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January 28, 2018 – Happy Birthday Jon Jansen

Posted on January 28, 2018 by Barry Gallagher

Today is a great day to send out Happy Birthday greetings to a former Michigan great named Jon Jansen. Jon played at Michigan from 1995 to 1998. We will talk more about his Wolverine Football career after we look at today’s trivia questions and answers.

Part I. Trivia Question of the Day – January 27, 2018:

Who was the first Michigan receiver to wear the #1?

Part I. Trivia Question Answer for January 27, 2018:  Paul Goebel  

Paul Goebel was the first “receiver” to wear #1 on his jersey. He wore #6 for the 1920 and 1921 seasons because upper classmen Angus Goetz (1919 and 1920) and Bob Dunne (1921) also favored that number.

Paul Gordon Goebel was born in May 1901 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He came to Ann Arbor after a successful high school career in Grand rapids. He was an outstanding student and athlete in his hometown. Goebel chose to continue his education and his football at The University of Michigan.

Paul Goebel played on the 1919 and 1920 Michigan Football teams. . He started seven games at right end in 1920 and earn his first varsity letter. Michigan finished the 1920 season with a record of 5 wins and 2 losses. The Wolverines won 2 games and lost 2 games in the conference with was only good enough for sixth place. Definitely not up to Yost’s expectations, but better than the losing season of 1919 (3-4-0)

Goebel returned in 1921 to improve on his play and hopefully to help the Wolverines do the same! He started seven more games in his Junior year and earned his second letter on a team that continued to improve. In fact, Paul played so well that he earned All-American honors. The Wolverines ended the season with a final record of 5-1-1. They finished with a conference record of 2-1-1 and moved up to fifth place. Better, but not good enough for Fielding Yost!

Captain Paul Goebel Michigan Football 1922 | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Paul Goebel was a three year letterman at Michigan who captained the 1922 team. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

Senior Paul Goebel returned to play end for one more season under the legendary Fielding Yost. He would, however, have another title. Paul was named captain of the 1922 Michigan Football team. It is a huge honor to be named a Michigan captain and Paul Goebel took the responsibility very seriously. Despite some chronic knee problems, he did his best to lead the Wolverines on the field and in the locker room. Goebel actually played the season with a knee brace and it helped him stay on the field. He started five games at right end and earned his third varsity letter. More importantly, he, and his teammates became champions when the Wolverines finished the season with a perfect record of 4-0-0 in conference play. The only blemish on the 1922 season was a tie (0-0) against Vanderbilt. Michigan ended the season with a final record of 6-0-1.

Paul Goebel played a lot of good football for Michigan. He lettered on three Fielding Yost teams and finished his career as a champion! He enjoyed a very successful life after his playing days and served his hometown and his alma mater very well for his entire adult life! Take a moment today, to honor his memory and celebrate his accomplishments. Thank you, Paul Goebel for your contributions to the history of Michigan football. Paul Goebel died on January 26, 1988 at the age of eighty-six. May he always rest in peace. Go Blue!


Part II. Trivia Question of the Day – January 28, 2018:

Who was the first African American to “captain” a Michigan Football team?

Part III. Wolverine of the Day: Jon Jansen      

Jonathan Ward “Jon” Jansen was born on this day at Clawson, Michigan. He grew up to be a very big man. In fact, he measured 6 feet 7 inches and weighed 240 pounds by the time he finished a very successful high school football career.

Jon Jansen arrived in Ann Arbor in 1994 and was listed as a “Middle Guard/Defensive Tackle” on Gary Moeller’s last team roster. Jansen did not play a down in 1994 and burned his redshirt. During the off-season, some big changes took place in Ann Arbor in May 1995 when Coach Gary Moeller resigned under pressure.

Jon Jansen Michigan Football 1997 | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Jon Jansen lettered at Michigan from 1995 to 1998. He earned the nickname “Rock” because that’s how solid he was at right tackle. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

Lloyd Carr didn’t make a lot of changes in the Michigan Football program in his first year, but one change greatly affected the life of Jon Jansen. The Michigan coaches thought that Jon had more potential on the offensive side of the ball. They decided to move him in the spring and that’s when he got everyone’s attention. Jansen was recognized as Michigan’s most improved player in the spring of 1995 and won the John Maulbetsch Award for his efforts. During the summer, he just kept getting strong and better. By the time the 1995 season rolled around he was the starting right tackle on Lloyd Carr’s first football team. Jon started all thirteen games that season and every other game he played in for his final three years at Michigan.

Jon Jansen was the first Michigan Man to start fifty consecutive games. He was a force on the Michigan offensive line and blocked his way to two consecutive first team All-Big Ten awards. Jansen’s efforts were recognized in his final season when he earned first team All-American honors. Of course, he was one of the BIG reasons that Michigan won the AP’s National Championship in 1997.  Jon Jansen also helped lead Michigan to conference championships in 1997 and 1998 (Co-with Wisconsin).

In addition to being an outstanding player, Jon was a great teammate. He was a two-time captain who also won the Frederick Matthaei and Hugh Rader Awards during his illustrious career.

Yes, Jon Jansen was a great lineman who had a wonderful career in Ann Arbor. He went on to a very successful career in the National Football League. He was inducted into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 2017.

Jon Jansen Michgian Football All-American 1998 | bigbluefootballhistory.com

Jon Jansen finished his Michigan career as a first team All-American who started 50 straight games on the “O” line. Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.

So, today is a great day to recognize the great career of Jonathan Ward Jansen. I hope that Jon Jansen has a very Happy Birthday today! Go Blue!



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