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John Smith


John Phillip Smith

Inducted 1975

Date of Birth



Hartford, CT


University of Notre Dame (1925-1927)


In 1925, Notre Dame coach Knute Rockne was faced with the task of rebuilding his team as he lost both the Four Horsemen and Seven Mules to graduation. His Irish finished 7-2-1 that season, and renewed optimism was at hand. A guard named John Smith was developing his talents that would make him the equal of Mule linemen Rip Miller and Adam Walsh. Over the next two years, Notre Dame was to chalk up a 16-2-1 slate, and Smith was to become the driving force within the Irish line. They called him "Clipper" as he moved with all the smoothness and grace of a fine clipper ship. He was quick, precise and powerful at his position. In 1926, they posted a 9-1 mark, losing only to Carnegie Tech, 19-0. The following year, Smith captained the club to a 7-1-1 record and earned All-America honors. The only loss was to arch rival Army, 18-0, and the tie was a 7-7 contest with Minnesota. The 5-9, 164-pound Smith had been the star in the trenches that season. Following graduation, Smith joined Rockne's staff as line coach. Eleven years later, he became personnel adviser for Pratt & Whitney, a position he held for 24 years.


Height 5'9

Weight 164

Career Highlights

  • 1927 Consensus All-America
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