Ohio State Football Forum

Ohio State Football Forum

Ohio State football fan talk.

Digging Deeper: Players Who Wore No. 40

+8 HS
Matt Gutridge's picture
July 23, 2018 at 12:34am

Lordy, lordy, we are down to 40 days until the Buckeyes host the Beavers of Oregon State to start the 2018 season. There have been eight players to wear the No. 40 for Ohio State. Today's featured players are Robert Shaw and Howard "Hopalong" Cassady.

Today's Trivia Question

What MLB team did Bob Shaw and Hopalong Cassady scout for?

Players Who Wore No. 40 At Ohio State
Jerome Fisher 1933                      
John Nagy 1934                      
Sol Maggied 1935-37                     1935-37
Andy Rosen 1939-40                     1939-40
Robert Shaw 1941-42       1942     1942   1944   1941-42
Matthew Brown 1943-45                     1943-45
James Hoffman 1951                      
Howard "Holpalong" Cassady# 1952-55 1955 1955 1954, 1955 1954 1955   1956 1954, 1955       1952-55

#The No. 40 was retired in honor of Hopalong Cassady
Did not earn a varsity letter while wearing No. 40

Bob Shaw, End (1941-42)
1921 (Richwood, Ohio)
Died: 2011 (Westerville)
High School: Fremont Ross

Ohio State
The Buckeyes were 15-2-1 with Shaw on the team.
1942 National Champion.
1942 Big Ten Title.
Lettered in basketball and track at Ohio State.
Went 1-0-1 against That Team.

1942 All-American.
1942 All-Big Ten.

Bob Shaw's athletic career per his obituary in The Columbus Dispatch:

Robert "Bob" Shaw was a natural athlete, excelling at all levels of football as a player and coach and making a mark in other sports, as well. 

Mr. Shaw's athletic skill was evident as early as high school, when he lettered three times each in football, basketball and track at Fremont Ross High School. He was first team All-Ohio in both football and basketball and won the shot put and discus in the state track and field meet. The Little Giants inducted him into the Ross Sports Hall of Fame in 1990.

At The Ohio State University, Mr. Shaw lettered twice in football under the legendary Paul Brown. Playing right end - on both offense and defense - Mr. Shaw was a member of the Buckeyes' first NCAA National Championship team in 1942 and was named a first-team All American for that season.

He also lettered in basketball and track, helping the Buckeyes to their first Western Conference track crown in 1942. But it was his exploits on the gridiron that earned Mr. Shaw a place in The Ohio State University Athletic Hall of Fame in 1996.

Mr. Shaw's National Football League career began in 1945, as he returned from the war and joined the Cleveland Rams. The Rams notched a World Championship in Mr. Shaw's rookie year. In the off-season, he played for the Toledo Jeeps of the old National Basketball League.

Among his NFL accomplishments, Mr. Shaw: "Was football's first tight end, a position created by Head Coach Clark Shaughnessey of the Rams in 1949." Set the record for most touchdown passes (5) caught in one game on October 2, 1950, playing for the Chicago Cardinals against the Baltimore Colts. His record was tied 31 and 40 years later, but has never been bested.

"Led the league in touchdowns scored (12) during the 1950 season. Also in 1950, he was named an All-Pro and played in the first NFL Pro Bowl." Was receivers coach for the Colts in 1958 when they won the World Championship in what has been called "The Greatest Game Ever Played."

After Chicago, Mr. Shaw headed north to play for the Calgary Stampeders and Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. In Calgary, he added place kicking to his repertoire and set a CFL scoring record. 

Bob Shaw's coaching career:

When it came time to hang up his cleats, Mr. Shaw returned to his roots in Ohio, where he coached high school programs in Washington Court House and Cuyahoga Falls. It wasn't long before the pros sought him out, however, and he headed for Baltimore with Mary and their 5-year-old son, Webb. In Baltimore, daughter Amy joined the family and the lineup was set.

Professional coaching families tend to lead nomadic lives, and the Shaws were no exception. Bob Shaw's pro coaching career included stints as receivers coach with the Colts, the San Francisco 49ers, Chicago Bears, the first New Orleans Saints coaching staff and the Buffalo Bills, and as head coach with the CFL's Saskatchewan Roughriders, Toronto Argonauts and Hamilton Tiger-Cats, where Mr. Shaw was named CFL Coach of the Year in 1976.

Mr. Shaw was also head coach and athletic director at New Mexico Military Institute in Roswell in the early 1960s and, after leaving pro football, returned to Otterbein as head coach from 1985 to 1987.

Continuing his multi-sport focus, Mr. Shaw also served a turn as the Ohio talent scout for the New York Yankees after leaving pro football. 

Bob Shaw's life outside of football:

Mr. Shaw earned numerous titles in his sports career, yet the ones he treasured most were "husband," "father" and "grandfather." 

