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Herb McCracken


George Herbert McCracken

Inducted 1973

Date of Birth



Pittsburgh, PA


Lafayette College (1924-1935)

Allegheny College (1921-1923)


Herb McCracken played end and halfback for Pittsburgh 1918-1920. Pop Warner was his coach, and Jock Sutherland was a teammate. He made a 58-yard touchdown run against Geneva in 1920. But his greatest contribution came in coaching. He coached Allegheny 1921-23 with a 17-7-1 record. McCracken coached Lafayette 1924-35. He pioneered the use of the lateral pass and led Lafayette to victories over larger football powers. His teams beat Pittsburgh 1924-25-26 by scores of 10-0, 20-9, 17-7. The 1925 game was Pitt's only loss. The Lafayette Leopards knocked off Penn State in 1928 and 1931, tied West Virginia in 1927. McCracken's record was 59-40-6 at Lafayette and 76-47-7 overall. His 1926 team was 9-0 and featured George B. (Mike) Wilson, who led the nation in touchdowns scored, 26. In 1980, McCracken suited up for the Pitt alumni-varsity game. He went in for one play only and was given the ball. The line opened, and McCracken, age 80, ambled 19 yards for a gift touchdown. While coaching at Lafayette he founded Scholastic Coach, a magazine. He left coaching in 1935 to devote full time to publishing. By 1974, when he retired, Scholastic Publications had developed other magazines and was issuing 60 million books a year.


Wins 76

Losses 47

Ties 7

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