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Herman Wedemeyer


Herman John Wedemeyer

Inducted 1979

Date of Birth



Hilo, HI


Saint Mary's College of California (1943-1947)


Herman Wedemeyer first attracted attention as a high school all-star in Honolulu in 1941-1942. He played for St. Mary's College in1943, then served in the Merchant Marine. When he returned to St. Mary's in 1945, the school had an enrollment of 142 men, and 41 were out for football. The team coached by Jimmie Phelan won its first seven games and drew big crowds - 80,000 against California at Berkeley; 60,000 against Nevada at Kezar Stadium, San Francisco; 86,000 against Southern California at Los Angeles. Wedemeyer, nicknamed Squirmin' Herman, was the star attraction. In a 20-13 victory over California, he gained 202 yards on kick returns and threw two touchdown passes. He led a 26-0 victory over Southern California. The Gaels lost in the eighth week of the season to UCLA and lost in the Sugar Bowl to Oklahoma A&M. St. Mary's was ranked seventh in the nation in the final Associated Press poll. Wedemeyer was unanimous All-America, third in the nation in total offense, fourth in passing, fourth in punting, and fourth in the Heisman vote. He played in the Shrine East-West Game and threw two touchdown passes in a 13-13 tie. Wedemeyer played for St. Mary's again in 1946-47, then played two years as a pro. His longest runs in college were in 1946, 73 yards against Santa Clara and 70 against California. His longest pass play was 85 yards against Fordham in 1946. Wedemeyer also excelled in baseball, golf, and boxing. He went home to Honolulu, became a TV actor ("Hawaii Five-O), and was elected to the state legislature. Of his 1945 performance, Jeff Cravath, Southern California coach, said: "I can't find a way to stop him. You never know if he's going to skirt the end, pass, hit the line or punt." Football historian Christy Walsh said, " watch him wiggle, squirm, tackle, pass, block, think and inspire his shaveless teammates to repeated victory over heavier, older and more experienced rivals...provokes amazement and praise."


Height 5'10

Weight 173

Career Highlights

  • 1946 Heisman - Sixth
  • 1946 Second Team All-America
  • 1945 Heisman - Fourth
  • 1945 Unanimous All-America
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