Forest “Evy” Evashevski

Forest “Evy” Evashevski

Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan, USA
Death 30 Oct 2009 (aged 91)
Petoskey, Emmet County, Michigan, USA
Burial Saint Ignace, Mackinac County, Michigan, USA
Memorial ID 43858222 · View Source
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Hall of Fame College Football Player and Coach. Thru the 1950s, he made the Iowa Hawkeyes into a national power. Raised in Detroit, he attended Northwestern High School where he was considered too small for varsity football until his senior year; after graduation, he worked for Ford Motor Company, saving money to attend the University of Michigan. Once in Ann Arbor, Coach Fritz Crisler recognized his talent and leadership ability, using him as a single-wing quarterback. In one incident, the famously punctual Crisler was late for practice; young Evashevski told him to run a lap around the field (which the coach did), even daring to call him "Fritz". After lettering three times (in both football and baseball), and earning his degree in 1941, Evashevski was drafted by the Washington Redskins, but worked instead as head coach at Hamilton College in New York, then as an assistant at the University of Pittsburgh, prior to spending three years as a Naval Aviator during WWII. Released in 1946, he wanted to return to Michigan, but was unable to find an apartment for his family; he served as an assistant at Syracuse University, then was head coach at Washington State in 1950 and 1951, where his Cougars went 11-6-2. Hired at the University of Iowa in 1952 for $15,000 to coach a chronic losing team, he watched the Hawkeyes drop the first four games, then reworked his offense, and shocked Ohio State 8-0. Coach Evashevski's tenure was marked by winning squads, but was also marred by infighting between the coach and athletic director Paul Brecher. Iowa went 52-27-4, winning three Big Ten titles, capturing the Rose Bowl in 1957 and 1959, and earning the National Championship for 1958. From 1960 to 1970, Evashevski served as athletic director at Iowa, facing repeated allegations that he was working against his successors Jerry Burns and Ray Nagel, wanting them to fail so he could return to the sideline. The Coach retired to his home in Michigan after the 1970 season, and was named to the College Football Hall-of-Fame in 2000. He died shortly after being diagnosed with cancer. Always hard-nosed, he once said: "When we have to pick an All-America team out of the 11 best losers, I know I'll be finished with football".

Bio by: Bob Hufford

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bob Hufford
  • Added: 2 Nov 2009
  • Find a Grave Memorial 43858222
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Forest “Evy” Evashevski (19 Feb 1918–30 Oct 2009), Find a Grave Memorial no. 43858222, citing Lakeside Cemetery, Saint Ignace, Mackinac County, Michigan, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .