Football News Headlines
NOTE: The intent of the News Section is not to dwell on negative stories that are more suited to be found in the Police and Crime Section of your local newspaper, but to report and document stories that cover the entire realm of The World of Football. Chances are, you may not have seen some of these stories before.
(Obituary) March 30, 2020 – Tim Petros, who was a running back in the CFL for seven seasons, dies at the age of 58. Petros played college football at the University of Calgary and won a Canadian College Football National Championship, known as the Vanier Cup, with Calgary in 1983. He was then selected in the fifth round of the 1983 CFL Draft by the Calgary Stampeders. Petros ran for a record 260 yards in the Vanier Cup and was named the game’s MVP. He played for the Stampeders from 1984-1990. After his playing career, Petros went to work in his family’s restaurant, which was located across the street from the Stampeders stadium. He opened his own pizza restaurant in 2013.
(Obituary) March 29, 2020 – Robert Garff, dies of the COVID-19 coronavirus at the age of 77. Garff was a Utah politician and served as speaker of the Utah House of Representatives from 1985-1987. He also ran a car dealership that his father founded in 1932. Garff was the owner of the Utah Blaze of the Arena Football league. The team played for seven seasons, from 2006-2008 and from 2010-2013.
(Obituary) March 29, 2020 – Jim Lambright, a former college football head coach, dies at the age of 77. Lambright played college football at Washington as a defensive end from 1962-1964. He became an assistant coach at the school in 1969 and was promoted to the Husky’s defensive coordinator in 1978. In 1991, the team shared the college football national championship with the Miami Hurricanes. In 1993, Lambright became the team’s head coach and remained head coach for six seasons from 1993-1998, posting a record of 44-25-1.
(Obituary) March 27, 2020 - Orlando McDaniel, who played briefly in the NFL as a wide receiver, dies of the COVID-19 virus at the age of 59. McDaniel played college football at LSU and was selected in the second round of the 1982 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. He only played in three game that season. He also ran track at LSU and founded the North Texas Cheetahs girls track club in Dallas.
(Obituary) March 25, 2020 – Terry Tausch, a guard and tackle in college and in the NFL, dies at the age of 61. Tausch played college football at Texas and was selected in the second round of the 1982 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings. He played for the Vikings from 1982-1988. His final season as a player was in 1989 with the San Francisco 49ers where he won a Super Bowl. Tausch was inducted into the University of Texas Athletics Hall of Honor in 2001.
(Obituary) March 24, 2020 – Mike Stratton, a linebacker in the American Football League and the NFL for 12 seasons, dies at the age of 78. Stratton played college football at Tennessee and was selected in the 13th round of the 1962 AFL Draft by the Buffalo Bills. He played in Buffalo from 1962-1972 and won two AFL titles in 1964 and 1965. He spent his final season as a player with the San Diego Chargers in 1973. Stratton was inducted into the Bill Wall of Fame in 1994.
(Obituary) March 23, 2020 – Walter Robb, dies at the age of 92 as a result of the COVID-19 coronavirus. Robb was an engineer and the former director of General Electric Co.'s Research and Development Center. After he retired, he bought a couple of minor league sports teams. He owned the Albany River Rats of the American Hockey League from 1998-2010 and the Albany Conquest of Arenafootball2 from 2005-2009. The Conquest changed their name to the Albany Firebirds for the 2009 season.
(Obituary) March 23, 2020 – Ron Marciniak, a longtime player scout in the NFL, dies at the age of 85. Marciniak played college football at Kansas State and as selected in the seventh round of the 1955 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins. He only played one season with the team but then went on to become a player scout for the Dallas Cowboys, Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens. He coined the phrase, “Play like a Raven,” which the team still uses today. Marciniak was also the head coach at Dayton from 1973-1976.
(Obituary March 22, 2020 – Woody Widenhofer, who coached in college, the NFL and the USFL, dies at the age of 77. Widehofer started out as an assistant defensive coach in college at Michigan State in 1969 and 1970. He also coached at Eastern Michigan and Minnesota before moving on to the NFL. He was a defensive assistant coach with the Pittsburgh Steelers for 11 seasons, from 1973-1983, and won four Super Bowls with the team. He then became the head coach of the Oklahoma Outlaws of the USFL in 1984. Widenhofer was also the head coach at Missouri from 1985-1988 before returning to the NFL as an assistant coach with the Detroit Lions and the Cleveland Browns. After that, he returned to the college ranks once again, where he was the head coach at Vanderbilt from 1997-2001. Widenhofer finished his coaching career as an assistant coach at Southeast Louisiana and at New Mexico State. He retired from coaching after the 2007 season.
