Hall of Fame - Inductee Detail

John "Big John" Ferraro

John "Big John" Ferraro


  • Position: Tackle
  • School: Southern California
  • High School: Los Angeles, CA (Bell HS)
  • Years: 1943-1944, 1946-1947
  • Inducted: 1974
  • Place of Birth: Cudahy, CA
  • Date of Birth: May 14, 1924
  • Place of Death: Los Angeles, CA
  • Date of Death: Apr 17, 2001
  • Jersey Number: 71
  • Height: 6-4
  • Weight: 245

Member Biography

Destined to become Police Commissioner for the city of Los Angeles, California; John Ferraro started working in the enforcement business as a two-time All-America tackle at the University of Southern California. In his 1943 freshman season, the Trojans finished at 8-2 including a 29-0 Rose Bowl victory over Washington. During his sophomore season, Ferraro gained All-America status. That season, Southern Cal posted an 8-0-2 record, repeated as Pacific Coast Conference champs and registered another shut out in the Rose Bowl, defeating Tennessee 25-0. In 1945 Ferraro served as an ensign in the U.S. Navy. When he returned to Southern Cal in 1946, a back injury hampered his play. Even so he was still selected to the All-Coast team and received second team All-America recognition. Fully healed in 1947, he made first team All-America receiving the following laurels from Braven Dyer of the Los Angeles Times, "If any tackle played better than John Ferraro, he must be Superman and Hercules rolled into one." The Trojans finished the season 7- 2-1 and returned to the Rose Bowl. After his playing days Ferraro served as Los Angeles Police Commissioner and City Councilman. In 1973, he received the NCAA Silver Anniversary Award, given to career achievement. Ferraro was born May 14, 1924 in Cudahy, California. He died April 17, 2001, in Los Angeles.