Herbert Orin "Fritz" Crisler
(January 12, 1899 – August 19, 1982) was an American football
coach who is best known as "the father of two-platoon football," an innovation in which separate units of players were used for offense and defense. Crisler developed two-platoon football while serving as head coach at the University of Michigan
from 1938 to 1947. He also coached at the University of Minnesota
(1930–1931) and Princeton University
(1932–1937). Before coaching, he played football at the University of Chicago
under Amos Alonzo Stagg
, who nicknamed him Fritz after violinist Fritz Kreisler
During his 18-year career as a head football coach, Crisler's teams won 116 games, lost 32, and tied 9. At Michigan, Crisler won 71 games, lost 16, and tied 3 for a winning percentage of .806. Crisler introduced the distinctive winged football helmet
to the Michigan Wolverines
in 1938. The Michigan football team has worn a version of the design ever since. Crisler had first introduced the winged helmet design at Princeton in 1935. He was also the head basketball coach at Princeton for two seasons from 1932 to 1934, tallying a mark of 32–11.
Crisler's 1947 Michigan Wolverines football team
, dubbed the "Mad Magicians," had an undefeated campaign, ending with a 49–0 triumph over Southern California
in the 1948 Rose......