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Halas, George Stanley, Sr.

Halas, George Stanley, Sr., 1895–1983, American football coach, b. Chicago, grad. Univ. of Illinois, 1918. He served in the navy in World War I, played baseball (1919) with the New York Yankees, then founded (1920) the Decatur, Ill., Staleys football team and co-founded what became the National Football League. He moved the team to Chicago in 1921, and renamed them the Bears in 1922. Papa Bear retired as a coach and player in 1930, but returned to coaching in 1933. Halas's offense perfected the use of the T formation, and he was one of the first to hold daily practices and broadcast games (on radio). After again serving in the navy (1943–45), he returned to coaching (1946–55, 1958–67). Halas led the Bears to six NFL championships (1921, 1933, 1940, 1941, 1946, 1963) during his career after retiring from coaching, he remained chief executive and principal owner of the team until his death.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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