- Category : Sports-Business-Coach-Manager-Owner
- Type : ME
- Profile : 4/6 - Opportunistic / Role Model
- Definition : Split - Small (56)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Eden 2
He was called "crazy legs" for the way his feet splayed wildly behind him as he ran, considered football's greatest receiver.
Hirsch's athletic career began early when, at the age of 17 he was chosen for the All-Big U. as a Wisconsin sophomore. During WW II he entered the University of Michigan where he soon became the last of the school's four-letter men. After playing in the college all-star game in 1946 he moved on to play professionally with the Chicago Rockets of the AAFC.
Hirsch sustained a fractured skull in an auto accident in 1948 where he subsequently experienced a loss of body control. He struggled his way back to health against the admonitions of doctors who said he would never play football again. This facet of his life was documented in a movie entitled "Crazy Legs, All American." By 1949, Hirsch returned to football, playing half-back for the Los Angeles Rams. He became the game's first flanker, revolutionizing the sport with his dashing artistry. In 1951, he caught 17 touchdown passes, tying a record by Don Huston, and at the same time establishing his own record by gaining 1,495 yards that season.
He retired in 1957, his last game memorialized by a mob scene in the Los Angeles Coliseum as wild and adoring fans showed their appreciation of his accomplishments by tearing the uniform off of his back. Hirsch went on to become the Athletic Director at the University of Wisconsin. He died at age 80 on January 28, 2004 in a Madison, WI assisted living facility.