For a man whose heyday was in the first part of the 20th century, we certainly know a lot about Fielding Yost, on and off the field.   His robust collection of personal letters were donated to U-M in the early 1970s.  We have countless photos of the Old Man and even a compilation how he looked since he arrived in Ann Arbor:


Have you ever heard his voice?  Ever wonder what he sounded like?   We know legendary radio voice Bob Ufer made famous Yost’s pronunciation of Meechigan. 

Well check this out.   As Yost was preparing to retire from U-M in 1940, he was honored with a nationwide radio presentation dubbed, ‘A Toast to Yost from Coast to Coast’.   John U. Bacon mentioned the tribute in Three and Out:  “..his admirers put on a tribute in his eponymous Field House, broadcast on NBC radio and titled “A Toast to Yost from Coast to Coast” (which was also the title of a popular song).”

The Bentley has the original recording of that tribute, choppy in spots, but well worth a listen if you have the means.   The highlight for me is certainly hearing the voice of the legendary Yost as he addresses the audience.   Here’s a small clip where Yost recaps his history of coaching then talks about when he stepped off the train in Ann Arbor for the first time:

You get a little taste of that Meechigan at about 14 seconds in.

There’s much more, even a speech from then-judge Willie Heston and a great story from the man who hired Yost, Charles Baird.  I’ll post a few more clips later on.

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  1. Please tell me there’s audio of this:

    ?”But do let me reiterate the spirit of Michigan. It is based on a deathless loyalty to Michigan and all her ways. An enthusiasm that makes it second nature for Michigan Men to spread the gospel of their university to the world’s distant outposts. And a conviction that nowhere is there a better university, in any way, than this Michigan of ours.”


  2. Hi Greg – In my vast “Yost Photo Collection” I have photos I can share from his playing days at West Virginia (1894-97) and Lafayette (played 1 game vs. Penn in 1896). Also as a Football Coach at Ohio Wesleyan (1897), Nebraska (1898), Kansas (1899), Stanford (1900) and San Jose State (1900). And as we all know, in 1901, he was hired by Charles Baird at Michigan serving as Head Football Coach (1901-1923 and 1925-1926) winning 6 National Championships and 10 Big Ten titles and as AD from 1921 to 1940 with his passing in 1946. I have photos from his West Virginia days to his 1946 Funeral and Casket being carried out of the Church by Oosterbaan, Goebel, Brown and others. One of the more interesting facts about Yost is that 64 of his former players and asst. coaches went on to become Head Coaches….and they say Coach Belichick has a big “coaching tree”.


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