Cover image for Red Grange and the rise of modern football
Red Grange and the rise of modern football
Carroll, John M. (John Martin), 1943-
Publication Information:
Urbana : University of Illinois Press, [1999]

Physical Description:
ix, 265 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
An odd kind of family -- Football and the emergence of Red Grange -- Grange and the golden age of sport -- Football and mass society -- A media frenzy -- The great debate -- The grand eastern tour -- Barnstorming, Hollywood, and the AFL -- Down but not out -- A solid pro player -- Finding a niche -- A reluctant hero.
Personal Subject:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV939.G7 C37 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Is an element in understanding football's central place in American culture.

Author Notes

John M. Carroll is Regents' Professor of History at Lamar University and the author of Fritz Pollard: Pioneer in Racial Advancement

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Harold "Red" Grange was arguably the most significant football player of all time. He rose to prominence in the post^-World War I era by having his best games for the University of Illinois in the national spotlight against top-ranked opponents. After leaving Illinois as a national icon, he provided credibility to the fledgling pro-football ranks by playing for the Chicago Bears. History professor Carroll examines Grange's career in the light of its effect on football in particular and society in general. Grange, Carroll reveals, was one of the very first sports "celebrities." Like today's superstars, he was lured by movie contracts, he was the subject of tabloid rumors, and he attracted annoying lawsuits simply because he was famous. Grange was also one of the first ex-athletes to turn to broadcasting. This is a carefully researched, well-written study of a man who forged new ground in football and in the art of being a celebrity. Expect interest as millennium lists of great athletes continue to showcase Grange. --Wes Lukowsky

Library Journal Review

Carroll (Regents' Professor of History, Lamar Univ.) provides an excellent review of the life of Red Grange, the very mention of whom creates images of football; he is credited with being a major catalyst for the growth and increasing popularity of professional football. Starting with the historic Illinois-Michigan college football game in 1924, the author provides substantial documentation in chronicling the life of Grange from the time of his difficult, even traumatic childhood and adolescence through his successes in college and professional football to his death. Carroll details many of the social issues that not only confronted society during the 1920s and 1930s but also influenced the rise of football's popularity. The media frenzy that surrounded Grange's life helped to spotlight professional football's quest for legitimacy with sports purists. An informative and enjoyable book; highly recommended for all sports collections.ÄTim Delaney, Canisius Coll., Buffalo, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Carroll (history, Lamar Univ.) conveys the importance of the career of Harold Edward "Red" Grange (1903-91), the most significant American football player of the 20th century. Grange's career served as a catalyst for the development of professional football during the 1920s and '30s. A reluctant celebrity and folk hero, Grange was the first major sports figure to continue a career by doing play-by-play broadcast commentating. Any person interested in football history should find this biography thoroughly readable. His complete story is an important component for understanding the great game of football's status within American culture. Documentation of sources is exceptionally well done and exhaustively detailed. Highly recommended for all libraries, public or private. General readers, upper-division undergraduate and graduate students, faculty and researchers, and professionals and practitioners. H. F. Kenny Jr.; Wesleyan University

Table of Contents

Prefacep. vii
Prologue: Comet over the Prairiep. 1
1. An Odd Kind of Familyp. 11
2. Football and the Emergence of Red Grangep. 25
3. Grange and the Golden Age of Sportp. 43
4. Football and Mass Societyp. 59
5. A Media Frenzyp. 77
6. The Great Debatep. 97
7. The Grand Eastern Tourp. 107
8. Barnstorming, Hollywood, and the AFLp. 119
9. Down but Not Outp. 140
10. A Solid Pro Playerp. 158
11. Finding a Nichep. 181
12. A Reluctant Herop. 196
Epilogue: Red Grange in Perspectivep. 211
Notesp. 219
Indexp. 255