Ex-Michigan, CFL linebacker Craig Roh dies at 33

Craig Roh, a four-year starter on the defensive line at Michigan from 2009-12, has died at age 33 from colon cancer.

His wife, Chelsea Roh, announced his death on Wednesday on social media. The Rohs have a 2-year-old son, Max.

“Craig was the most driven/disciplined person I have ever met,” Chelsea Roh wrote on Instagram. “He gave 10000% into everything he did, including being a wonderful husband/father. Driving away from our first date, I knew in that moment that my life was changed forever. … Even though he left the world at only 33, Craig lived an amazingly full life. I’m not sure how I’m going to live the rest of my days without him, but I will put one foot in front of the other for our beautiful little boy.”

According to a GoFundMe page set up to pay for medical expenses and Max’s education, Roh was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer in August 2022.

“Craig did not want to go public with his diagnosis and battle because, in true Craig fashion, he did not want the attention to be on him,” the fundraiser page reads. “From chemo, to targeted therapy, to clinical trials at MD Anderson (in Houston) and in Honduras, Craig was resilient till the very end.”

Roh started a program-record 51 straight games at Michigan after twice being named Gatorade Player of the Year in his native Arizona. He later spent one season with the Carolina Panthers and five in the Canadian Football League, where he won the Grey Cup with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2019.

The Rohs moved to Austin, Texas, where Craig Roh worked at tech startups and also started an online business teaching the techniques of coaching defensive lines.

“I am saddened to hear about the passing of former defensive end Craig Roh, our program’s all-time leader in career starts,” new Michigan football coach Sherrone Moore posted to social media. “My heart goes out to his family during this difficult time. The entire Roh family is in my thoughts and prayers and we hope for peace and comfort for all who knew this great Wolverine.”