THE 1953 STEELERS COACHES
When Joe Bach took over as head coach of the Steelers in December 1951, it marked the second time within 17 years he had been named to the Steeler head spot. He directed the 1935 Pittsburgh team that narrowly missed winning the division title and coached the following season in the pro ranks before returning to the college level.
A former Notre Dame great, Bach started his coaching career at Syracuse University under Pete Reynolds, then moved to Duquesne as an aide to Elmer Layden in 1929. In 1933, Bach took over the reins at Duquesne and developed a power house during his two seasons.
Following his first trial with the pros, Bach from 1937 through 1941 was at Niagara University and in 1942 he coached a Fort Knox eleven.
From 1943 through 1949, Bach served with distinction in the pro leagues, spending time with Detroit, Boston, and New York, before he again turned to the college game, directing St. Bonaventure College in 1950 and 1951.
Back again with the Pros, Bach has come up with one of the Steeler's strongest teams with definite designs on Eastern Conference honours.
Walter Kiesling celebrates his twenty-seventh season in professional football this year. He was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, and is a graduate of St. Thomas College.
The 49-year-old mentor started his pro career 28 years ago with a team known as the Duluth Eskimos. After two seasons with the Eskimos, he shifted talents to the Pottsville (Pa.) eleven. Then he spent five seasons with the Chicago Cardinals, two with the Chicago Bears and one with the Green Bay Packers. In 1932, while playing with the Cards, he was named all-league tackle.
He first came to Pittsburgh in 1937 to join the staff of the fabulous Johnny Blood. In 1939 Kiesling took over as head coach of the Steelers and in 1942, his team just missed winning the eastern championship.
In 1943, he served as co-coach of the Phil-Pitt combine and in 1944 he held a similar post when the Cardinals and Steelers merged. He then returned to the Packers as an assistant coach until returning to Pittsburgh.
After ten seasons of active service in the National League, Chuck Cherundolo resigned at the end of the 1948 season. Immediately, he was offered and accepted an assistant coaching berth with the Steelers.
In 1937, Cherundolo signed a pro contract with the Cleveland Rams, a club which since has switched its franchise to Los Angeles. He was with the Rams through the 1939 season and then was traded to the Philadelphia Eagles.
In 1941, he joined the Pittsburgh Steelers and during the 1942 campaign, he entered and played until his retirement in 1948.
Edgar Jones receives his professional coaching baptism this fall as backfield coach of the Steelers.
Jones, sometimes called "Special Delivery," was one of Pitt's brightest athletes in the University's "de-emphasis era," which followed the resignation of Dr. John Bain (Jock) Sutherland in 1939.
A native of Scranton, Pa., Jones came to Pitt in 1938 and before he was graduated, he established a number of all-time football records at the school.
He saw brief service with George Halas' Chicago Bears before switching over to the Cleveland Browns in the now defunct All America conference. He spent four seasons with Paul Brown.
Prior to coming to the Steelers, Jones was an assistant to Lowell (Red) Dawson, the headmaster at Pitt.
LIONS OPEN TITLE DEFENSE AGAINST POTENT STEELERS
A last-quarter rally that netted the Detroit Lions a narrow 16-13 decision over the Steelers in an exhibition game recently indicates that Pittsburgh has conference title hopes for '53.
Coach Joe Bach has picked up where his team left off at the end of the '52 season, when the Steelers were rated as probably the loop's "hottest" team, and they hope to get off to a flying start today and put a crimp in Detroit's hopes for another title in '53.
The Lions, meanwhile, jolted by the Philadelphia Eagles, 28-17, in the final exhibition game of the season last week, have been working overtime this week to sharpen their attack in an effort to get away winging in the '53 conference race.
Coach Buddy Parker predicted some time ago that this year's league race would be one of the closest on record and the exhibition season seems to bear out his contention. "Upsets" were the rule rather than the exception as all teams seemed strengthened for the 1953 season.
The Steelers have sought to come up with a blend of veterans and rookies in the right proportions to insure a winner. Coach Bach continues to rely on such established stars as quarterback Jim Finks, the league's leading touchdown passer along with Cleveland's Otto Graham last year; end Elbie Nickel, third ranking receiver in the NFL last years George Sulima, another fine offensive end; Lynn Chandnois, former Michigan State star, and the NFL's leading kickoff return specialist last year; plus Ray Mathews, one of the finest offensive halfbacks in the game.
Coming home to Detroit as a member of the Steeler club is Ted Marchibroada, Pittsburgh's number 1 draft choice from the University of Detroit, and one of the most promising rookies in the game.
Another top newcomer who figures to boost Steeler stock is Marv McFadden, a former star tackle at Michigan State, who occupies an offensive guard spot for the visitors. Tackles Bob Goana, a rookie from Wake Forest, and Bill Hegarty, a former Villanova star, bolster the Steelers forward wall, while halfback Art DeCarlo of Georgia has provided backfield strength.
The Lions, after being handicapped by a rush of injuries in the loss to the Eagles, figure to come into today's game in top physical condition. Yale Lary, Jack Christiansen, Jim Doran, and rookie tackle Charlie Ane all were forced out of the final exhibition contest but will play today.
Today's meeting is the 13th in the series between the Steelers and the Lions, with the Lions out front with an 8-4 edge in games played to date. Seven of the Lion's eight victories in the series have come in games played here in Detroit. The other triumph was a 31-6 decision scored by the Parkermen last year in the Smoky City.
The Steelers last tipped the Lions, 14-7, in 1949 in Pittsburgh.
Articles and image taken from the September 27th Lions Gridiron News.
Editor's note: The Steelers had a 6-6 record, but lost this game 21-38 to Detroit, who were champions for the second straight year.
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