Today’s post celebrates the memory of Harrison “Boss” Weeks who went to rest in peace on this day in 1906 at the age of twenty-six. Apparently, he died of complications from typhoid fever or diphtheria which was very sad. According to the Wikipedia article linked below, Harrison Samuel “Boss” Weeks was born on April 3, 1879 at Fort McIntosh, Texas, His father was a military officer so young Harrison saw a lot of Texas and New Mexico growing up. When Harrison’s father left the military, the Weeks family returned to dad’s hometown – Allegan, Michigan.
(note -Team Captain Boss” Weeks is pictured above with the undefeated Michigan team of 1902. Weeks is in the middle row, holding the ball, with Fielding Yost to his immediate left. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.)
Harrison S. Weeks came to Ann Arbor in 1899 to earn a college degree and play football for the Michigan Wolverines, just like some of his brothers. As it turned out, he accomplished both tasks successfully.
Weeks played enough as a freshman and sophomore to earn letters as a back-up quarterback in 1899 and 1900. He played on Gustave Ferbert’s last team (1899) and Bif Lea’s only team (1900). Michigan went 15-4-1 during that time, but the best was yet to come.
Harrison Weeks came back in 1901 to play for his third coach in three seasons. Fielding Harris Yost arrived in Ann Arbor and was eager to make a name for himself. Harrison Weeks, and some other talented football players, helped the energetic Yost do just that!
Harrison Weeks became the undisputed “boss” of the first two Yost teams that took college football by storm. He led Michigan to two perfect seasons from 1901 to 1902. Even more amazing was the fact that Michigan outscored opponents by a margin of 1,194 to 12 during that span. It was, and still is, the most dominant two-year run of football ever! Boss Weeks led the “Point-a-Minute” teams that could not be stopped. He helped Michigan win two straight conference titles, two consecutive national championships and the first Rose Bowl in history.
Harrison “Boss” Weeks is associated with some important Michigan “football firsts.” Here are the ones that I found:
· First quarterback to lead Michigan to eleven wins in 1901 (11-0-0)
· Boss was the first quarterback to lead Michigan to a national championship in 1901.
· Weeks was the first Michigan quarterback to lead the offense to over 100 points in a single game (128-0 vs Buffalo) on October 26, 1901. (Note he did it two more times in 1902 against Michigan Agricultural College 119-0 and Iowa 109-0).
· First Michigan quarterback to lead the offense to over 500 points (550) in 1901 and over 600 points (644) in 1902.
· Boss led Michigan to victory in the first Rose Bowl in January 1902.
· Weeks was the first quarterback to lead the Wolverines to a perfect record (22-0-0) over two years of football.
So, today is a good day to remember a true Michigan football great named Harrison “Boss” Weeks. Harrison S. Weeks was the “Gold Standard” for Michigan quarterbacks – period! He was a great player and a great leader which made him a legendary Wolverine player. I don’t think a quarterback will ever lead Michigan the way he did in 1901 and 1902. Thanks to Boss Weeks for setting a very high standard for Michigan quarterbacks! May he always rest in peace. Go Blue!
The Legend of Bo Schembechler is a football love story. Millions of Michigan football fans loved Bo Schembechler almost as much as he loved The University of Michigan. This insightful book details how “Bo Who” simply became “Bo” to Wolverine Nation and to college football fans across the country and around the world. It details Bo’s twenty-one-year journey to bring Michigan Football back to national prominence and how he kept it there!
Click below to order your copy!