Fred Crawford
No. 32     Duke Blue Devils
Born:July 27, 1910
Waynesville, North Carolina
Died:March 5, 1974(1974-03-05) (aged 63)
Tallahassee, Florida
Career information
Height6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Weight190 lb (86 kg)
CollegeDuke University
High schoolWaynesville Township High School
The McCallie School
Career history
As player
1932–33Duke Blue Devils
1935Chicago Bears
Career highlights and awards



Frederick Eugene Crawford (July 27, 1910 – March 5, 1974) was an American football player.

Early years

Fred Crawford was born on July 27, 1910 in Waynesville, North Carolina, the son of congressman William T. Crawford.[1][2] Fred attended both Waynesville (NC) Township HS and The McCallie School.[3]



He played at tackle and end for Wallace Wade's Duke Blue Devils, selected All-Southern in 1932[4] and a consensus All-American in 1933.[5] Crawford was the first football player to gain first-team All-America honors from the state of North Carolina.[6][7] He was mainly responsible in 1933 for the defeat of the Tennessee Volunteers, that team's first loss in over two and a half seasons.[6] It caused Tennessee coach Bob Neyland to remark: "He gave the finest exhibition of tackle play I have ever seen."[8] Duke won the Southern Conference the same year, winning 9 straight until a loss at Georgia Tech knocked Duke out of contention for the Rose Bowl.[9]

Crawford was elected to the NC Sports Hall of Fame in 1964,[10] the College Football Hall of Fame in 1973, and the Duke Sports Hall of Fame in 1976.[11]

One description of Crawford's play said he was "a hell-for-leather, hard-hitting, hard-charging, fast-running juggernaut" who "covered punts like a run-away express'" and "charged through the line like a lion going in for the kill.[12] Coach Wallace Wade called Crawford "the greatest lineman I ever saw."[13]


After a brief motion picture career,[14] Crawford played professionally for the Chicago Bears. He played just a year due to a lack of size for an interior line position[10] and a broken leg.[13] George Halas discovered Crawford could throw quite far indeed, and in a preseason game let him throw what was a completion to Ed Kawal that went 82 yards in the air.[15]

World War II

He served in the United States Air Force during World War II.[14]


After the war until the time of his death he was an official with the Florida State Motor Vehicle Department.[6][14]


  1. ^ North Carolina, Birth Indexes, 1800-2000 [database on-line].
  2. ^ "Fred Crawford (1910-1974)".
  3. ^ "Fred Crawford". Archived from the original on 2014-12-24.
  4. ^ "All-Southern 11 Is Picked". Ironwood Daily Globe. December 1, 1932.
  5. ^ "AP All America". Bismarck Tribune. 1933-12-02.
  6. ^ a b c "Frederick A. "Fred" Crawford".
  7. ^ Theresa Jensen Lacey (2002). Amazing North Carolina. p. 79. ISBN 9781418538408.
  8. ^ "Scouts Line Up Stars On Grid Fronts". The Evening Independent. October 25, 1933.
  9. ^ Hester, James Earl (2005). Crazy about Sports: Great Memories of Special Players, Teams, and Events. Vol. 1. Author House. p. 198. ISBN 9781467027748.
  10. ^ a b "Fred Crawford". Archived from the original on 2014-12-24. Retrieved 2014-12-24.
  11. ^ "Duke Sports Hall of Fame".
  12. ^ Robert Franklin Durden (1993). The Launching of Duke University 1924-1949. Duke University Press. p. 242. ISBN 0822313022.
  13. ^ a b Michael Beadle (23 August 2010). Waynesville. p. 40. ISBN 9781439641415.
  14. ^ a b c "McCallie Alumni in the College Football Hall of Fame". Archived from the original on 2014-12-24. Retrieved 2014-12-24.
  15. ^ Daly, Dan (September 16, 2012). "Fred Crawford's heave wowed crowd in '35". The Washington Times.