(Obituary) March 19, 2020 – Benny Malone, a running back in the NFL for seven seasons, dies at the age of 68. Malone played college football at Arizona State and was selected in the second round of the 1974 NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins. He played in Miami from 1974-1978. He was then traded to the Washington Redskins, where he played in 1978 and 1979. After his playing career was over, he became a school teacher in Tempe, Arizona. Malone is a member of the Arizona State Athletic Hall of Fame as well as the Santa Cruz Valley Union High School Hall of Fame where he was a track star. His brother, Art Malone was also a running back at Arizona State and played seven seasons in the NFL for the Atlanta Falcons and the Philadelphia Eagles.
(Obituary) March 17, 2020 – Bill McPherson, a longtime assistant coach in college and in the NFL, dies at the age of 88. McPherson played defensive tackle in college at Santa Clara University. After serving in the Army, McPherson spent time as a college football assistant coach at Santa Clara as well as at UCLA. He began coaching in the NFL with the Philadelphia Eagles in 1978. He then became an assistant coach with the San Francisco 49ers from 1979-1998. He was a part of the 49ers five Super Bowl Championships. After his coaching career was over, he became a 49ers front office executive from 1999-2005. McPherson was inducted into Santa Clara's Athletic Hall of Fame as a player and a coach in 1984 and was also inducted into the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame's in 2005.
(Obituary) March 11, 2020 – Del Shofner, a defensive back and wide receiver in the NFL for 11 seasons, dies at the age of 85. Shofner played college football at Baylor and was named the MVP of the 1957 Sugar Bowl. He was the 11th overall pick in the 1957 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. He played for the Rams from 1957-1960. Shofner was then traded to the New York Giants and played in New York from 1961-1967. Shofner was the first player in NFL history to have two 1,000 yard receiving seasons, 1958 and 1961. He had a total of four 1,000 yard receiving seasons before he retired, three straight from 1961-1963. Shofner is a member of the Baylor Athletics Hall of Fame and the Southwest Conference Hall of Fame.
(Obituary) March 11, 2020 – Ken King, an NHL and CFL executive, dies of lung cancer at the age of 68. King was the president and CEO of the sports group that owns the NHL Calgary Flames since 2001 and later the CFL Calgary Stampeders as well. He was also the publisher of both Calgary daily newspapers, the Calgary Herald and the Calgary Sun.
(Obituary) February 27. 2020 – Gloster Richardson, a wide receiver and flanker in the AFL and the NFL, dies at the age of 77. Richardson played college football at Jackson State and was selected in the seventh round of the 1965 AFL Draft by the Kansas City Chiefs. He played for the team from 1967 to 1970. He also played for the Dallas Cowboys in 1971 and the Cleveland Browns from 1972-1974. It was Richardson who Hank Stram sent into the game with the “65 Toss Power Trap” play in Super Bowl IV. Richardson won a championship in Super Bowl IV with the Chiefs and and another in Super Bowl VI as a member of the Cowboys. After his playing career was over, Richardson was the wide receivers’ coach at Mississippi Valley State in 1983 and 1984 and coached future Hall of Famer, Jerry Rice.
(Obituary) February 25, 2020 – Bob Steiner, who was an offensive and defensive tackle in the Canadian Football League, dies at the age of 73. Steiner played in the Canadian Junior Football League for the Hamilton Hurricanes before signing with the CFL. He played for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats from 1966-1971 and for the Edmonton Eskimos in 1972. He won a Grey Cup championship with the Tiger-Cats in 1967. Steiner is also a member of the Hamilton Hurricanes Hall of Fame.
(Obituary) February 25, 2020 – Nesby Glasgow, a defensive back in the NFL for 14 seasons, die of cancer at the age of 62. Glasgow played college football at the University of Washington and was selected in the eighth round of the 1979 NFL Draft by the Baltimore Colts. He played for the Baltimore/Indianapolis Colts from 1979-1987 and was voted as the team’s Defensive Player of the Year in 1984. He finished his playing career with the Seattle Seahawks from 1988-1992. Glasgow was inducted into University of Washington’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2001.
