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Greatest Kansas Football Players of All-Time Bracket: Mike McCormack vs Fred Hageman

(3) McCormack vs (14) Hageman

Carolina Panthers v San Francisco 49ers Photo by George Rose/Getty Images

McCormack held off fan-favorite Gilbert Brown by a 7-2 count to make the field, while Hageman took over the 14-seed with a 7-1 knockout of Hal Cleavinger.

(3) Mike McCormack

Oh my gosh, where to start. In a sentence, McCormack leveraged an amazing college career into an 8-year professional playing career, a long coaching career, and eventually a GM job in the NFL.

Mike played offensive line for the Jayhawks from 1948-50. While at Kansas, McCormack became first team All-Conference in his senior season. He would be taken #34 overall in the 1951 NFL Draft.

He is widely regarded as one of the best offensive linemen ever to play in the NFL. After his playing career, he spent 17 years as a head coach in the NFL with various franschises: the Eagles, Colts, and Seahawks, as well as several stints as an assistant.

McCormack was instrumental in founding the Carolina Panthers, and served as their GM from their founding in 1993 until 1997.

Mike is in the Ring of Honor at KU's Memorial Stadium, has a statue at Carolina's stadium, and was called by legendary Browns owner Paul Brown "... the finest offensive tackle who ever played pro football." He was the second Jayhawk to be enshrined in Pro Football's Hall of Fame, an honor he achieved in 1984.

(14) Fred Hageman

Hageman played for the Jayhawks from 1956-60. Fred played both C and MLB. He became a two-time first team All-Conference player at Center his junior and senior years, and was a leader on arguably the best team in KU football history.

He was drafted 96th overall in the 1961 NFL Draft. He spent five seasons as a linebacker in the NFL, the first four with the Redskins. Prior to his final season, he was traded to the Bears but got injured in a preseason game. At this point Hageman retired from football and pursued an ultimately successful business career after earning his master's degree at KU in Education.


Who was the greater Jayhawk? Log your vote in the comments. Check out the other matchups here.