midnight. 1956. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
  68. ^ Stephen Cox, Yvonne DeCarlo, Butch Patrick (2006). The Munsters: A Trip Down Mockingbird Lane. Watson-Guptill Publications. p. 190. ISBN 0823078949.CS1 maint: Uses authors parameter (link)
  69. ^ "Crazy Legs Hirsch On The Munsters". BringBackTheLARams. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
  70. ^ a b Mal Florence (March 23, 1960). "Hirsch Named Ram General Manager". Los Angeles Times. p. IV1 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  71. ^ a b "Cleveland/St. Louis/LA Rams Franchise Encyclopedia". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved October 19, 2016.
  72. ^ "Elroy Hirsch Takes Job As U. of Wisconsin AD". The Sun-Telegram (San Bernardino). March 1, 1969. p. A8 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  73. ^ Ross, J. R. (January 31, 2004). "Elroy 'Crazy Legs' Hirsch; Rams player had running style". The Boston Globe. Retrieved September 25, 2009.
  74. ^ a b "Crazylegs: End of Hirsch reign shows need for more than cheerleading". Green Bay Press-Gazette. June 29, 1987. p. A8 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  75. ^ "Crazy Legs Hirsch to step down". The New Mexican (Santa Fe). December 27, 1986. p. B2 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  76. ^ "Hirsch will do UW football color". Green Bay Press-Gazette. July 8, 1997. p. C6 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  77. ^ "#87: Elroy "Crazy legs" Hirsch: The Top 100 NFL's Greatest Players". NFL Films. 2010. Retrieved October 20, 2016.
  78. ^ "Elroy Hirsch Named to NFL Hall of Fame". Los Angeles Times. February 20, 1968. p. 3 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  79. ^ "Elroy Hirsch Piked To Grid Hall of Fame". La Crosse (WI) Tribune. April 12, 1974. p. 8 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  80. ^ "Night Train Lane Picked On Pros' All-Time Team". Detroit Free Press. September 7, 1969. p. 3E – via Newspapers.com. open access
  81. ^ "Graham, Huff on All-1950s Pro Football Selections". Racine Sunday Bulletin. August 31, 1969. p. 6C – via Newspapers.com. open access
  82. ^ "Elroy Hirsch Gains State Hall of Fame". The Daily Telegram (Eau-Claire, WI). November 28, 1964. p. 12 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  83. ^ "Lists". Democrat and Chronicle. January 24, 1992. p. 2D – via Newspapers.com. open access
  84. ^ "Michigan Athletic Hall of Honor". University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library. Retrieved October 19, 2016.
  85. ^ "Rams' All-Time Team". Los Angeles Times. September 17, 1986. p. IIID – via Newspapers.com. open access
  86. ^ "The Street of Broken Tackles". Chicago Tribune. September 11, 1987.
  87. ^ "Press Release: Hirsch's No. 40 Retired". University of Wisconsin Sports News Service. November 21, 1987.
  88. ^ "Football dominates Hall of Fame pick". Battle Creek (MI) Enquirer. July 9, 1988. p. 3C – via Newspapers.com. open access
  89. ^ "untitled". Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY). August 15, 1999. p. 3D – via Newspapers.com. open access
  90. ^ "A Great Player, but a Better Nickname". Los Angeles Times. May 20, 2005. p. D2 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  91. ^ "Race Information". Crazylegs Classic. Retrieved October 19, 2016.
  92. ^ "North Side Relatives ... Where's Bliss ..." Green Bay Press-Gazette. June 28, 1946. p. 11 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  93. ^ a b "Ruth Hirsch Obituary". Wausau Daily Herald. August 6, 2011.
  94. ^ Karen Walsh (July 29, 1987). "Ruth and Elroy: A good 41 year". Wisconsin Week.
  95. ^ "Badgers have faithful fan in Mrs. Elroy Hirsch". The Daily Tribune, Wisconsin Rapids (AP story). August 26, 1969. p. 7 – via Newspapers.com. open access