(Obituary) February 20, 2020 – Dan Radakovich, an assistant coach in college and the NFL for 50 years, dies at the age of 84. Radakovich played center and linebacker in college at Penn State. He became an assistant coach with the Nittany Lions from 1957-1969. He was also an assistant coach with the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1970s and won two Super Bowls with the team. He also spent time as an assistant coach with the San Francisco 49ers, Los Angeles Rams, Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings, New York Jets, Cleveland Browns and in college at Cincinnati, North Carolina State and Colorado. Radakovich ended his coaching career back in college as the defensive coordinator at FCS Robert Morris University from 1996-2007.
(Obituary) February 13, 2020 – Chuck Shelton, a college football head coach for 19 years, dies at the age of 84. Shelton played college football at Division II Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kansas as a running back. He was the head coach at Drake University from 1977-1985. He then went on to be the head coach at Utah State from 1986-1991, where he was named the Big West Conference Co-Coach of the Year in 1991. Shelton was the also head coach at the University of the Pacific from 1992-1995. Shelton was inducted into the Missouri Sport Hall of Fame as a coach in 2006.
(Obituary) February 3, 2020 – Willie Wood, a Hall of Fame defensive back, dies at the age of 84. Wood played college football at USC. He was an undrafted free agent who played his entire 12-year NFL career with the Green Bay Packers from 1960-1971. He won five NFL titles during his career as well as the first two Super Bowls. After his playing career was over, he spent three seasons as an assistant defensive coach with the San Diego Chargers from 1972-1974. He then became the head coach of the Philadelphia Bell of the World Football League in 1975, making him the first black head coach in any pro football league since the 1920s. He was also an assistant coach with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League in 1979 and was also the team’s head coach in 1980 and 1981, making him the first black head coach in the CFL. Wood was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989 and is also a member of the Packers Hall of Fame.
(NFL) February 2, 2020 - The Kansas City Chiefs defeated the San Francisco 49ers 31-20 in Super Bowl LIV in Miami. It was the Chiefs' first Super Bowl title since 1970 when head coach Hank Stram and quarterback Len Dawson led the team to a win over the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV.
(Obituary) January 29, 2020 – Larry Eisenhour, a defensive end in the American Football League, dies at the age of 79. Eisenhour played college football at Boston College and was selected in the sixth round of the American Football League Draft in 1961. He played his entire nine-year career with the Boston Patriots from 1961-1969. Eisenhauer was named to the Patriots All-Decade team of the 1960s. He was also inducted into the Boston College Varsity Club Athletic Hall of Fame in 1978.
(Obituary) January 28, 2020 – Chris Doleman, a Hall of Fame defensive end in the NFL for 15 seasons, dies of cancer at the age of 58. Doleman played college football at the University of Pittsburgh and was selected with the fourth overall pick in the 1985 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings. He played in Minnesota for nine seasons, from 1985-1993. He then played for the Atlanta Falcons in 1994 and 1995 and for the San Francisco 49ers from 1996-1998. He returned to the Vikings to play his final season in 1999 at the age of 38. Doleman was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2012 and is also a member of the Vikings Ring of Honor.
(Obituary) January 19, 2020 – Danny Talbott, who played professional baseball and football, dies at the age of 75. Talbott played college football at the University of North Carolina. He was named ACC Player of the Year in football in 1965 and ACC Athlete of the Year in 1966. Talbott was also named Most Valuable Player in the 1966 East-West Shrine Game. He even helped lead the school’s baseball team to a College World Series appearance in 1966. Talbott was selected in the 17th round of the 1967 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers, but he opted to try pro baseball first. He played one year of minor league baseball in Miami with a Baltimore Orioles' farm team. Talbott then signed with the Washington Redskins and was a backup quarterback for three seasons. Talbott was inducted in the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame in 2003.
(Obituary) January 18, 2020 – Norm Hill, a player in the Canadian Football League for seven seasons, dies at the age of 91. Hill played college football at the University of Manitoba. He was an end for the Calgary Stampeders from 1948-1950 and was a member of the 1948 undefeated Grey Cup championship team. He will be remembered for his part in one of the greatest plays in Grey Cup history. When Calgary quarterback Keith Spaith threw a completed pass to Woody Strode on one side of the field, Hill flopped on the ground and stayed there unnoticed on the other side of the field. When the ball was snapped on the next play, he got up, sprinted downfield, caught a pass and scored the Stampeders’ first touchdown of the game. Calgary went on to beat the Ottawa Rough Riders 12-7 and capped off a 15-0 season. He went on to play for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers from 1951-1953 and returned to play one final season in Calgary in 1954. After his playing career was over, Hill became a medical researcher and a neurosurgeon.
