Click to Stop Background Music! Utilities Window: Current calendar and time, guide, music selector, etc.

Heritage \ Sports \

The Bay City All-Stars "Semi-Pro" Football Team.
Member of the Southern Michigan Football League.

- Members of the First All-Stars Team -

{View} Names listing.

The Bay City All-Stars football team came into existence in time for the 1948 season, and was instrumental in the creation of the Southern Michigan Football league. which was comprised of the following teams: Bay City All-Stars, Dearborn All-Stars, Mt. Clemens Jugs, Monroe Athletic Club, Detroit Northwest Athletic Club and Oakwood Blue Jackets.

Frank Koppelberger, the Founder.


1949: Frank Koppelberger and
wife, Maryanne at game.

None of this would have happened if it had not been for Frank L. Koppelberger, who founded the Bay City All-Stars, and in doing so, the Southern Michigan Football League. Koppelberger covered the initial costs to get the team up and running which saved a considerable amount of time in getting the team up and running. He was convinced that once the community experienced the higher level of play of semi-pro football, they would rally to the support the new team. Koppelberge made it known upfront that he was not interested in deriving a profit from the team, any profit would go to the players.

Frank Koppelberger was not a very wealthy man, he had a good job as office manager at the former Prestolite Company at the end of Morton Street, at a time it was known as the Auto Lite Company. So his decision to underwrite the initial costs of a new semi-pro football team was not without some personal financial sacrifice. He only interest was to bring quality semipro football to Bay City.

That was made clear in the team’s game program which stated:

“The sponsor wanted no money-making promotion. His assistance was rendered only on the basis that ‘if any profit is derived by the All-Stars football team, such profit, after the original investment is returned to the sponsor, shall be distributed among the players.”

Organizing and the Control Board.

It was on Saturday, January 17, 1948, that Koppelberger publicly announced he was forming a local semi-pro football team, which would be led by Lee DeLorge, business manager and coached by Howard “Whitey” Ricker. A Board of Control was established to help organize the team, establish rules, oversee the operations of the new team.


Sitting: Arthur Pasant, Howard Ricker (coach), Harry Rose.
Standing: Lee DeLorge (bus. mgr.), Herman Wolf, Bob Anderson, Barney Glowicki, Frank Koppelberger (sponsor).

Setting Up a League.

In March, 1948 an initial meeting was held at the Wenonah Hotel in Bay City among cities with a potential interest in forming a semi-pro football league. Those present came from

Pontiac, Windsor, Dearborn, Coldwater, Oakwood and the U.S. Marine Reserves.

Two other teams, Mt. Clements and Monroe indicated they had an interest but couldn’t be present for the meeting.

At this meeting led by Howard “Whitey” Ricker, discussions focused on the essential ground work that would be required to organize a new league.

After three more meetings, the ingredients for a new league were laid out. The league would be comprised of eight teams -- Bay City, Monroe, Detroit, Mt. Clements, Oakwood, Dearborn and the Saginaw Valley, which was formed by former on the Bay City Blazers, Saginaw Giants and Flint Blue Devils. Elected officers of the new leaguer were:

President - Robert Parsaco, director of athletics at Southern Michigan Prison; Secretary/Treasurer - Jack Scagnnetti, who also handled promotions of the league; and League Commission - Camp Wilson, former star with the Detroit Lions football team.

League play would begin that year.

Season Play.


Team Practice (1948)

The early home games of the All-Stars were played at St. Joseph field. By 1951 they were splitting their home games between Central High school’s stadium (five games) and Handy High’s field (three games).

Practices were held at whatever field was available to them. This included St. Joseph field, St. Marys fields or the field on the south side of Central High.


Team Practice at field behind Central High.

The team played thirteen games during its maiden season losing only two of them. Their first loss was their first game, which was an exhibition game played against the Chicago Hornets professional team. The other loss was against Jackson Metro All-Stars, a team they defeated earlier that year by a score of 32-15. The team proved to be very tough in competition against other semi-pro teams, defeating:

Easton Rapids’ Lions, 50-0; Detroit Northwest AC, 53-0; Detroit Golden Bears, 60-0; Jerry Lynch All-Stars, 34-0 and the Dearborn All-Stars, 60-0. The All-Stars final game was a 7-0 victory over their inter-city rivals, the Bay City Blazers.