External links

Records
Preceded by
Don Hutson
NFL single-season receiving record
1951–1961
Succeeded by
Charlie Hennigan
1942 All-Big Ten Conference football team

The 1942 All-Big Ten Conference football team consists of American football players selected to the All-Big Ten Conference teams selected by the Associated Press (AP) and United Press (UP) for the 1942 Big Ten Conference football season. Dave Schreiner was the only unanimous pick with 18 points (representing all nine first-team picks); Julius Franks and Dick Wildung followed with 17 points each.

1942 Ohio State Buckeyes football team

The 1942 Ohio State Buckeyes football team represented Ohio State University in the 1942 Big Ten Conference football season. The team was led by wingback Les Horvath and quarterback and team captain George Lynn. They were coached by Paul Brown. The Buckeyes were awarded the national championship by the Associated Press, the first claimed and generally recognized national title in program history. The 1933 Ohio State team had been awarded a national championship via the Dunkel System, with Michigan, Princeton, and USC also receiving titles from different ranking systems.

The Buckeyes only loss was to the Wisconsin Badgers in what many now refer to as the "Bad Water Game", where half of the Buckeye players contracted an intestinal disorder after drinking from an unsanitary drinking fountain on the train to Madison. The Buckeyes were defeated by the Badgers who were led by Elroy Hirsch. However, the Badgers had a loss and a tie giving Ohio State the Big Ten championship.

Horvath then led the Buckeyes to three scores through the air to upset Michigan and win their first league championship in three years and their sixth in 30 years since joining the Big Ten Conference in 1913. The Buckeyes outscored their opponents on the season by an average score of 34–11 by scoring a total 337 and allowing 114.

1942 Wisconsin Badgers football team

The 1942 Wisconsin Badgers football team was an American football team that represented the University of Wisconsin in the 1942 Big Ten Conference football season. The team compiled an 8–1–1 record (4–1 against conference opponents), finished in second place in the Big Ten Conference, led the conference in scoring defense (6.8 points allowed per game), and was ranked No. 3 in the final AP Poll. Harry Stuhldreher was in his seventh year as Wisconsin's head coach.The Helms Athletic Foundation selected Wisconsin as the 1942 national champion, giving the program its only national championship. Ohio State, a team that Wisconsin defeated, was selected as national champion in the AP Poll.The team played its home games at Camp Randall Stadium. During the 1942 season, the average attendance at home games was 29,026.

1943 All-Big Nine Conference football team

The 1943 All-Big Nine Conference football team consists of American football players selected to the All-Big Nine Conference teams selected by the Associated Press (AP) and United Press (UP) for the 1943 Big Ten Conference football season.

1943 Michigan Wolverines football team

The 1943 Michigan Wolverines football team represented the University of Michigan in the 1943 Big Ten Conference football season. Fritz Crisler, in his sixth year as head coach, led the team to an 8–1 record and a tie with Purdue for the Western Conference championship. The team was ranked #3 in the final AP Poll behind Notre Dame and the Iowa Pre-Flight School. Michigan outscored its opponents 302 to 73 in nine games. The team's total of 302 points (33.5 points per game) was the highest point total for a Michigan team since the 1917 team scored 304 points in 10 games (30.4 points per game). Defensively, the team held every opponent, except Notre Dame, to seven or fewer points.

After opening the season with three consecutive victories, the Wolverines lost to Notre Dame by a 35–12 score in game matching teams ranked #1 and #2 in the AP Poll. In the fifth game of the season, the team responded with a 49-6 victory over a Minnesota team ranked #11 by the AP. The game marked the worst defeat to that time in the history of the Minnesota football program and Michigan's first victory over the Golden Gophers since 1932. The Wolverines finished the season with a 45–7 victory over Ohio State—the largest margin of victory in the Michigan–Ohio State football rivalry since Michigan's 86–0 victory in 1902.

