George Cafego

George Cafego (August 29, 1915 – February 9, 1998) was an American football player and coach of football and baseball. He played college football at the University of Tennessee and professionally in the National Football League (NFL) with the Brooklyn Dodgers, Washington Redskins, Boston Yanks. He served as the head baseball coach at the University of Wyoming in 1950 and at his alma mater, Tennessee, from 1958 to 1962. Cafego was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a player in 1969.

George Cafego
George Cafego
No. 72, 32
Position:Fullback, quarterback, halfback
Personal information
Born:August 29, 1915
Whipple, West Virginia
Died:February 9, 1998 (aged 82)
Knoxville, Tennessee
Career information
High school:Oak Hill
(Oak Hill, West Virginia)
NFL Draft:1940 / Round: 1 / Pick: 1
Career history
As player:
As coach:
Career NFL statistics
Passer rating:37.7
Player stats at

High school and collegiate career

Born in rural Whipple, West Virginia, Cafego attended Oak Hill High School in nearby Oak Hill. He went to the University of Tennessee as a halfback under coach Robert Neyland. While there, he compiled 2,139 total yards and two All-American team selections. He was also a finalist for the Heisman Memorial Trophy. In addition to running and passing the ball, Cafego also served as punter and kickoff returner, excelling at both. At Tennessee his nickname was "Bad News".[1] As a sophomore, his first year on the varsity, he already showed signs of success, catching "many an expert eye."[2]

Professional career

Cafego was drafted as the number one overall pick in 1940 NFL draft by the Chicago Cardinals. He eventually played for the Brooklyn Dodgers. After playing one season, his career was interrupted by a brief stint of Army service in World War II era. During this time he appeared in several games for the Newport News Builders of the Dixie League. Returning to the Dodgers in 1943, he was traded to the Washington Redskins after five unspectacular games. For the 1944 and 1945 seasons, Cafego played for the Boston Yanks before retiring.

Coaching career

After his playing career was over, Cafego served as an assistant coach at Wyoming, Furman, Arkansas, and 30 years at his alma mater, Tennessee, serving under a total of six different head coaches during his UT coaching career. He was also the head coach of Tennessee Volunteers baseball from 1958 to 1962. He retired from coaching following the 1984 season.


Cafego died in Knoxville, Tennessee at the age of 82 and was buried in Fayette County, West Virginia.


  1. ^ "LIFE Goes to a Football Game to Watch Tennessee Trounce Alabama". LIFE: 102. November 6, 1939.
  2. ^ "All-American Team Selected". Washington C. H. Record-Herald. December 4, 1937. p. 9. Retrieved May 28, 2015 – via open access

External links

1937 All-SEC football team

The 1937 All-SEC football team consists of American football players selected to the All-Southeastern Conference (SEC) chosen by various selectors for the 1937 college football season. Alabama won the conference.

1938 All-SEC football team

The 1938 All-SEC football team consists of American football players selected to the All-Southeastern Conference (SEC) chosen by various selectors for the 1938 college football season. Tennessee won the conference.

1938 Tennessee Volunteers football team

The 1938 Tennessee Volunteers football team represented the University of Tennessee in the 1938 season. Head coach Robert Neyland fielded his third team at Tennessee after returning from active duty in the United States Army. The 1938 Tennessee Volunteers won the school's first national championship and are regarded as one of the greatest teams in SEC and NCAA history. The team was named national champion by NCAA-designated major selectors of Berryman, Billingsley, Boand, Dunkel, College Football Researchers Association, Houlgate, Litkenhous, Poling, Sagarin, Sagarin (ELO-Chess)In 1938, The Vols went 10–0 in the regular season and then shut out fellow unbeaten Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl, 17–0, snapping the Sooners' 14-game win streak and beginning a long winning streak for Neyland. Tennessee was selected by a majority of polls and selectors as the national champions with 24 crowning the Vols. Heisman Trophy winner Davey O'Brien and his undefeated TCU Horned Frogs were second with 14.

The 1938 Volunteers were the first of three consecutive Tennessee squads that had undefeated regular seasons. Tennessee won three consecutive conference titles before Neyland left for military service in World War II in 1941. Tennessee also began a historic streak in 1938. By shutting out their last four regular season opponents, the Vols began a streak of 17 consecutive regular season shutouts and 71 consecutive shutout quarters, still NCAA records. Athlon Sports has named the 1938 UT team as the third best college football team of all time.

1939 All-SEC football team

The 1939 All-SEC football team consists of American football players selected to the All-Southeastern Conference (SEC) chosen by various selectors for the 1939 college football season. Tennessee won the conference.