The only history found on the 1949 season was in a game brochure from 1950 which stated they won six of their eight league games in 1949. It is likely that they also played additional games against non-league teams, but none were mentioned.

1950 League Championship.
Sitting to left is Coach Whitey Ricker and to right is player Barney Glowicki. Standing are players Dan Skrzypczak, George Nickel, Don (Zeke) Glowicki and Jerry Cabbage.

The game program of September 9, 1950, their first game was against the Selfridge Field Flyers. The schedule shown in the program for this game lists the following games:

Oakwood Blue Jackets, Windsor Bulldogs, Monroe A.C., Dearborn All-Stars, Detroit Nortwest A.C., Saginaw Valley Rockets, Mt. Clcments Jugs, Coldwater and Jackson All-Stars.

In addition the schedule had one open date and another one that noted a tentative game against the Detroit Lions. One of the game programs from 1951 states they did play the Lions, but only in the first and third quarter of game, noting they were able to score 7 points against the state’s highly thought of professional team.

In 1951 the team moved their home field from St. Joseph in favor of Central’s stadium and Handy’ football field. The scheduled called for five games at Central, three games at Handy and three away games. Teams on the schedule were

Oakwood Blue Jackets (two games), Detroit Grey Stars, Richmond Eagles, Windsor Bull Dogs, Monroe Athletic Club, Dearborn All-Stars, Mt. Clements, Jackson Prision and Carbon A.C.

The Opponents.

While most the All-Star games were against other teams in the Southern Michigan Football League, they also play many teams outside of their league as well. The following are some known histories of the teams the All-Stars played over the years.

Team Game Stats (not complete)
Versus (win-loss)1948194919501951
Bay City Blazers7-0---------
Chicago Hornet (pro-ex.)---2-48------
Coldwater Comets------25-6---
Dearborn All-Stars6-720-613-042-0
Detroit Farewell A.C.---------42-0
Detroit Gray Stars---------27-0
Detroit Golden Bears---60-0------
Detroit Northwest A.C.---53-012-0---
Detroit Tars---------7-19
Eaton Rapids Lions---50-0------
Highland Park Bears6-19---------
Jackson Metro All-Stars---18-12
0-6
------
Jerry Lynch All-Stars---34-0------
Mt. Clements Jugs------24-12---
Monroe A.C.---------45-0
Oakwood Bull Dogs------32-031-0
39-6
Richmond Eagles------35-645-13
Rossford, Ohio---------64-0
Saginaw Valley Blue Devils------40-0---
Selfridge All-Stars------38-0---
Tecumseh Braves------58-0---
Windsor Bull Dogs---------33-7

Detroit Farewell A.C.
This Detroit contingent played in the Detroit Class A Recreational League. The team came together around 1955 as a neighborhood club playing on privately owned property, which they later inherited from the Farewell Estate, when the owner died. Grateful, they added "Farewell" to their team name and their home field. John Tischuck has coached the team from the beginning.

Jackson Metro All-Stars:
The Metros All-Stars were formed in 1947 by a small group consisting of William Morris (president), Walter Zimonja (vice-president), Louis Glick (tresurer) and John Panco (secretary). The team's coach was Fortune Sullo. The club is a member in the Michigan Independent Football League.

Oakwood Blue Jackets
A league member, the Blue Jackets hailed from Oakwood, MI, and was one of the older semi-pro teams having been formed in the 1930s. The teams in 1937, 1941 and 1942 were Detroit area champions. The team was part of a group with membership of 1,000 and this group supported other sports activities in addition to football.

Petrolia Hard Oils
The Hard Oils, a non-league member, come from a small town in the Western Ontario area of Canada. The team's football history was 63 years old at the time they played the All-Stars. Their games during the 1920s and 30s against Sarnia were legendary because of their rioting fans. The nickname, Hard Oils, came from a time when Petrolia was part of Canada's largest oil producing area. The Hards Oil played in an Ontario league. The team's coached was Stan Reeve, who played in the Sarnia League during the 1920-30s. Team captain was Home Cote, a graduate of St. Patrick's High and Sarnia College Institute, both in Sarnia.

Richmond Eagles
The Eagles of Richmond, MI, along with the Detroit Tars, were the two oldest semi-pro football teams at this time. Coach of the Eagles was Jack Fenton, a College All-Star playing for Michigan State Colleges. Bud Teska was the team captain, a former All-Stater from Detroit.

