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Original Member of 49ers Passes Away


Bob Titchenal, one of the first members of the 49ers inaugural 1946 team passed away in Santa Rosa on Sunday at the age of 91.

Titchenal was the former head football coach at New Mexico State from 1953-1955 and also at his alma mater, San Jose State from 1957-1964.

He was a football and basketball star at San Jose State earning varsity letter awards from 1937-'39. On the football field, Titchenal was a 6-foot-2, 190-pound center. He helped the Spartans compile a 35-3-2 record in his three seasons on campus. In Titchenal's senior campaign, he was an honorable mention All-America player, serving as the captain of the 1939 team that finished 13-0.

After his Spartans career, Titchenal played professionally in the NFL as a center and end for the Washington Redskins (1940-42). Titchenal's best season was in 1942 when he played on a Redskins' team that played in the NFL Championship game and he was named to the Pro Bowl.

Titchenal put a halt to his football career to serve in the Navy during World War II as a lieutenant.

Following his Navy stint, Titchenal played for the first 49ers team in 1946 as part of the All-America Football Conference. The following season, Titchenal played for the Los Angeles Dons of the AAFC.

One year later, Titchenal began his coaching career at West Virginia as an assistant to head coach Dudley DeGroot, who was his college coach at San Jose State. Later, Titchenal worked as an assistant coach at New Mexico (1949-50) and Denver University (1951-52). Prior to returning to his alma mater, Titchenal served as New Mexico's head coach for three seasons (1953-55).

In eight seasons at San Jose State, Titchenal compiled a 33-54-1 win-loss record. Titchenal also coached Super Bowl-winning coach Dick Vermeil, who was the quarterback on the 1957 Spartans team. Overall, Titchenal's record as a college football head coach was 45-61-2.

Former legendary 49ers head coach and Spartans alum, the late Bill Walsh (1931-2007), assisted Titchenal's first year as head coach at San Jose State.

Titchenal is survived by his wife, Barbara; three sons, Gary, Alan, and Robbie; and three grandchildren, Michael, Christy and Matthew, survive Mr. Titchenal.

A memorial service for Titchenal is planned; details will be announced in the near future.

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