American Football Database
Dudley DeGroot
Biographical details
Born(1899-11-10)November 10, 1899
Chicago, Illinois
DiedMay 5, 1970(1970-05-05) (aged 70)
El Cajon, California
Alma materStanford University
Playing career
Head coaching record
Overall117–67–9 (college football)
26–16–3 (NFL/AAFC)
8–24 (college basketball)
2–4 (college baseball)
Accomplishments and honors
2 Far Western (1932, 1934)
1 CCAA (1939)
All-American athlete, 1922
Medal record
Men's rugby union
Competitor for the  United States


Gold 1924 Paris Rugby

Dudley Sargent DeGroot (November 10, 1899 – May 5, 1970) was an American athlete and coach, primarily of American football. He served as the head coach for the Washington Redskins of the National Football League (NFL) from 1944 and 1945, tallying a mark of 14–5–1; his winning percentage of .737 is the best in franchise history for coaches with at least one full season. DeGroot was also the head football coach at Santa Barbara State College—now the University of California, Santa Barbara (1926–1928), San Jose State University (1932–1939), the University of Rochester (1940–1943), West Virginia University (1948–1949), and the University of New Mexico (1950–1952), compiling a career college football record of 117–67–9. In addition, he served as the head coach of the Los Angeles Dons of the All-America Football Conference (AAFC) from 1946 to 1947.

Playing career

DeGroot's collegiate participation in sports records that at Stanford University he competed in basketball, football, swimming, and water polo. Playing under the head coach, Pop Warner, he became the Stanford Cardinal football team captain in 1922 and their first All-American athlete.

In both 1923 and 1924, DeGroot was the Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletes of America, 4A, ICAAAA, or IC4A, backstroke champion.

DeGroot was a member of the United States rugby team that won an Olympic gold medal during the 1924 competition in Paris.[1] A journal by DeGroot about the activities of this Olympic rugby team was published throughout 23 days during July 1924 by the newspaper, The Call.[2]

Coaching career

DeGroot's early coaching career included Santa Barbara State College, which is now one of the University of California campuses, and Menlo Junior College, the college level portion of Menlo School which became Menlo College in 1927 and now is independent, although they continue to share the same campus.

From 1932 through 1939, DeGroot was the head football coach at San Jose State University, where he put together a 60–19–8 record for the Spartans. His best season there came in 1939, when his team went undefeated and had outscored opponents 324 to 29. As of 2006 on a list published on Mercury News of the seven biggest turnarounds for a single season in the history of the Spartans, only DeGroot is listed twice, for 1932 and 1937. The statistics for these are: the record for the 1932 season is 7–0–2 with a previous season of 1–7 and a margin of six and, the record for the 1937 season is 11–2–1 with a previous season of 5–4 and another margin of six.

His next team leadership was at the University of Rochester, where he was football coach from 1940 through 1943. DeGroot's record there was 24–6.

Moving to professional sports, he then took over the Washington Redskins, a National Football League (NFL) team, in Washington, D.C. Although they lost the NFL championship for that year by one point, 15–14, to the Cleveland Rams, the Redskins won the Eastern Division title in 1945 with DeGroot as their coach. During two seasons with the Los Angeles Dons of the new All-America Football Conference, DeGroot's record was 14–12–2.

DeGroot returned to collegiate coaching as the head football coach at West Virginia University during 1948 through 1949. His record for the West Virginia Mountaineers was 13–9–1. At the University of New Mexico from 1950 through 1952, DeGroot's record was 13–17 for the Lobos.

Scientific recognition

DeGroot received his doctorate degree in education and was recognized as one of the foremost oologists and ornithologists in the United States. His work in oology continues to be discussed in scientific publications.[3]

Personal and family information

Notable members of his immediate family include his son, Dudley E. DeGroot, who obtained his doctorate degree in anthropology,[4][5][6][7][8][9] and one of his daughters, Alice A. DeGroot, who became a large animal veterinarian holding patents for her inventions.[10]


DeGroot died at the age of 70 on May 5, 1970 at his home in El Cajon, California.[11]

Head coaching record

College football

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Santa Barbara State Roadrunners (Independent) (1926)
1926 Santa Barbara State 2–4
Santa Barbara State Roadrunners (California Coast Conference) (1927–1928)
1927 Santa Barbara State 2–7 2–1
1928 Santa Barbara State 4–5 2–2 5th
Santa Barbara State: 8–16 4–3
San Jose State Spartans (Far Western Conference) (1932–1934)
1932 San Jose State 7–0–2 3–0–2 T–1st
1933 San Jose State 5–4 3–1 2nd
1934 San Jose State 3–3–4 2–0–3 T–1st
San Jose State Spartans (Independent) (1935–1938)
1935 San Jose State 5–5–1
1936 San Jose State 5–4
1937 San Jose State 11–2–1
1938 San Jose State 11–1
San Jose State Spartans (California Collegiate Athletic Association) (1939)
1939 San Jose State 13–0 3–0 1st
San Jose State: 60–19–8 11–1–5
Rochester Yellowjackets () (1940–1943)
1940 Rochester 4–3
1941 Rochester 6–1
1942 Rochester 7–1
1943 Rochester 6–1
Rochester: 23–6
West Virginia Mountaineers (Independent) (1948–1949)
1948 West Virginia 9–3 W Sun
1949 West Virginia 4–6–1
West Virginia: 13–9–1
New Mexico Lobos (Border Conference) (1950)
1950 New Mexico 2–8 2–5 7th
New Mexico Lobos (Skyline Conference) (1952)
1951 New Mexico 4–7 2–4 7th
1952 New Mexico 7–2 5–1 2nd
New Mexico: 13–17 9–10
Total: 117–67–9
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title
Indicates BCS bowl, Bowl Alliance or Bowl Coalition game.

See also

  • List of Olympic medalists in rugby union


  1. The Story of How Rugby Launched the Olympic Games Paris 1924, Olympic News, May 4, 2019
  2. Given, Karen, After 92 Years, The United States Still Holds The Olympic Rugby Crown, August 6, 2016 - with extensive quotes from the Dudley S. DeGroot journal
  3. Henderson, Carrol L., Oology, Ralph's Talking Eggs: Bird Conservation Comes Out of Its Shell
  4. obituary Archived 2016-04-02 at the Wayback Machine - Dudley E. DeGroot
  5. Dudley E. DeGroot, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology, 1927-2012, Amy L. Santee, Anthropologizing, December 12, 2012
  6. Dudley Edward DeGroot obituary
  7. An Historic Resources Survey of the Coastal Zone of Sarasota County, Florida, prepared for the Sarasota County Board of County Commissioners, Sarasota County Department of Natural Resources, and the Sarasota County Department of Historical Resources by the University of South Florida Department of Anthropology, Tampa, Florida for the Florida Department of Environmental Regulation per CM.235 Agreement for Cultural Resources Management; March 1990, pp. 5, 213 "...A great deal of information was generously shared by colleagues and concerned Sarasota County residents. We wish to acknowledge the special contributions of the following: ... Kafi Benz, Dudley deGroot ..."
  8. Meacham, Andrew, Eckerd professor, Navy Reserve Rear Adm. Dudley DeGroot dies at 85, Tampa Bay Times, Wednesday, December 19, 2012
  9. Serrie, Hendrick, Dudley Edward DeGroot In Memoriam Archived 2016-08-17 at the Wayback Machine, Anthropology News, July 25, 2016
  10. United States Patent 4483275
  11. "Dr. Dudley DeGroot, Ex-Football Coach". The New York Times. Associated Press. May 7, 1970. Retrieved July 26, 2011.

External links