|Birth: ||Jan. 27, 1920|
|Death: ||Sep. 5, 2002|
Santa Clara County
Frank Cullen "Frankie" Albert-He was an American football player. He played as a quarterback with the San Francisco 49ers in the National Football League. Albert attended Stanford University, where he led the 1940 football team to an undefeated season and the Rose Bowl. Albert was born in Chicago and attended Glendale High School in Glendale, California. He went to Stanford University where he was coached by T formation innovator Clark Shaughnessy.Albert played as Stanford's quarterback and in 1940-41 became an all-American. He was the first college T formation quarterback in modern football history. He led the team of 1940 to a 9-0 regular season, 21-13 victory over Nebraska in the Rose Bowl and a No. 2 national ranking, behind Minnesota. He was also a member of Stanford's Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. After graduation Albert served in the Navy during World War II for four years. In the 1942 NFL Draft the Chicago Bears selected Albert with the 10th overall pick. After quarterbacking the Los Angeles Bulldogs of the Pacific Coast Football League in 1945, he launched his All-Pro career with the San Francisco 49ersof the All-American Football Conference in 1946. He played seven seasons with the 49ers. Albert, a 5-9 in height, 166 pound, left-handed passer, was credited for inventing the bootleg play, in which the quarterback fakes a handoff then runs wide with the ball hidden on his hip. Usually when he would roll out with the ball he would look for his main receiver Alyn Beals. "'Beals was my main receiver,' said Albert. 'Boy, did he have some great moves! He was a good faker. I can remember several times setting up to pass and watching the defensive back fall down after Alyn put a fake on him. The back would trip over his own feet. I'd look at the defensive man lying on his butt while Alyn was wide open." In 1948 he was named AAFC co-Most Valuable Player with Otto Graham. He played his last two seasons competing with Y. A. Tittle. In 1950, Albert was named to the Pro Bowl when the 49ers joined the National Football League. He retired after the season of 1950. In seven pro seasons, Albert threw for 10,795 yards and 115 touchdowns. Albert played one final season with the Canadian Football League's Calgary Stampeders.After his retirement, the San Francisco 49ers hired him as a scout and coach. He became the head coach in 1956 by owner Tony Morabito. He coached the 49ers for 3 seasons with a 19-16-1 record. After football, Albert got into real estate as he helped raise three daughters with his high school sweetheart and wife of 60 years, Martha. All three of his daughter attended Stanford. One of his daughters, Jane Albert Willens, '67, was an All-American tennis player at the Farm. He died on September 5, 2002, from Alzheimer's disease. In addition to his wife, Martha, Albert is survived by his three daughters, Nancy James, of Bend, Ore., Jane Willens, or Palo Alto, and Terry Levin, of San Francisco; and his seven grandchildren. Many who saw Frankie Albert in action credit him as being the greatest left-handed quarterback to ever play the game.
OBITUARIES Frankie Albert, 82; 1st T-Formation Quarterback :- Thursday, September 5, 2002
Frankie Albert, the first T-formation quarterback in modern football history, died Wednesday of complications from Alzheimer's disease in a Palo Alto nursing home. He was 82.
Albert, a little left-handed passer with sleight-of-hand deception, was the heart of Stanford's undefeated 1940 team that climaxed its season with a 21-13 win over Nebraska in the 1941 Rose Bowl game. Against the Cornhuskers, he threw a 40-yard touchdown pass to Hugh Gallarneau, blocked two defenders on a 39-yard punt return for a touchdown by Pete Kmetovic, got off an 85-yard quick kick and kicked three extra points.
"Go tell that [Stanford Coach] Clark Shaughnessy I'll buy him 120 acres of fine corn if he'll tell me where we can get a Frankie Albert," Nebraska Coach Biff Jones said after the game. "That kid had too much pass, too much kick, too much noodle for us."
In 1940, Albert was a unanimous All-American quarterback as a junior, but was edged out by Tom Harmon of Michigan, a senior, for the Heisman Trophy.
Born Jan. 27, 1920 in Chicago, Albert was a graduate of Glendale High, where he was CIF high school player of the year in 1937. He played only one year of varsity football in high school because he weighed only 130 pounds.
As a sophomore at Stanford, he was a 5-foot-9, 160-pound tailback on a team coached by Claude "Tiny" Thornhill that won only one game while scoring seven touchdowns in nine games. When Shaughnessy was named coach in 1940 he installed the T-formation with Albert at quarterback, Gallarneau and Kmetovic at halfbacks and Norm Standlee at fullback, and the Indians were undefeated Pacific Coast Conference champions.
Shaughnessy later said that if Albert had not succeeded as his quarterback, he might have abandoned the T-formation.
In an article for Esquire in 1943, Shaughnessy wrote of his Stanford team: "First of all, there was Albert, a superb ballhandler, a magician with the ball and a gifted field general; wonderfully observing, a great left-handed passer and a great kicker. He was neither strong nor fast. His talents were primarily those of a faker; he could fool people, and by temperament he ate up that sort of assignment."
He could play defense too. In a crucial game with USC, which had a 17-game winning streak, Albert returned an intercepted pass for a touchdown in a 21-7 win.
His senior year did not turn out as well. Stanford won six and lost three, climaxed by a 16-0 loss to California. After playing three years, Albert graduated in 1941 and joined the Navy, where he served as an aircraft officer in the Pacific during World War II.
Albert was the first player selected by the San Francisco 49ers of the then-new All-America Conference. He played seven seasons with the 49ers as a T-formation quarterback and one season with Calgary in the Canadian Football League before retiring.
The 49ers hired him as a scout and coach and in 1956 he was elevated to head coach by owner Tony Morabito, a position he held for three years. In 1957 the 49ers tied Detroit for the Western Conference title and led, 27-7, in the third quarter of a playoff game before the Lions rallied to win, 31-27.
After retiring from football, Albert and his wife, Marty, his high school sweetheart who followed him to Stanford, lived in Pebble Beach, Menlo Park and Palm Desert before Albert developed Alzheimer's and moved to Palo Alto.
Survivors include his wife; three daughters, Nancy James of Bend, Ore., Jane Willens of Palo Alto and Terry Levin of San Francisco; and seven grandchildren.
Services will be private, but a memorial service at Stanford is being planned.
The family has requested that donations be made to Stanford University, 326 Galvez St., Stanford, CA 94305, or Alzheimer's Assn., 2065 W. El Camino Real, Mountain View, CA 94040.
Created by: K
Record added: Dec 22, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 102471833