At the end of the season, several Michigan players received individual honors. Despite missing the last three games of the season due to military service, fullback Bill Daley finished seventh in the voting for the Heisman Trophy and was selected as consensus All-American. Daley led the team in both rushing and scoring, totaling 817 rushing yards and 59 points in six games. Daley gained 216 of his rushing yards in Michigan's 21–7 over Northwestern.

Bob Wiese, who played at quarterback and fullback, was selected by his teammates as the most valuable player on the 1943 team and finished in a tie for second in voting for the Chicago Tribune Silver Football trophy presented to the most valuable player in the Western Conference. Right tackle Merv Pregulman was also selected as a first-team All-American by Collier's Weekly and Stars & Stripes. center Fred Negus was also selected as a first-team All-Western Conference player.

1943 Minnesota Golden Gophers football team

The 1943 Minnesota Golden Gophers football team represented the University of Minnesota in the 1943 Big Ten Conference football season. In their second year under head coach George Hauser, the Golden Gophers compiled a 5–4 record but were outscored by their opponents by a combined total of 184 to 170.Fullback Bill Daley and end Herb Hein were named All-Americans by the Associated Press. Daley was also named an All-American by Collier's/Grantland Rice. Tackle Paul Mitchell was named All-Big Ten first team.Paul Mitchell was awarded the Team MVP Award.Total attendance for the season was 182,779, which averaged to 26,111. The season high for attendance was against Purdue.

1943–44 Michigan Wolverines men's basketball team

The 1943–44 Michigan Wolverines men's basketball team represented the University of Michigan in intercollegiate basketball during the 1943–44 season. In their sixth year under head coach Bennie Oosterbaan, the Wolverines finished the season in a tie for sixth place in the Big Ten Conference with an overall record of 12–7 and 5–7 against conference opponents.

After team captain Ralph Gilbert was inducted into the military, junior guard/forward Dave Strack from Indianapolis was the team's acting captain and led the team in scoring with 194 points. Sophomore forward Thomas "Little Tommy" King scored 172 points and was selected as the team's Most Valuable Player. Center Elroy "Crazy Legs" Hirsch was the team's third highest scorer and became the first University of Michigan athlete to receive varsity letters in four sports (football, basketball, track and field and baseball) during the same academic year.

1951 All-Pro Team

The 1951 All-Pro Team consisted of American football players chosen by various selectors for the All-Pro team of the National Football League (NFL) for the 1951 NFL season. Teams were selected by, among others, the Associated Press (AP) (chosen in a national poll of AP football writers), the United Press (UP) (selected by UP sports writers), and the New York Daily News.The All-Pro selections were dominated by players from the Cleveland Browns (nine first-team honorees including Otto Graham and Lou Groza), New York Giants (seven honorees including Emlen Tunnell), Los Angeles Rams (six first-team honorees including Elroy Hirsch), and Detroit Lions (four first-team honorees including Doak Walker).

This was the first year that separate defensive and offensive teams were selected as up until this point most players had played both ways for much of the game (although this had decreased in the later 1940s), so a quarterback/tailback/ halfback on offense usually just became a defensive back similar to today's safety when playing defense while the fullback, usually a larger player, or a larger halfback (and before the T-formation, the quarterback, who was usually actually a blocking back on offence), would play a position similar to linebacker. Ends would also usually convert to defensive backs, similar to corner backs of today.

1953 All-Pro Team

The 1953 All-Pro Team consisted of American football players chosen by various selectors for the All-Pro team of the National Football League (NFL) for the 1953 NFL season. Teams were selected by, among others, the Associated Press (AP) (based on voting among 48 member paper sports writers and AP staffers), the United Press (UP), and the New York Daily News.

1957 Los Angeles Rams season

The 1957 Los Angeles Rams season was the team's 20th year with the National Football League and the 12th season in Los Angeles.

