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Rod Franz


Rodney Thomas Franz

Inducted 1977

Date of Birth



San Francisco, CA


University of California (1946-1949)


Rodney Thomas Franz played guard at the University of California from 1946 through 1949. Starting as a freshman recently released from the Army Air Corps, he played forty consecutive games, including two Rose Bowl games. He helped California turn around from a 2-7 season to 9-1, 10-1, 10-1 seasons, with two of those three losses coming in the Rose Bowl in close games with Northwestern and Ohio State. Franz became only the second Pacific Coast player to become a three-time first-team All-America winning All-America in 1947, 1948 and unanimous selection in 1949. Franz not only opened holes on offense for backs like fellow Hall of Famer Jackie Jensen, he excelled at defense. In a game against Washington, in which the Bears allowed only 61 yards total offense, Franz admonished his teammates, "Let's tighten up, gang," he said, "they gained a yard that time." Following graduation, he coached high school football and then joined the California coaching staff, leaving in 1957 to enter business. Franz played one year under Frank Wickhorst and three under Lynn Waldorf.


Height 6'1

Weight 198

Career Highlights

  • 1949 All-West Coast
  • 1949 Unanimous All-America
  • 1948 All-West Coast
  • 1948 First Team All-America
  • 1947 All-West Coast
  • 1947 First Team All-America
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