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Lance Alworth

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Title: Lance Alworth  
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Subject: Super Bowl VI, San Diego Chargers, List of National Football League records (individual), 1961 Cotton Bowl Classic, John Hadl
Collection: 1940 Births, American Football League All-Star Players, American Football League All-Time Team, American Football League Champions, American Football League Most Valuable Players, American Football Wide Receivers, Arkansas Razorbacks Football Players, College Football Hall of Fame Inductees, Dallas Cowboys Players, Living People, National Football League Players with Retired Numbers, People from Brookhaven, Mississippi, Pro Football Hall of Fame Inductees, San Diego Chargers (Afl) Players, San Diego Chargers Players, Sportspeople from Houston, Texas, Super Bowl Champions
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Lance Alworth

Lance Alworth
No. 24, 19
Position: Wide receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: (1940-08-03) August 3, 1940
Place of birth: Houston, Texas
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight: 184 lb (83 kg)
Career information
College: Arkansas
NFL draft: 1962 / Round: 1 / Pick: 8
AFL draft: 1962 / Round: 2 / Pick: 9
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Receptions: 542
Receiving yards: 10,266
Touchdowns: 85
Rushing yards: 129
Rush attempts: 24
Games played: 110
Stats at pro-football-reference.com
Pro Football Hall of Fame
College Football Hall of Fame

Lance Dwight Alworth (born August 3, 1940) is a former American football wide receiver. He is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He retired as a player after the 1972 season.

Contents

  • Early life 1
  • College career 2
  • San Diego Chargers 3
  • Dallas Cowboys 4
  • Legacy 5
    • AFL-NFL records 5.1
  • Personal life 6
  • See also 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9

Early life

Born in Houston, Alworth was raised in Brookhaven, Mississippi, where he played football at Brookhaven High School before attending the University of Arkansas.[1][2] While in high school, he earned 15 letters.[2] Alworth's sister Ann was fast enough in the 50- and 75-yard dashes in track to be invited to the Olympic Games trials, though she declined the invitation.[2] After high school, Alworth was offered contracts by New York Yankees and the Pittsburgh Pirates.[2]

College career

At Arkansas, the six-foot (1.83 m), 180-pound (82 kg) Alworth was a flanker[2] who led all colleges in punt return yardage in 1960 and 1961. He also was a track star, running the 100 and 200-yard dashes (in 9.6 seconds and 21.2 seconds, respectively) and long jump.[2] Alworth was a three-time Academic All-American, graduating with a degree in marketing as a pre-law student.[2] In 1962, Alworth was on multiple All-American teams: Look magazine, Associated Press, United Press International and Coaches.[2] He is a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity. Alworth is a member of the University of Arkansas Hall of Honor and the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame; he was named to the University of Arkansas' 1960's All-Decade Team, and the school's All-Century Team in 1994.

San Diego Chargers

Alworth was chosen in the first round (eighth overall) of the 1962 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. The American Football League's Oakland Raiders drafted him as their first pick (ninth overall) in the second round of the 1962 AFL Draft, then traded his rights to the San Diego Chargers in return for halfback Bo Roberson, quarterback Hunter Enis, and offensive tackle Gene Selawski.[3] Alworth opted to sign with the Chargers instead of the 49ers. The Chargers moved Alworth to wide receiver. His slender build, speed, grace, and leaping ability earned him the nickname "Bambi."

Alworth was an AFL Western Division All-Star in seven consecutive seasons, from 1963 through 1969, and was an AFL All-League flanker the same seven seasons, selected by his peers from 1963-1966, and by newspaper wire services from 1967-1964. Alworth was the UPI's 1963 AFL Most Valuable Player and is a member of the AFL All-Time Team. He scored on a 48-yard touchdown pass in the Chargers' 1963 AFL Championship Game victory over the Boston Patriots. In Alworth's 8 AFL seasons, he led the league in receiving yards and receptions three times. He also set a Chargers record with 83 touchdowns.

