Michigan football has produced a lot of big name coaches and players, but one of the finest men who played and coached for Michigan deserves to be a little bigger.
At last week’s homecoming game, Michigan had planned to honor one of its great alums, a man named Chalmers Elliott – which might explain why he goes by “Bump.” He was an All-American football player and a Big Ten champion coach, but earned greater fame as the athletic director at Iowa, Michigan’s opponent this weekend. Pneumonia kept the 86-year old legend from making it, however, so I’m going to honor him today.
He was born in Detroit in 1925, and served in the Marines during World War II. He returned to star for Michigan as a halfback alongside his younger brother Pete, who played quarterback. Their offense was so dazzling, seven players could touch the ball on a single play. That earned them the nickname, the Mad Magicians, plus the national title in 1947 – the same year the conference named Bump Elliott the MVP.