Former Michigan football All-American quarterback Pete Elliott dies at age 86
Former Michigan All-American quarterback Pete Elliott died on Friday. He was 86.
Back then, voting took place before bowl games, and after Elliott led Michigan to a 49-0 win against Southern California in the 1948 Rose Bowl, an unofficial AP poll was taken with Michigan finishing ahead of Notre Dame by a margin of 226-119.
Elliott was named a first team All-American quarterback by the International News Service as a senior, but he wasn't a quarterback in the traditional sense. Though he led the team in passing and total offense in 1945, his All-American accolades were as a "defensive quarterback." Michigan's football archives state that he "came to Michigan in 1945 as a Navy trainee, starring as a runner and passer. Shifted to quarterback, where his blocking and defensive strength became invaluable."
Elliott didn't just star for the football team. He became the only Michigan athlete to earn 12 varsity letters, starring for the basketball and golf teams as well. He captained the 1946-47 basketball team.
Pete was the younger brother of Chalmers "Bump" Elliott who was also an All-American at Michigan and the head coach from 1959-68. The brothers were inducted into the Michigan Athletic Hall of Honor in 1986. Pete's son, Bruce Elliott, was a defensive back for Michigan
After college, Elliott joined the coaching ranks, winning two national titles as an assistant at Oklahoma. He served as head coach at Nebraska, California, Illinois and Miami. He stepped down from Miami in 1975 to become athletic director, a position he held until 1978.
Elliott became the executive director for the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1979 and held the position for 17 years, longer than anyone before or since.
“Pete was beloved by the entire Pro Football Hall of Fame family, including the staff, board of trustees and the Hall of Fame members," Hall of Fame shared president/executive director Steve Perry said in a release. "He was a kind and thoughtful person and an inspiration to us all. We are all better for having had him in our lives.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.