Fran Nagle
Biographical details
Born(1924-07-01)July 1, 1924
Lynn, Massachusetts, U.S.
DiedAugust 15, 2014(2014-08-15) (aged 90)
Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.
Playing career
1947–1948UMass–Fort Devens
1951Philadelphia Eagles
1952Montreal Alouettes
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Head coaching record

Francis Joseph Nagle[1] (July 1, 1924 – August 15, 2014)[2] was an American football player, coach, and professor.

Early life

Nagle graduated from high school in West Lynn, Massachusetts and served in the United States Army Air Corps in World War II. A radio operator, Nagle's B-24 bomber was shot down on his first mission and he became a prisoner of war during the last three months of the conflict.[3]

Playing career

He initially attended University of Massachusetts-Fort Devans (a temporary two-year college and campus for military veterans)[4][5] from 1947 to 1948 and became the school's starting quarterback despite never having playing football before.[3] In 1949, Nagle followed his coach, Bob Davis, to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.[3][6] As a quarterback at Nebraska, Nagle was the statistical leader for passing yards from 1949 and 1950.[7] He holds a career Nebraska top 25 passing record at 1,289 yards in 190 attempts with 41.6% completions and 13 touchdowns.[7] Nagle was the 43rd pick in the fourth round National Football League draft pick as a back for the Philadelphia Eagles in 1951.[8] In 1952, he was signed by the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League but a training camp injury ended his career.[3][6]


In 1950, Nagle was chosen as a Big Seven Conference All-Conference selection.[9] In 1951, Nagle played in the Senior Bowl, the College All-Star game, and the East-West Shrine Game. Nagle was inducted into the Nebraska Football Hall of Fame in 1992.[10]

Coaching career

Nagle was the 25th head football coach at Doane College in Crete, Nebraska and he held that position for two seasons, from 1953 and 1954. His coaching record at Doane was 6–10–2.[11]

Head coaching record

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Doane Tigers (Nebraska College Conference) (1953–1954)
1953 Doane 4–3–2 3–2–2 T–4th
1954 Doane 2–7 2–5 6th
Doane: 6–10–2 5–7–2
Total: 6–10–2

Later life

Nagle would go on to receive his PhD in physiology at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in 1966 and would teach physiology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.[12][3][6] Nagle died on August 15, 2014, at the age of 90.[3][6]


  1. ^'47%2C+Joins+All-Stars+in+'51&pqatl=google[dead link]
  2. ^ Fran Nagle's obituary
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Nagle, Francis Joseph". August 16, 2014.
  4. ^ "Fort Devens". Lost UMass.
  5. ^ "Massachusetts State College-Fort Devens: Ayer, Massachusetts (1946-1949)".
  6. ^ a b c d Sipple, Steven M. (August 18, 2014). "Ex-Husker quarterback Fran Nagle dies". Lincoln Journal-Star.
  7. ^ a b Nebraska NCAA Record Holders
  8. ^, 1951 NFL Draft
  9. ^ "Nebraska Media Guide" (PDF). Archived from the original on July 12, 2011. Retrieved November 11, 2008.((cite web)): CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  10. ^ Nebraska Football Hall of Fame
  11. ^ Doane College coaching records Archived May 25, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ Nagle, Francis Joseph (1966). Local responses of skeletal muscle and skin vascular beds in exercise in the dog hindlimb (PhD). University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. OCLC 24855820.