Bob Ferguson (American football)

Robert Eugene "Bob" Ferguson (August 29, 1939 – December 30, 2004) was an American football fullback. He played college football at Ohio State University, where he won the Maxwell Award in 1961. Ferguson then played professionally in the National Football League (NFL) with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Minnesota Vikings. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1996.

Bob Ferguson
Born:August 29, 1939
Troy, Ohio
Died:December 30, 2004 (aged 65)
Columbus, Ohio
Career information
Position(s)Fullback
CollegeOhio State
NFL draft1962 / Round: 1 / Pick 5
Career history
As player
1962Pittsburgh Steelers
1963Minnesota Vikings
AwardsMaxwell Award (1961)
UPI Player of the Year (1961)

Playing career

Ferguson attended Troy High School in Troy, Ohio. Ferguson's first year of eligibility at Ohio State University was 1959. The starting fullback at the beginning of the season was the senior, and Heisman Trophy candidate, Bob White. Through the course of the season, however, Ferguson supplanted White as the starter and led the team in rushing that season, averaging 6.1 yards per carry.

Over the next two seasons, Ferguson continued to lead the Ohio State offensive attack. In both 1960 and 1961 Ferguson was a unanimous All-American selection. In 1961, he won the UPI College Football Player of the Year, the Maxwell Award, and was the runner-up to Ernie Davis for the Heisman Trophy. The 1961 Heisman vote was the second-closest in the history of the award, with Davis edging Ferguson by 53 points.

Ferguson shared the Ohio State backfield in 1961 with halfbacks Paul Warfield and Matt Snell. Ferguson was a power runner and Warfield was supplied speed. The common description of the time said, "Warfield is the lightning, Ferguson is the thunder." The Buckeyes won the Big Ten Conference that year and were voted national champions by the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA).

Ferguson finished his career at Ohio State with 2,162 rushing yards. This rushing total was at the time second in team history behind Howard Cassady. Ferguson owns the distinction of never having been thrown for a loss during his college football career. Ferguson was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1996, and into Ohio State's own Varsity O Hall of Fame in 1987. He was selected to the Ohio State Football All-Century Team in 2000.

Ferguson was a first-round draft pick by both the Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League and the San Diego Chargers of the American Football League. Ferguson accepted the offer from the Steelers, but a head injury hampered his football career. After a mere two seasons, playing both for the Steelers and the Minnesota Vikings, he retired.

Later life

Ferguson returned to Ohio State University and earned a master's degree in sociology. He worked as a youth counselor in Columbus, Ohio until he was forced to retire in 1990 due to health problems. Ferguson died in 2004 of complications due to diabetes.

External links

Bob Ferguson

Bob Ferguson may refer to:

Bob Ferguson (American football) (1939–2004), American football fullback

Bob Ferguson (footballer) (1917–2006), English professional footballer

Bob Ferguson (golfer) (1846–1915), golfer

Bob Ferguson (infielder) (1845–1894), baseball infielder, manager, executive, and umpire

Bob Ferguson (musician) (1927–2001), songwriter, manager, executive, writer, historian, and media specialist

Bob Ferguson (pitcher) (1919–2008), baseball pitcher

Bob Ferguson (politician) (born 1965), Washington state politician

Bob Ferguson (ice hockey) (born 1954), Canadian former ice hockey player and coach

Bob Ferguson (pole vaulter), Canadian pole vaulter and medallist in athletics at the 1986 Commonwealth Games

Bob Ferguson—championships, awards, and honors

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