|Born:||April 3, 1922|
|Died:||May 19, 1996|
Cape Coral, Florida
|College||University of Michigan|
Tom George Kuzma (April 3, 1922 – May 19, 1996) was an American football player for the University of Michigan. He was the starting left halfback for Fritz Crisler's Michigan teams in 1941 and 1942.
Kuzma was a native of Gary, Indiana. He attended Emerson High School in Gary, where he was an all-state fullback and starred in three sports—football, basketball and track.Football Hall of Famer Tom Harmon also hailed from Gary. Harmon graduated in 1937 and enrolled at the University of Michigan. Kuzma graduated two years later and followed Harmon to Michigan. Kuzma was six-feet, three-inches tall, and weighed 195 pounds as a player at Michigan.
Kuzma followed Harmon as Michigan's principal running back in 1941, and comparisons to Harmon were inevitable. Kuzma lacked Harmon's blazing speed and was instead a power-runner who ran through and over the opposition. As NEA Sports Editor Harry Grayson put it, "He's a smacker from Smackersville."Aside from his ability as a power runner, Kuzma was a good passer, solid defender, and also served as the Wolverines punter and punt returner. He was considered the Wolverines' best punter since Harry Kipke played for Michigan 20 years earlier. In a 1941 game against Northwestern, Kuzma punted the ball 53 yards with the ball going out of bounds at the Northwestern four-yard line; Crisler called the kick "miraculous." In the same game, he threw two touchdown passes, including a 46-yard pass in the fourth quarter that proved to be the game winner as Michigan edged Northwestern, 14–7.
In his first four games as a starter in 1941, Kuzma scored five touchdowns and passed for two more.By mid-season, the Associated Press ran a feature story on Kuzma, reporting that "this 19-year-old gridder had surpassed Harmon's sophomore record in scoring, had neared his first-year passing mark and had become one of the Western Conference's greatest kickers." Kuzma had a solid sophomore year, rushing for an average of 4.3 yards per carry and finishing second in the Big Ten Conference in total offense yards per game.
Kuzma attended the school of business administration at Michigan and was a member of Phi Gamma Delta.
Kuzma was inducted into the military in 1943 and subsequently drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the third round of the 1944 NFL draft.After World War II, Kuzma returned to the University of Michigan to complete his degree, but he did not return to the football team. He graduated in 1947 and chose not to play football professionally but rather served as an assistant football coach at the University of Colorado from 1947–48. In 1949, Kuzma returned to Michigan and went into the steel business in Detroit. He remained in the steel business until 1979. He next co-founded a chemical coatings company where he worked until his retirement in 1987. He also served as president of the University of Michigan's "M" Club.
Kuzma died at age 74 in Cape Coral, Florida.
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The 1948 Michigan Wolverines football team represented the University of Michigan during the 1948 Big Nine Conference football season. In its first year under head coach Bennie Oosterbaan, Michigan compiled a 9–0 record, defeated six ranked opponents by a combined score of 122–17, and won both the Big Nine Conference and national football championships. In the final AP Poll, Michigan received 192 first place votes, twice as many as second-place Notre Dame which garnered 97 first place votes.
The 1947 Michigan Wolverines football team represented the University of Michigan in the 1947 Big Nine Conference football season. In its tenth year under head coach Fritz Crisler, Michigan compiled a perfect 10–0 record, won the Big Ten Conference championship, and defeated the USC Trojans by a score of 49–0 in the 1948 Rose Bowl game. Although ranked second in the AP Poll at the end of the regular season, the Wolverines were selected as the nation's No. 1 team by a 226–119 margin over Notre Dame in an unprecedented AP Poll taken after the bowl games. The 1947 team outscored its opponents, 394–53, and has been selected as the best team in the history of Michigan football.
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George Frank Ceithaml was an American football quarterback and coach. He was the starting quarterback for Fritz Crisler's University of Michigan football teams in 1941 and 1942. Crisler later called Ceithaml "the smartest player he ever taught." Ceithaml was selected as the quarterback on the 1942 All-Big Ten Conference team, the captain of the 1942 All-American Blocking Team, and was the 19th player selected in the 1943 NFL Draft. He later served as an assistant football coach at Michigan and the University of Southern California.
The 1972 Michigan Wolverines football team was an American football team that represented the University of Michigan in the 1972 Big Ten Conference football season. In their fourth season under head coach Bo Schembechler, the Wolverines compiled a 10–1 record, outscored opponents 264–57, and were ranked sixth in both final polls. Offensive guard Tom Coyle and defensive back Randy Logan were the team captains.
The 1930 Michigan Wolverines football team represented the University of Michigan in the 1930 college football season. The head coach was former Michigan star, 31-year-old Harry Kipke, in his second year in the position.
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The 1937 Michigan Wolverines football team was an American football team that represented the University of Michigan in the 1937 Big Ten Conference football season. In their ninth season under head coach Harry Kipke, the Wolverines compiled a 4–4 record and tied for fourth place in the Big Ten. Kipke was fired after the season, having compiled a 46–26–4 record in nine years as Michigan's head coach.
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