1939 College Football All-America Team

The 1939 College Football All-America team is composed of college football players who were selected as All-Americans by various organizations and writers that chose College Football All-America Teams in 1939. The nine selectors recognized by the NCAA as "official" for the 1939 season are (1) Collier's Weekly, as selected by Grantland Rice, (2) the Associated Press, (3) the United Press, (4) the All-America Board, (5) the International News Service (INS), (6) Liberty magazine, (7) the Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA), (8) Newsweek, and (9) the Sporting News.

Two players, USC guard Harry Smith and Cornell tackle Nick Drahos were unanimously chosen by all nine official selectors. Two other players, Iowa halfback Nile Kinnick and Michigan halfback Tom Harmon were selected as first-team All-Americans by eight of the nine official selectors, with Kinnick winning the Heisman Trophy in 1939 and Harmon winning it in 1940.

1939 Tennessee Volunteers football team

The 1939 Tennessee Volunteers represented the University of Tennessee in the 1939 season. Playing as a member of the Southeastern Conference (SEC), the team was led by head coach Robert Neyland, in his thirteenth year, and played their home games at Shields–Watkins Field in Knoxville, Tennessee. They finished the season with a record of ten wins and one loss (10–1 overall, 6–0 in the SEC), as SEC Champions and with a loss against USC in the 1940 Rose Bowl.

Tennessee entered the season as defending national champions and coach Neyland led the team to their second of three consecutive undefeated regular seasons. The 1939 Vols were also the last team in NCAA history to go undefeated, untied, and unscored upon in the regular season. Tennessee had two All-American performers that year: George Cafego, a single-wing halfback, and Ed Molinski, a guard.

1940 NFL season

The 1940 NFL season was the 21st regular season of the National Football League. The season ended when the Chicago Bears defeated the Washington Redskins in the NFL Championship Game, 73–0. This game still stands as the most one-sided victory in NFL history. The Pittsburgh Pirates were renamed the Pittsburgh Steelers before the 1940 season.

Bill Bearley

William L. Bearley (November 20, 1902 – August 14, 1999) was an American football, baseball, and tennis coach. He was the 11th head football coach at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas and he held that position for the 1942 season. His record at Fort Hays was 1–8.

Everett Shelton

Everett F. Shelton (May 12, 1898 – April 16, 1974) was an American basketball coach in the 1940s and 1950s. Shelton played quarterback for the Phillips University football team. The Cunningham, Kansas native coached 46 years at the high school, college and Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) levels and compiled an 850–437 record. He is mostly known for coaching the Wyoming Cowboys men's basketball team from 1939 to 1959. While at Wyoming, Shelton had a record of 328 wins and 201 losses for a .620 winning percentage. He guided the Cowboys to eight Mountain States / Skyline Conference championships and seven NCAA Tournament appearances. During his career, he was President of the National Association of Basketball Coaches. He was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1980.

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John F. McBride (born November 30, 1901, date of death unknown) was an American football player who played the positions of halfback, fullback, and quarterback in the National Football League (NFL). He was born in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania. McBride played collegiately at Syracuse University where he finished second in the nation in scoring in his senior year to Heinie Benkert. McBride scored 90 points on 7 touchdowns, 11 field goals, and 15 extra points in his senior year.

McBride played 10 seasons in the NFL, leading the Giants in scoring in each of their first three seasons (1925–27), and the NFL in scoring in 1927. As a passer, McBride ended his career with 3,123 yards passing, 31 touchdown passes, and 57 interceptions. As a rusher McBride totalled 2,093 yards rushing, and 26 rushing touchdowns, while averaging 4.2 yards a carry.McBride maintained his connection with pro football after his career in the NFL serving as the player/coach of the Paterson Panthers (later of the American Association) in 1935 and as coach of the New York Yankees of the second American Football League and the New York Yankees of the third AFL in 1940-1941.

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Depree married Fannie Wilson of Knoxville, Tennessee, who bore his three sons. He was born in Holland, Michigan in 1879 and died in Sarasota, Florida in 1972.

DePree was a letterman in football from the University of Michigan, where played fullback.

List of Arizona Cardinals first-round draft picks

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Wyoming Cowboys baseball

The Wyoming Cowboys baseball team was a varsity intercollegiate athletic team of the University of Wyoming in Laramie, Wyoming, United States. The team played in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division I level as a member of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) from 1962 until 1996. The Cowboys made their only appearance in the College World Series in 1956, and that Cowboys team was inducted into the University of Wyoming Hall of Fame in 2006.

George Cafego—awards and honors

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