Mr. Shaw served with the 104th Infantry Division, earning a Bronze Star as the Timberwolf Division fought its way across Europe. He later completed his bachelor's degree in education at Otterbein College (now Otterbein University) in Westerville, OH.

Before shipping out, he married Mary Katherine Hawkins on January 22, 1944. Mr. Shaw liked to tell the story of how the pair had fallen in love at first sight when she showed him to his seat at the Columbus movie theater where Mary worked as an usher. 

Hopalong Cassady

Howard "Hopalong" Cassady, HB (1952-55)
 1934 (Columbus)
High School: Central

Ohio State
The Buckeyes were 29-8 with Cassady on the team.
1954 National Champion.
1954 Big Ten Title.
1955 Big Ten Title.
1955 Defeated USC 20-7 to win the Rose Bowl.
Went 3-1 against That Team.

1955 Heisman Trophy.
1955 Maxwell Award.
1955 AP Athlete of the Year.
1955 Big Ten MVP.
1955 Team MVP.
1955 All-American.
1955 All-Big Ten
1954 Team MVP.
1954 All-American.
1954 All-Big Ten.
1979 College Football Hall of Fame.
1997 Varsity O Hall of Fame.
2005 Columbus Baseball Hall of Fame.

Cassady's Ohio State career per The Ohio State Team Guide:

It didn’t take Ohio State fans long to realize why Howard “Hopalong” Cassady was something special. In his first collegiate game, the season opener against Indiana in 1952, the 150-pound freshman came off the bench to score three touchdowns and lead the Buckeyes to a 33-13 victory. From then on, “Hop” was a regular in the OSU lineup, playing in 36 of a possible 37 games and leading the Buckeyes to a combined record of 29-8 during the next four years.

In 1954, Cassady won unanimous All-America honors and helped the Buckeyes to a perfect 10-0 record and the first of five national championships for Coach Woody Hayes. The 1954 season concluded with a convincing 20-7 win over Southern Cal in the Rose Bowl.

Cassady again won All-America acclaim in 1955, when he rushed for 958 yards and 15 touchdowns. At the end of the year, Cassady’s list of accolades included the Heisman Trophy and recognition by the Associated Press as the 1955 Athlete of the Year.

Cassady, who also was an outstanding defensive back, finished his collegiate career with 2,466 rushing yards. That total still ranks 11th on the all-time OSU rushing list. 

Cassady, who prepped at Columbus Central and as a boy would sneak into Ohio Stadium to see the Buckeyes play, also played baseball at OSU, starting at shortstop for three years. He is a member of the Ohio State University Athletics (1997), College Football (1979) and Columbus Baseball (2005) halls of fame.

How Cassady received the nickname Hopalong per Wikipedia:

Cassady earned the nickname "Hopalong" during his first game as a freshman for Ohio State. Columbus sportswriters who saw him play said he "hopped all over the field like the performing cowboy," a reference to the fictional characterHopalong Cassidy. In that game Cassady came off the bench to score three touchdowns in a win over Indiana University.

Cassady's NFL and Clippers career:

After graduation, Cassady was a first round pick of the Detroit Lions. He played defensive back with Detroit, Cleveland and Philadelphia before retiring. “Hop” lives in Tampa, but spent many summers in Columbus as a coach for the Columbus Clippers, the Yankees’ AAA farm club. His jersey number “40” was retired Nov. 18, 2000.

Ohio State records held when he finished his career per Wikipedia:

Cassady held some Ohio State career records for many years following his graduation. He held the career rushing record (2,466 yards) until he was surpassed by Jim Otis in 1969, the career all-purpose yards record (4,403 yards) until he was surpassed by Archie Griffin in 1974, and the scoring record (222 points) until he was surpassed by Pete Johnson in 1975.

Cassay's life after football:

After retiring from football, Cassady became an entrepreneur; he formed a company manufacturing concrete pipe. More recently, he has served as a scout for the New York Yankees baseball team, and as the first base coach for their former AAA affiliate, the Columbus Clippers.

No. 40 In The NFL Draft
BOB SHAW 1944 10 97 TE RAMS
Today's Trivia Question

What MLB team did Bob Shaw and Hopalong Cassady scout for?

Answer: Shaw and Cassady spent time scouting for the New York Yankees.

Previous Numbers
99 98 97 96 95 94 93 92 91 90
89 88 87 86 85 84 83 82 81 80
79 78 77 76 75 74 73 72 71 70
69 68 67 66 65 64 63 62 61 60
59 58 57 56 55 54 53 52 51 50
49 48 47 46 45 44 43 42 41 40

123 days until The Game.

This is a forum post from a site member. It does not represent the views of Eleven Warriors unless otherwise noted.

View 7 Comments