Saginaw Valley Blue Devils
The Blue Devils, a league member, was put together from players of the Bay City Blazers, Saginaw Giants and Flint Blue Devils. Most the players were from Flint, which is where they held their practices. The team was formed for the 1950 season.

Windsor Bull Dogs
The Bull Dogs were from Ontario, Canada and was one of tougher teams in the league. Many of their non-league games were against teams in Canada's top semi-pro league, the Canadian Imperial Football League.

Original Members of All-Stars Booster Club.

Commodore Chop House
H. Hirshfield Sons
Boettcher Tool & Die
Lowery Co.
Goodeyne Sport Shop
Fitzhugh Motor Sales
Lewis LEVISON
Maynard SMITH
Woodcraft Corp.
DeGrace Cleaners
Leinberger Dairy
Aetna Cement Co.
Sears-Roebuck Co.
Fletcher Oil Co.
Robt. Gage Coal Co.
Valley Welding Co.
Jennison Hardware Co.
Kroger Grocery Co.
K-R Heating Co.
Brezo-s Tool & Die
Alvin H. WEBER
World's Star Mills Store
Fred HEWITT
Dr. W.G. GAMBLE, Jr
List Grocery
Phoenix Brewery
National Bank
Arnold's Bakery
LaRoach Heating
Robert DAROW
Smith Luggage
Lodewyk Insurance
Max RIENBENACK III
May Clothing
Trahan's Chapel
Elliot Insurance
Jerry STANELY
Emmons RIEGEL
Carl FRAMER
Joseph MACKAY
St. Mary's A.C.
R.P. Lewis Co.
Surath & Sons
Russell COLLANDER
Bay Electric Wholesale
Dr. D.J. MOSIER
C.E. Rosenbury & Co.
Paul WENDLAND
Rackstraw Fish Co.
Kirchman Bros.
Mrs. T.E.SMITH
H.E. GREENWALD
C. & J. Gregory Co.
Industrial Supply
Jack's Hi-Speed
Walt & Stan
Don HAWKINS
Ray UTTER
Rechlin Hardware
Dilas-Johnroe
John R. THOMSON
Percy LEVINSON
Heglund-Beyer
Irwin SCHILLER
Clark's Sportswear
Harry BUSH
Oscar BAKER, Jr.
J.F. BROMFIELD
Emery JONAS
Robert BRITTON
Jack HAYWARD
Duch BRENNAN
Louis Eager Service
Artic Ice & Fuel
Betty HUGHES
Frank MOORE
William KAISER
Arnold GYSLER
Sandy DEGRIEF
Callahan Papper Supply
Bay City Hardware
Ed WENDT
R.M. Shear Tool & Gage
Cliff BOYLE
Glenn BAKER
John BOURNE
Cook Paint Store
Leo D. GOODEYNE
Leo GIFFLE
Chevrier Supply Co.
W.J.S. HICKS
Romaine STACKOWICK
Bessie JONES
Popular Inn
Washington Recreation
Frankenmuth Brewing Co.
McCarthy & Touse
L.E. Oppenheim & Co.
Schindler Tire Service
Clapp Bros.
Arenac Mfg. Co.
Smith Engraving
Whyte Motor Sales
Miller Drug Store
Layerer's Drug
Oasis Tavern
Auggies Bar
Shirley SMITH
Latham Furniture
Blanchard Refridgeration
Sy SMIGEL
Tommy's Tire Shop
Frank POCKRANDT
Al Goulet's Market
Sykes LAPRARIE
Elmer REINHARDT
Graebner Radio
Thomas Motor Sales
Sauve Coal Co.
Virgil SCHROEDER
Jack DALRYMPLE
Bay City Cash
Peoples Commercial Bank
Washington Theatre
Allman's Shoes
Consolidated Freight
Buda Sound Service
Hudson's Laundry
Robert BECKETT Sr.
John's Bar B-Q
Herman HOHMAN
Town Tavern
Doc's Tavern
Barber's Grocery
Bay City Bank
Union Store
The Green Hut
Charles ENGLEHARDT
Balcer Bros.
Barney BALCER
Harold KRAPHOL
Ray PRZBYLSKI
Ford MERRITT
Mendal FAIR
Gene WOODWARD
Earl SMITH
Gloria HATCHEL
Floyd DUCHAINE
John DUCHAINE
Helen REDMOND
Steve LEWICKI
Elmer JOHNSON
John LEE
Cliff LEFLER
Julie BOLEY
Clarence MATUREN
Gerry WEJROWSKI
Earl CLARK
Harry SMEETH
Margaret WINTERS
William DANA
Emily REARDON
Bay City Dairy

All-Stars Disband.

