Today is a good day to remember another Michigan Wolverine named George F. Ceithaml who went to rest in peace on this day in 2012. George Frank Ceithaml was born on February 10, 1921 in Chicago, Illinois. He became an excellent athlete and football player at Lindbloom High School in Chicago, Illinois. George earned All-City honors in 1937 and 1938 as a quarterback. He decided to continue his education and his football at Michigan.
(Note – George F. Ceithaml (#89) is shown above with the 1942 Michigan Football team. He is seated in the center of the front row (with the football). Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.)
George F. Ceithaml arrived in Ann Arbor in the fall of 1939. He spent his freshman year learning the Fritz Crisler Single Wing Offense. Apparently, he learned his lessons well. He won the back-up quarterback spot behind Forest Evashevski and earned a letter in 1940. George showed great promise that season and was selected as the Meyer Morton Award winner for his excellent performance in spring drills.
Ceithaml took advantage of Evy’s graduation and won the starting quarterback job for the 1941 season. He started eight games that fall and earned his second varsity letter at the end of the season. Michigan posted a record of 6-1-1 in 1941 and won 3 games, lost 1 and tied 1 for second place in the Big Ten.
George F. Ceithaml was back for his senior season in 1942. He was the team captain and the quarterback for Michigan’s first ten game season under Coach Crisler. George started every game and helped Michigan win 7 games and lose 3. The Wolverines slipped to third in the conference with a final record of 3 wins and 2 losses. Michigan, like every school in the country was starting to lose players to the war effort in 1942. George Ceithaml, along with most of his teammates, played on both sides of the ball and earned the title of “Iron Men” for their gritty play.
Ceithaml started 18 games during his final two season for the Wolverines. Michigan posted a record of 13 wins 4 losses and 1 tie when George F. Ceithaml played quarterback for Michigan. According to Fritz Crisler Ceithaml was a very smart player who did an excellent job of running Crisler’s complicated Single Wing Offense. He was also a tough guy who handled the ball, blocked, and tackled for almost sixty minutes every Saturday.
Please enjoy your day today, but take time to remember a wonderful Wolverine named George F. Ceithaml. Take time to appreciate George’s contributions to the great history of Michigan Football. May George F. Ceithaml always rest in eternal peace. Go Blue!
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