Fred Negus

Frederick Wilson Negus (November 7, 1923 – April 18, 2005) was an American football player. He played college football for Wisconsin and Michigan and professional football in the All-America Football Conference and the National Football League.

Hirsch

Hirsch ('deer' in German and Yiddish) may refer to:

PlacesHirsch Observatory, an astronomical observatory in Troy, New YorkPeopleAfua Hirsch (b. 1981), British writer

Alex Hirsch, animator, screenwriter and voice actor

August Hirsch (1817–1894), German physician and medical historian.

Corey Hirsch, Canadian ice hockey goaltender

David Philip Hirsch, British Army officer

David Hirsch (rabbi) American

Edward Hirsch, American poet and academic

E. D. Hirsch, American educator and literary critic.

Elroy Hirsch, American football player

Emanuel Hirsch, Protestant theologian

Emil G. Hirsch, American rabbi

Emile Hirsch, American actor

Felix Hirsch, German-American journalist and historian

George A. Hirsch, American magazine publisher

Helmut Hirsch, (1916–1937), German Jew and victim of the Nazis

Jack Hirsch, college basketball player and assistant coach

Joe Hirsch (b. 1941), American horse racing columnist

John Hirsch, Hungarian-Canadian theater director

Jorge E. Hirsch (b. 1953), Professor of Physics at UCSD

Judd Hirsch, American actor

Julius Hirsch, German footballer

Kurt Hirsch, German mathematician

Lou Hirsch, American actor

Maurice Hirsch (footballer) (born 1993), German footballer

Maurice de Hirsch, Baron, German-Jewish businessman and philanthropist

Max Hirsch, German political economist

Moshe Hirsch, Israeli politician

Moshe Hillel Hirsch American/Israeli rabbi

Paul Hirsch (politician), German politician

Paul Hirsch (film editor), American film editor

Peter Hirsch, German born British physicist

Peter Hirsch (microbiologist), German microbiologist

Peter Hirsch (ice hockey), Danish ice hockey player

Richard Hirsch (born 1944), American abstract ceramic sculptor

Samson Raphael Hirsch, German rabbi

Samuel Hirsch, German rabbi

Slavko Hirsch, Croatian physician

Robert L. Hirsch, energy research scientist

Sidney Mttron Hirsch (1883–1962), American model and playwright.

Stefan Hirsch (1899–1964), American artist

Steven Hirsch, co-chairman of Vivid Entertainment

Tomás Hirsch, Chilean politician and businessman

Werner Z. Hirsch (1920–2009), German-born American economist.

Edward Hirsch Levi, Politician US Attorney GeneralOther

Baron de Hirsch Cemetery (disambiguation), cemeteries named after Moritz Hirsch

Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational Stakes, named after Joe Hirsch

Hirsch conjecture, a disproved statement in mathematics, concerning polytopes

Hirsch-index (or h-index), named after Jorge E. Hirsch, a number used to measure the impact of scientists

List of National Football League annual receiving yards leaders

In American football, passing, along with running (also referred to as rushing), is one of the two main methods of advancing the ball down the field. Passes are typically attempted by the quarterback, but any offensive player can attempt a pass provided they are behind the line of scrimmage. To qualify as a passing play, the ball must have initially moved forward after leaving the hands of the passer; if the ball initially moved laterally or backwards, the play would instead be considered a running play. A player who catches a forward pass is a receiver, and the number of receiving yards each player has recorded in each season is a recorded stat in football games. In addition to the overall National Football League (NFL) receiving champion, league record books recognize statistics from the American Football League (AFL), which operated from 1960 to 1969 before being absorbed into the NFL in 1970, Although league record books do not recognize stats from the All-America Football Conference, another league that merged with the NFL, these statistics are recognized by the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The NFL did not begin keeping official records until the 1932 season. The average the yards the leader has gained has increased over time – since the adoption of the 14-game season in 1961, all but one season saw the receiving leader record over 1,000 yards. No player has ever finished with over 2,000 receiving yards in a season; the current record is 1,964 yards, set by Calvin Johnson during the 2012 season. Wes Chandler, who led the league with 1,032 yards in the strike-shortened 1982 season, averaged 129 yards receiving per game, an NFL record.Don Hutson led the league in receiving yards seven times, the most of any player; Jerry Rice is second with six. Hutson also recorded the most consecutive seasons leading the league in receiving, doing so for five seasons from 1941 to 1945, while Jerry Rice ranks second with three consecutive league-leading seasons from 1993 to 1995. A Green Bay Packers player has led the league in receiving yards eleven times, the most in the NFL; the Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams rank second with nine league-leading seasons. The most recent receiving yards leader was Julio Jones of the Atlanta Falcons, who recorded 1,677 receiving yards over the 2018 season.