He held records for the most consecutive games with a reception (96) and most consecutive seasons with over 1,000 receiving yards (7). He still holds the record for the most games with 200+ yards receiving (5, tied with Calvin Johnson) and was the only receiver to average more than 100 yards a game in three consecutive seasons (1964–1966). Alworth formed a formidable tandem with Chargers quarterback John Hadl, and is considered by many to be the best wide receiver in all professional football during the 1960s. He was one of the few American Football League stars to be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated (SI), which like other media of the 1960s, showed a distinct bias for the NFL. SI even went so far in 1969 as to declare Alworth "Pro Football's Top Receiver", this, a year before the AFL-NFL merger, and two years before the Common Draft, before which many claimed the AFL had inferior players.

Dallas Cowboys

On May 19, 1971, Alworth was traded to the Dallas Cowboys, for his final two seasons. In exchange, the Chargers received Tony Liscio, Pettis Norman, and Ron East.[4]

In Super Bowl VI following the 1971 season, he scored the game's first touchdown, a 7-yard touchdown pass from Roger Staubach in the Cowboys' 24-3 victory over the Miami Dolphins.[5] Alworth would later call the two receptions he made in Super Bowl VI (one that converted a third and long and the other for the touchdown) the two most important catches of his career.

Legacy

Alworth finished his 11 AFL/NFL seasons with 543 receptions for 10,266 yards. He also rushed for 129 yards, returned 29 punts for 309 yards, gained 216 yards on 10 kickoff returns, and scored 87 touchdowns (85 receiving and 2 rushing).

In 1972, he was inducted to the San Diego Hall of Champions. In 1977, he was inducted in the Chargers Hall of Fame. In 1978, he became the first San Diego Charger and the first player who had played in the AFL to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He chose to be presented at the Canton, Ohio ceremony by Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis, his former position coach at San Diego, who had much to do with the success of the AFL.

Alworth's number 19 was retired by the Chargers in 2005.[6] In 1970, he was selected as a member of the AFL All-Time Team, and in 1994, he was named to the NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team, the only player to be named to both teams.

In 1988, he was inducted into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame.

In 1999, he was ranked number 31 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Football Players, making him the highest-ranking Charger and the highest-ranking player to have spent more than one season in the AFL.

In 2014, he was inducted into the Southwest Conference Hall of Fame.[7]

AFL-NFL records

  • Fastest player to reach 50 receiving TD- 54 GP
  • Fastest player to reach 4,000 receiving yards- 42 GP
  • Fastest player to reach 5,000 receiving yards- 52 GP
  • Fastest player to reach 6,000 receiving yards- 62 GP
  • Fastest player to reach 7,000 receiving yards- 73 GP
  • Fastest player to reach 8,000 receiving yards- 83 GP
  • Fastest player to reach 9,000 receiving yards- 93 GP[8]

Personal life

Alworth and his wife Laura, whom he married in 1997,[9] live in San Diego. He has six children.[10] He founded All Aboard Mini Storage, with facilities throughout California.[11]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Lance "Bambi" Alworth". National Football Foundation's College Football Hall of Fame. Archived from the original on May 28, 2009. Retrieved May 28, 2009. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Eiland, William U (2002) [1992]. Dawson, Dawn P, ed. Great Athletes 1 (Revised ed.). Salem Press. pp. 52–54.  
  3. ^ Sinn, Donn (December 28, 2002). "More Did You Know". 49ers.com. San Francisco Forty Niners. Archived from the original on May 28, 2009. Retrieved May 28, 2009. 
  4. ^ Buck, Ray (February 29, 2008). "Trading wasn't always so difficult in the NFL".  
  5. ^ http://www.nfl.com/superbowl/history/boxscore/sbvi
  6. ^ Scholfield, Steve (July 14, 2005). "Chargers to honor AFL icon Alworth". North County Times. Archived from the original on May 12, 2012. 
  7. ^ http://nashvillesportsmix.com/2014/08/nine-razorbacks-to-be-inducted-into-swc-hall-of-fame/
  8. ^ http://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/A/AlwoLa00.htm
  9. ^ http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=4072
  10. ^ http://arkansas.scout.com/story/603739-alworth-still-going-strong-at-66
  11. ^ http://ir.extraspace.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=180054&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1830203&highlight=

External links

  • Career statistics and player information from NFL.com • Pro-Football-Reference
  • Alworth's citation in the American Football League Hall of Fame
  • Alworth's Pro Football Hall of Fame page
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