Henry Schulte
File:Henry F. Schulte.jpg
Track and field
Biographical details
BornFebruary 4, 1879
St. Louis County, Missouri
DiedOctober 18, 1944(1944-10-18) (aged 65)
Lincoln, Nebraska
Playing career
Position(s)Guard, center
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Eastern Michigan
Cape Girardeau College
Michigan (assistant)
Head coaching record
Overall33–26–6 (football)
College Football Data Warehouse

Henry Frank Schulte (February 4, 1879 – October 18, 1944[1]) was an American football player and coach and also a college track and field coach. Schulte played football at the University of Michigan from 1903–1905 and later coached football and track and field at Eastern Michigan University (1906–1908), University of Missouri (1914–1917), and University of Nebraska (1919–1938). Schulte was often referred to by the nickname "Indian" Schulte,[2] though he was of German rather than Native American descent.[3]


Early yearsEdit

Schulte was born in 1879 in St. Louis County, Missouri. His father, Gerhardt Henry Schulte (1846-1917), was a teamster who emigrated to the United States from Germany. His mother, Amalia, also emigrated from Germany.

Football playerEdit

File:Henry Schulte.jpg

Schulte played football at Smith Academy in St. Louis and then at Washington University in St. Louis.[4] In 1903, Schulte transferred to the University of Michigan where he played at the guard and center positions for Fielding H. Yost's famous "Point-a-Minute" teams of 1903, 1904, and 1905, which compiled a record of 33–1–1 over the three years Schulte was a starter. In late 1905 and early 1906, charges of professionalism were leveled at the major college football programs, including Michigan, leading to calls for reform or even elimination of the sport from college campuses. In response to the controversy, the faculty at Michigan ruled Schulte and two other football players, Germany Schulz and Walter Rheinschild, academically ineligible. As a result, Schulte missed the 1906 season.[5]

Football and track coachEdit

In his senior year at Michigan, Schulte began a long career in coaching as the track coach at Michigan State Normal College (now Eastern Michigan University).[2] From 1906 to 1908, Schulte served as coach of the football, baseball and track teams at Eastern Michigan University.[2][6] In three years as Eastern Michigan's football coach, Schulte compiled a 9–6–1 record.[6]

From 1909 to 1913, Schulte coached at Cape Girardeau College in Missouri.[7] He was also an assistant coach to Fielding Yost for the 1912 Michigan Wolverines football team.[8]

From 1914 to 1919, Schulte coached football and track and field at Missouri.[9] In three years as coach of the football team (1914–1917), he compiled a 16–14–2 record.[6] The track athletes he coached at Missouri included Jackson Scholz and Bob Simpson.[2] A newspaper profile of Schulte in 1917 noted his contributions to the Missouri athletic program:

"Missouri hardly can afford to let 'Indian' Schulte, the football and track coach, leave the athletic department of the university, Schulte has had splendid success at Missouri. He has turned out well coached football teams and highly successful track teams. He has given Missouri in a coaching way what C. L. Brewer has supplied in the way of careful management and the upbuilding of a fine athletic plant. Schulte, an impulsive, impetuous fellow, is beloved of his boys. He has done much for Missouri athletics. He is entitled to the best Missouri can give him."[10]

From 1919 to 1920, he was the head football coach at Nebraska, where he compiled an 8–6–3 record. He also served as the school's track coach from 1919 to 1938, and was an assistant coach for the football team from 1922 to 1927.[6][11][12] One newspaper columnist noted that "his work with the big, sturdy plainsmen of the Cornhusker state largely was responsible for the name the school built for itself."[13] Schulte was credited with building great football lines for Nebraska, evn in his years as an assistant coach; Notre Dame coach Knute Rockne frequently mentioned Schulte as "the greatest line coach in the game."[13] In 20 years as the Cornhuskers' track coach, Schulte coached his teams to 15 conference titles.[6] Schulte also served as a coach on the U.S. track team at the 1928 Summer Olympics.[3] At Nebraska, the track athletes coached by Schulte included Ed Weir, John "Choppy" Rhodes, Hugh Rhea, Sam Francis and Lloyd Cardwell.[2]