After four seasons of providing the Bay City area with "top notch" football as promised in the beginning, the All-Stars team disbanded at the end of the 1951 season. While the All-Stars were at or near the top of the league in each of the years they played, attendance at games began to dwindle, and the time arrived wheen revenue was no longer sufficient to cover expenses.

Nov. 13, 1980: Team Reunion at KC Hall
1st row
Abe VanGaul, Barney Glowicki, Earl Northrup, Jim Butler, Jerry Rose, Ed Gledhill, Whitey Ricker (coach), Ed Pasant.
2nd row
Pat Niegartr, Bob Behrman, Dan Skrzypczak, Don Earl, Bob Heinz, Bob LaRoche, R.J. Sabourin, Lee Delorge (bus. mgr.)
3rd row:
Jack Me, Andy Wendland, Bill Grell, Herman Wolf, Jerry Dalrymple, Barney Gang.

More Recent Times.

The Bay City Times featured the All-Stars in article, "All-Stars football team couldn't lose.", which was published on Sunday, June 20, 1999. The following are some excerpts from that article.

In the "winner-take all" game played against the Bay City Blazers on December 4, 1948,


"The All-Stars defeated the Bay City Blazers 7-0 on a 12-yard touchdown toss from Leo Sheltraw to halfback Bobby Heinz. Barney Glowicki booted the third-quarter exclamation point to conclude a highly successful 10-2 season."

Comments by Don Felske recalling that game as a player on the Blazers' team,
"The stadium was packed - a full house." After the Blazers folded in 1948, Don joined up with the All-Star team.

"The All-Stars collected $5,854 for the victory and bragging rights, which continued five decades later."

Comment on coach Whitey Ricker by Dan Skrzypczak, "Whitey was a very, very good coach. Tri it again, try it again. He said that all the time."

Players comments about attendance, "Attendance at games varied because fans often thought the oponents were patsies." Bobby Heintz's opinion, "They had teams we were suppose to play that they said were undefeated. They'd come in here and put the big show on and catch a pass with one hand and all that. But by the time the game was over, we had won 66-0."

Football Database.

On another page is a database of individual football players, which includes players from the All-Stars and Blazer teams. Football Players Database.

Please contact us if you can add to the history of the Bay City All-Stars.

Sources.
  • Partial collection of game programs from 1948, 49, 50 and 51, provided by Barney Glowicki, former player.
  • Bay City Times newspaper micro-films from The Bay County Library.
  • City directoris from the Bay County Historical Society.
  • Bay County Past & Present, book by Leslie Arndt.
  • ALL-STAR IMAGES
    Owner

    Frank Koppelberger
    Business Mgr.
    Lee DeLorge
    Team Doctors

    Dr. M.J. Dardas


    Dr. Neal Moore


    Dr. S.M. Pearson
    Equipment Mgr.
    Bud Cunningham
    (Click below images to enlarge.)

    PROGRAM COVERS


    Petrolia Hard Oils
    Sept. 1, 1948



    Selfridge Field Flyers
    Sept. 9, 1950



    Saginaw Valley
    Blue Devils
    Sept. 23, 1950



    Detroit Penquins
    Nov. 23, 1950



    Oakwood Blue Jackets
    Sept. 8, 1951



    Richmond Eagles
    Sept. 22, 1951



    Detroit Tars
    Nov. 22, 1951


    Dr. Neal Moore

    with players

    Dan Skrzypczak
    Geo. Nickel
    Jim Butler
    Cheer Leaders

    Sherry Wilson
    Lois Berthume
    Nan Kooman
    Carole Chosay
    Shirley Cardinal
    Nance Buckler
    Team Photographer

    Albert Klass
    MI Semi-Pro Teams
    Livonia] Detroit Downriver Diesels
    [Flint] Michigan Admiral
    [Monroe] Southern Michigan Timberwolves
    [Detroit] Michigan Renegades
    [Auburn Hills] Auburn Hills Makos
    HISTORY: Help Us If You Can - Contribute Content to Bay-Journal.