Knute Rockne

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Profile

His autograph is as legendary as the man himself. Highly desired in any form, Knute Rockne's signature is extremely rare. Rockne was an obliging signer in person but, at the time, collecting was not popular. Most commonly seen are signed letters on Notre Dame letterhead, written while he was the head coach for the Irish. His signature can be found in two forms, "KK Rockne" and "Knute Rockne." Some of the more unique signed items of Rockne are the 1928 All American Certificates, which are signed not only by Rockne but by Tad Jones and Glenn "Pop" Warner.

Difficult, though not impossible to find, are signed and personalized photos and cut signatures. Rockne's iconic status makes his autograph one of the most important of any college athlete or coach. Rockne died in 1931 at the age of 43.

Subject Profile

Knute Kenneth Rockne (born Knut Larsen Rokne) (1888-1931) is perhaps the greatest if not the most legendary college head football coaches in the history of the game. Despite the limited amount that Rockne actually played, his innovation, intelligence, understanding and knowledge of football helped him redefine how the game was and is played today. After graduated from Notre Dame in 1914, he became the head coach of the Fighting Irish in 1918 where he remained until his death in 1931. Rockne introduced the “shift”, realigning the backfield for more effective results, and utilized the forward pass to open up his offense in a time when rushing was the norm of the era. Knute’s magnetic personality and extraordinary success made him the coach to play for in the 1920s, and drew recruits such as George Gipp, Rip Miller, Hunk Anderson and Notre Dame’s legendary “Four Horsemen – Harry Stuhldreher, Jim Crowley, Don Miller and Elmer Layden. During his 13-year as head coach of the Irish, Rockne compiled a 105-12-5 record. He led Notre Dame to five undefeated seasons and five National Championships (1919-1920, 1924, 1929-1930). Knute Rockne was tragically killed March of 1931 in a plane crash in Kansas after visiting his sons at Pembroke-Country Day School in Bazaar, Kansas. Knute Rockne was an inaugural inductee to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1951.