In later years, Schulte served as an instructor at coaching schools. In 1934, Schulte taught track coaching at a program in which Fritz Crisler also taught football coaching. A newspaper story on the coaching school reflected the popularity of Schulte's classes:

"Henry 'Indian' Schulte, University of Nebraska, concluded his track and field work yesterday, and was given a rousing send-off by the 200 or more coaches who have been attending his lectures. It was the opinion of numerous coaches yesterday that the Texas Tech coaching school authorities would do well to sign Schulte immediately for another course next year. ... One of the most popular lecturers to appear here, Schulte, who is getting along in years but younger in ideas and thought, has had almost as large a following as any football coach on the staff."[14]

Family, death and tributesEdit

File:Henry Schulte (1922).jpg

In 1939, Schulte resigned as Nebraska's track coach due to illness.[2] After several years of illness, Schulte died at Lincoln, Nebraska in October 1944 at age 65.[15] In its obituary for Schulte, the Associated Press referred to Schulte as the "grand old man" of the University of Nebraska track teams.[15]

Schulte was married to Neva Schulte, born in 1889 in Marcellus, Michigan. They had a son, Henry A. Schulte, born in Lincoln, Nebraska, in 1924.

When Nebraska completed a new athletic field house in 1946, it was named Schulte Fieldhouse in his honor. Schulte Fieldhouse was demolished to make room for the Tom and Nancy Osborne Athletic Complex, which was completed in 2006.[6]

Head coaching recordEdit

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Michigan State Normal (Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association) (1906–1908)
1906 Michigan State Normal 5–0–1 1–0
1907 Michigan State Normal 3–2 0–1
1908 Michigan State Normal 1–4 0–3
Michigan State Normal: 9–6–1 1–4
Missouri Tigers (Missouri Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Association) (1914–1917)
1914 Missouri 5–3 4–1 2nd
1915 Missouri 2–5–1 1–3–1 5th
1916 Missouri 6–1–1 3–1–1 2nd
1917 Missouri 3–5 2–4 5th
Missouri: 16–14–2 10–9–2
Nebraska Cornhuskers (Independent) (1919–1920)
1919 Nebraska 3–3–2
1920 Nebraska 5–3–1
Nebraska: 8–6–3
Total: 33–26–6

See alsoEdit


  1. "Track Coach Dies". Morning Avalanche (Lubbock, Texas). 1944-10-20. (places date of death at October 18, 1944)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 ""Indian" Schulte Quits Track Post at Nebraska U.". Wisconsin State Journal. 1938-07-24.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Brian Bell (1931-06-17). "On the Sidelines". Bradford Era.
  4. "untitled obituary for Henry "Pa" Schulte". Emporia Gazette. 1944-10-19.
  5. "Schulte Barred". Michigan Alumnus. April 1906. p. 322.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 "Henry Schulte profile". University of Nebraska.
  7. "Former Nebraska Track Coach Dies". Ada Evening News. 1944-10-19.
  8. "1912 Football Team". University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library.
  9. "Few Track Men at Missouri: Coach Henry Schulte Working With Small Nucleus". Des Moines Daily News. 1919-01-26.
  10. "Inside Sport Dope". Hutchinson News. 1917-01-26.
  11. "1923 Cornhusker - University of Nebraska Yearbook (Page 414)". Nebraska U - A Collaborative History.. Retrieved 2009-12-04.
  12. "Schulte Sets Pace As Nebraska Coach". Des Moines Capital. 1923-01-04.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Brian Bell (1932-11-20). "On the Sidelines". Sandusky Register.
  14. "Fritz Crisler To Conclude Gridiron Work Today; Henry Schulte Finishes Yesterday". Morning Avalanche (Lubbock, Texas). 1934-08-04.
  15. 15.0 15.1 "Henry Schulte, Veteran Husker Coach, Dies". Hutchinson News Herald. 1944-10-19.

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