Hall of Fame - Inductee Detail

Vic Janowicz

Vic Janowicz


  • Position: Halfback
  • School: Ohio State
  • High School: Elyria, OH (Elyria HS)
  • Years: 1949-1951
  • Inducted: 1976
  • Place of Birth: Elyria, OH
  • Date of Birth: Feb 26, 1930
  • Place of Death: Columbus, OH
  • Date of Death: Feb 27, 1996
  • Jersey Number: 31
  • Height: 5-9
  • Weight: 185

Member Biography

Victor Janowicz was one of the greatest all-around stars in the history of football. He was a sophomore on the 1949 Ohio State team and played defensive back. In the Rose Bowl, January 2, 1950, he intercepted two passes, ran one back 41 yards, and helped Ohio State beat California 17-14. In 1950 he played both offense and defense, averaging 50 minutes a game. Wes Fesler, one of the last coaches to use the single- wing formation, put Janowicz at tailback, where he ran, passed, punted, blocked, and place-kicked. Janowicz threw four touchdown passes in a 41-7 victory over Pittsburgh. He made a 90-yard punt in a 48-0 victory over Minnesota. When the Buckeyes beat Iowa 83-21, Janowicz was responsible for 46 points. He ran for two touchdowns (one a 61-yard punt return), passed for four touchdowns, and kicked 10 extra points. He was unanimous All-America halfback and received the Heisman Trophy as the nation's best player. In 1951, Ohio State's new coach, Woody Hayes, installed the T formation, and Janowicz did not repeat as an All-America player. He kicked field goals that were the winning plays in victories over Northwestern 3-0 and Pittsburgh 16-14. Janowicz was in two post-season games, the East-West Shrine and the Hula Bowl. He won the Most Valuable Player Trophy in both. Janowicz played 81 games in major league baseball with the Pittsburgh Pirates 1953-54 and was with the Washington Redskins in the National Football League 1954-55. Injuries in an auto accident ended his athletic career. He became a businessman in Columbus, Ohio, a broadcaster, and a public speaker. His home town, Elyria, Ohio, named a baseball stadium in his honor. He became administrative assistant to the state auditor of Ohio, and in 1992 was honored at a banquet as "Ohio State's Greatest Athlete of the Last 50 Years. He was born February 26, 1930, in Elyria, Ohio; he died February 27, 1996.