(College/FBS) January 13, 2020 - The LSU Tigers defeated the Clemson Tigers 42-25 in the National Championship Game. LSU finished the season 15-0.
(College/FCS) January 11, 2020 - The North Dakota State Bison defeated the James Madison Dukes 28-20 in the Football Championship Subdivision title game played in Frisco, Texas. It was the eighth FCS title for the Bison in the last nine years. NDSU finished the season with a 16-0 record, the first at any college level since Yale did it in 1894.
(Obituary) January 7, 2020 – George Perles, a college football head coach for 12 seasons, dies at the age of 85. Perles played college football for one season at Michigan State before a knee injury ended his playing career. He then became a student assistant coach at the school. Perles spent 11 seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers as a defensive line coach, defensive coordinator and eventually an assistant head coach, helping lead the team to 4 Super Bowl victories in the 1970s. He returned to MSU and was the head coach of the Spartans from 1983-1994, winning two Big Ten titles and a win over USC in the 1988 Rose Bowl. He also became the school’s athletic director in 1990. Perles was let go during the 1994 season. An NCAA investigation forced MSU to forfeit the 11 games that he had coach that season due to an academic cheating scandal. Perles himself was not accused of any wrong doing. In 2006, Perles was elected to the school’s Board of Trustees and remained on the board through 2018.
(Obituary) January 2, 2020 – Houston Hogg, one of the first African-Americans to break the color barrier in the Southeastern Conference, dies at the age of 71. Hogg played college football at Kentucky from 1967-1970. He was a running back and lettered on the football team in 1969 and 1970. The university unveiled a statue of Hogg and three of his team mates in September 2016 at Kroger Field. The school named Hogg an honorary captain for the 2019 season opener against Toledo and recognized him on the field during the game for his role in integrating the SEC.
(Obituary) January 2, 2020 – Sam Wyche, a head coach in the NFL for 12 years, dies at the age of 74. Wyche played college football at Furman. He signed with the Cincinnati Bengals in 1968 and played quarterback for three seasons through 1970. He then played for the Washington Redskins in 1971 and 1972, the Detroit Lions in 1973 and the St. Louis Cardinals in 1976. Wyche then went into coaching. He started out as the quarterback’s coach of the San Francisco 49ers from 1979-1982 before becoming a college football head coach at Indiana in 1983. He went on to be the head coach of the Bengals from 1984-1991, leading the team to an appearance in Super Bowl XXIII. He was also the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 1992-1995. His last NFL job was with the Buffalo Bills in 2004 and 2005 as the team’s quarterback’s coach. After that, Wyche became a teacher and was an assistant football coach at Pickens High School in South Carolina through 2018.
(Obituary) January 1, 2020 – Les Josephson, a running back in the NFL for 11 seasons, dies at the age of 77. Josephson played college football at Division II Augustana College. He signed as a free agent with the Dallas Cowboys in 1964, but was traded to the Los Angeles Rams during training camp. He played for the Rams from 1964-1974. His nickname was the “Blonde Bull” because of his blonde hair and his hard-running style. After his playing career was over, he became a sportscaster and actor. Josephson was Warren Beatty’s double as the LA Rams quarterback in the 1978 movie, “Heaven Can Wait.” He was also a technical consultant on the 1976 Disney movie, “Gus” and appeared in an episode of the TV show, “Police Woman.” Josephson also spent 20 years as a college football radio color analyst for the Arizona Wildcats.
(Obituary) January 1, 2020 – Doug Hart, a cornerback in the NFL for eight seasons, dies at the age of 80. Hart played college football at Texas Arlington and signed with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1963 as a rookie free agent. However, he was cut by the Cardinals in training camp and then signed with the Green Bay Packers. He spent the 1963 season on the Packers’ taxi squad, which is today known as the practice squad. Hart played for the Packers from 1964-1971 and won three straight NFL titles as well as Super Bowls I and II.