February 15, 2018 Rest in Peace Ted S. Kress

1953 Michigan Football TGeam | bigbluefootballhistory.com
Ted Kress (#41) is shown above with the 1953 Michigan Football team. He is seated in the first row – first man on the left. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

Today’s post celebrates the memory of Ted S. Kress who went to rest in peace on this day in 2003. Edward S. “Ted” Kress was born in Detroit, Michigan on March 26, 1931. He grew up in the city and became a pretty good football player.

Part I. Wolverine of the Day – Ted S. Kress

Ted S. Kress left the Motor City to continue his education and his football career at The University of Michigan in 1949. Ted was listed on the 1949 Michigan Football Roster as a Freshman halfback. Freshmen were not eligible for varsity play at this time. So, Kress learned Bennie Oosterbaan’s Single Wing Offense and hit the books.

Kress was listed as a “Sophomore” on both the 1950 and 1951 Michigan Football Rosters. Actually, he was listed as a “reserve” for the 1951 seasons. Maybe he had an injury that prevented him from contributing in 1951.

Ted worked his way onto the field and started nine games at left halfback in 1952. He played well and led the team in rushing (623 yards), total offense (1,182 yards) and scoring (36 points on six touchdowns). Ted’s “career best” game occurred at Northwestern when he carried 20 times for 218 yards and scored three touchdowns in a 48-14 victory. It was the highest single-game total at that point in Michigan Football history. It was also a new Big Ten rushing record. Unfortunately, Ted’s excellent play was not enough. Michigan finished with a final record of 5 wins and 4 losses and finished in fourth place in the Big Ten.

Ted S. Kress Michigan Football | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Ted S. Kress (#41) enjoyed two very good varsity seasons at Michigan in 1952 and 1953. He finished his career as a record-setting Wolverine and a first team All-Big Ten performer. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

Kress came back for his senior and started all nine games. His numbers dropped, just like Michigan’s offensive productivity. The 1953 team scored 207 points, but the 1953 group only put 163 points on the board. Interestingly, Michigan improved on their overall record in 1953 (6-3-0) despite their lack of offense. Although Ted’s productivity was down, his all-around play  helped him earn first team All-Conference honors in 1953.

Yes, Ted S. Kress passed, rushed, caught passes, returned punts and kickoffs for Michigan. He did everything you could do on a football field except kick and carry water. Kress did everything that Coach Oosterbaan asked him to do and he did it very well!

So, there you have it! Ted S. Kress finished his career as an accomplished Wolverine. He was good enough to get drafted in the NFL, but never played on Sundays because of some problems with concussions. Kress went on to a successful business career in Illinois. Please take a moment to reflect on Ted’s contributions to the history of Michigan football. May Ted S. Kress always rest in peace. Go Blue!



Part II. Trivia Question of the Day – February 14, 2018

Who was Bo’s first All-American offensive lineman?

Part II. Trivia Question Answer for February 14, 2018 – Dan Dierdorf

Yes, Dan Dierdorf, the young man who walked out the back door when Bo arrived for a recruiting visit while he was coaching at Miami of Ohio. Yes, Dan Dierdorf, the same young man who tried to welcome Bo to Michigan when he arrived to coach the Wolverines. Bo who had an incredible memory, ignored Dan’s attempt at a handshake. Instead, Schembechler grabbed Dierdorf’s stomach and said “you’re fat and you’re mine!”

Dan Dierdorf Michigan Football | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Dan Dierdorf played his way out of Bo’s “dog house” and became an All-American lineman. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

Bo Schembechler and Dan Dierdorf didn’t exactly get off to the best start, but things worked out great in the end. Dan Dierdorf only played two seasons for Bo, but he blossomed into a first-team All-American tackle in 1970. Dierdorf left Ann Arbor as a Big Ten Champion and an All-American. He also gained a lifetime best friend named Glenn Edward Schembechler. It’s funny how things work out in life sometimes, isn’t it?

Part III. Trivia Question of the Day – February 15, 2018

Who was the first, and only, opposing coach to toss a chair into the stands at Michigan Stadium?


Barry Gallagher

Barry Gallagher

Barry Gallagher is a self-proclaimed Michigan Football Archeologist. He spends a considerable amount of his time digging into the 138-year history of Wolverine Football. He is on a mission to share his findings with Maize and Blue football fans everywhere. He is the author of one book about Michigan Football titled "21-194-13 Michigan Football's Greatest Era". His second book titled, "The Legend of Bo Schembechler-How an Unknown Buckeye Became the Winningest Coach in Michigan Football History" was released on September 12, 2017. You can learn something about Michigan Football everyday by going to his website at: bigbluefootballhistory.com. You can also follow him on Social Media.
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