List of Wisconsin Badgers in the NFL Draft

The University of Wisconsin–Madison Badgers have drafted 294 players into the National Football League (NFL) since the league began holding drafts in 1936. The Badgers' highest draft position was second overall in 1944, when Pat Harder was selected by Card-Pitt. Wisconsin's first drafted player in the NFL was Eddie Jankowski, who was the 9th overall pick by the Green Bay Packers in 1937. Five former Badgers were selected from the latest NFL draft: Nick Nelson, Troy Fumagalli, Natrell Jamerson, Jack Cichy and Leon Jacobs.

Each NFL franchise seeks to add new players through the annual NFL Draft. The team with the worst record the previous year picks first, the next-worst team second, and so on. Teams that did not make the playoffs are ordered by their regular-season record, with any remaining ties broken by strength of schedule. Playoff participants are sequenced after non-playoff teams, based on their round of elimination (wild card, division, conference, and Super Bowl).Before the AFL–NFL merger agreements in 1966, the American Football League (AFL) operated in direct competition with the NFL and held a separate draft. This led to a massive bidding war over top prospects between the two leagues. As part of the merger agreement on June 8, 1966, the two leagues would hold a multiple round "Common Draft". Once the AFL officially merged with the NFL in 1970, the "Common Draft" simply became the NFL Draft. This list includes players that have transferred to or from Wisconsin.

Tom Dahms

Thomas Gordon Dahms (April 19, 1927 – November 30, 1988) was an American football player and coach. He played in the National Football League (NFL) as an offensive tackle for seven seasons with the Los Angeles Rams, Green Bay Packers, Chicago Cardinals, and San Francisco 49ers. After his playing career, he served as assistant coach in the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys and the Oakland Raiders. He played college football at San Diego State College.

Unchained (film)

Unchained is a 1955 prison film directed by Hall Bartlett and starring Elroy Hirsch, Barbara Hale, Chester Morris, Todd Duncan, and Johnny Johnston. Based on the non-fiction book Prisoners are People by Kenyon J. Scudder, it is most remembered for its theme song, "Unchained Melody".

Win Brockmeyer

Win Brockmeyer (September 16, 1907 – March 14, 1980) was an American football coach from Wausau, Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Badgers football

The Wisconsin Badgers football team is a division I college football program. The Badgers have competed in the Big Ten Conference since its formation in 1896. They play their home games at Camp Randall Stadium, the fourth-oldest stadium in college football. Wisconsin is one of 26 College football programs to win 700 or more games. Wisconsin has had two Heisman Trophy winners, Alan Ameche and Ron Dayne, and have had Eleven former players inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. As of December 27, 2018, the Badgers have an all-time record of 705–495–53.

First-team Offense
First-team Defense
First-team Special Teams
Second-team Offense
Second-team Defense
Second-team Special Teams
Quarterbacks
Running backs
Wide receivers /
ends
Tight ends
Offensive
linemen
Pre-modern era
two-way players
Defensive
linemen
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Defensive backs
Placekickers
and punters
Coaches
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