Today's Tidbit... Fritz Crisler, Winged Helmets, and Tearaway Jerseys
The story of Fritz Crisler borrowing Princeton’s painted winged helmet design for use at Michigan is well known. He was even smart enough to change the helmet colors from black and orange to blue and yellow (aka maize) at Michigan.
Less well-known is Crisler’s bringing tearaway jerseys west when he shifted from coaching the Tigers to the Wolverines. Crisler had watched a Yale defender latch onto a Princeton jersey, pulling down the back from behind and keeping the runner from scoring. After that, Crisler had his backs wear jerseys made of lighter fabric and less effective stitching.
Crisler arrived at Michigan for the 1938 season, Tom Harmon’s sophomore year. Harmon benefitted from tearaway jerseys during his 1940 Heisman Trophy season.
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