Tommy O'Connell

Thomas B. O'Connell (September 26, 1930 – March 20, 2014) was an American collegiate and professional football quarterback who played in three NFL seasons, in 1953 for the Chicago Bears and in 1956 and 1957 for the Cleveland Browns and in two American Football League seasons, 1960 and 1961, for the Buffalo Bills. He attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Class of 1953, where he was a member of the Chi Phi Fraternity.

He started for the Cleveland Browns in the 1957 NFL Championship Game while coming off a severely sprained ankle and a hairline fracture of the fibula.[1] He retired from football after the 1957 season to go into coaching, but was lured back to the playing field when the American Football League started play in 1960. He is the father of former professional ice hockey player and general manager Mike O'Connell. He died March 20, 2014, aged 83.[2]

Tommy O'Connell
refer to caption
O'Connell on a 1953 Bowman football card
Position:Quarterback
Personal information
Born:September 26, 1930
Chicago, Illinois
Died:March 20, 2014 (aged 83)
near Delray Beach, Florida
Career information
College:Illinois
NFL Draft:1952 / Round: 18 / Pick: 212
Career history
As player:
As coach:
Player stats at PFR

Professional career

Tommy O’Connell emerged as the Browns quarterback in 1956 following the retirement of Hall of Fame QB Otto Graham. In 1957, he was selected to the Pro Bowl and won seven of the eight games he started, leading the Browns to the Eastern Conference title. His performance that year was stellar. When compared to all other passers that have attempted 100 passes in a single season, O'Connell has the highest Passing Yards per Attempt average ever, a staggering 11.17. This is a great achievement when considering that in the 90+ years of NFL football, only four other quarterbacks have managed to attain a Passing Yards per Attempt average of over 10.0 for a season. His passer rating that year was 93.3, the fourth best in the decade of the 1950s.

Coaching career

O'Connell was the 18th head football coach at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa and he held that position for the 1959 season.[3] His coaching record at Drake was 2–7.[4] O'Connell died in 2014.[5]

Head coaching record

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Drake Bulldogs (NCAA University Division independent) (1959)
1959 Drake 2–7
Drake: 2–7
Total: 2–7

See also

References

  1. ^ Chuck Heaton, Lions Crush Browns, 59-14, Cleveland Plain Dealer December 29, 1957, Plain Dealer Browns' History Database Accessed November 29, 2007, http://www.cleveland.com/brownshistory/plaindealer/index.ssf?/browns/more/history/19571229BROWNS.html Archived June 17, 2012, at WebCite
  2. ^ http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/bostonglobe/obituary.aspx?n=thomas-b-oconnell&pid=170301913
  3. ^ O'Connell Quits at Drake
  4. ^ Drake Coaching Records Archived July 27, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/palmbeachpost/obituary.aspx?pid=170523723

External links

1952 All-Big Ten Conference football team

The 1952 All-Big Ten Conference football team consists of American football players selected to the All-Big Ten Conference teams selected by the Associated Press (AP) and United Press (UP) for the 1952 Big Ten Conference football season.

1952 Big Ten Conference football season

The 1952 Big Ten Conference football season was the 57th season of college football played by the member schools of the Big Ten Conference (also known as the Western Conference and the Big Nine Conference) and was a part of the 1952 college football season.

The 1952 Wisconsin Badgers football team, under head coach Ivy Williamson, compiled a 6–3–1 record, tied for the Big Ten championship, was ranked No. 10 in the final UP poll and No. 11 in the final AP poll, and lost to USC in the 1953 Rose Bowl. Tackle Dave Suminski was the team's only first-team All-American and was selected as the team's most valuable player. Sophomore Alan Ameche was a first-team All-Big Ten player, set a Wisconsin record with 946 rushing yards, and went on to win the 1954 Heisman Trophy.

The 1952 Purdue Boilermakers football team, under head coach Stu Holcomb, was the Big Ten co-champion and ranked No. 12 in the final UP poll and No. 18 in the final AP poll. Purdue end Bernie Flowers was the Big Ten's only consensus first-team All-American in 1952 and was the first Big Ten player selected in the 1953 NFL Draft. Dale Samuels was the first Purdue quarterback to pass for over 1,000 yards in a season.

The conference's statistical leaders included Illinois quarterback Tommy O'Connell with 1,761 passing yards and 1,724 yards of total offense, Alan Ameche with 946 rushing yards, and Indiana's Gene Gedman with 54 points scored.

1957 Cleveland Browns season

The 1957 Cleveland Browns season was the team's eighth season with the National Football League.

1957 NFL Championship Game

The 1957 National Football League championship game was the 25th annual championship game, held on December 29 at Briggs Stadium in Detroit, Michigan.The Detroit Lions (8–4), winners of the Western Conference, hosted the Cleveland Browns (9–2–1), champions of the Eastern Conference. Detroit had won the regular season game 20–7 three weeks earlier on December 8, also at Briggs Stadium, but lost quarterback Bobby Layne with a broken right ankle late in the first half. Reserve quarterback Tobin Rote, a starter the previous year with Green Bay, filled in for Layne and won that game with Cleveland, the next week at Chicago, and the tiebreaker playoff game at San Francisco.

It was the fourth pairing of the two teams in the championship game; they met previously in 1952, 1953, and 1954. The Browns were favored by three points, but the home underdog Lions scored two touchdowns in each quarter and won in a rout, 59–14.Until 2006, this was the last time that major professional teams from Michigan and Ohio met in a postseason series or game. As of 2018, this was the last playoff game played in the city of Detroit other than Super Bowl XL in 2006. The Lions other two home playoff games since 1957 (1991 and 1993) were played at the Pontiac Silverdome in nearby Pontiac, Michigan.

1958–59 National Hurling League

The 1958–59 National Hurling League was the 28th season of the NHL, an annual hurling competition for the GAA county teams. Tipperary won the title.

1959 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship

Refereed by Jeremiah Fitzgerald (Rathkeale, Limerick)

The 1959 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship was the 73rd staging of the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, the Gaelic Athletic Association's premier inter-county hurling tournament. The championship began on 12 April 1959 and ended on 4 October 1959.

The championship was won by Waterford who secured the title following a 3-12 to 1-10 defeat of Kilkenny in the All-Ireland final. This was their second All-Ireland title, their first in eleven championship seasons. It remains their last All-Ireland triumph.

Tipperary were the defending champions but were defeated by Waterford in the Munster semi-final.

1960 Buffalo Bills season

The 1960 Buffalo Bills season was the team's first season in the American Football League (AFL). Home games were played at War Memorial Stadium in Buffalo, New York. Head Coach Buster Ramsey's Bills compiled a 5–8–1 record, placing them third in the AFL Eastern Division.

Unlike most of the offensive-minded AFL, the Bills focused on defense, allowing the third-fewest points in the league (303). Their defensive line boasted Laverne Torczon and Chuck McMurtry (both of whom were 1st Team All-AFL in 1960), as well as a mobile, hard-hitting middle linebacker in Archie Matsos, who was AFL All-Star in each of the three seasons he spent in Buffalo. The Bills' defense led the league in fewest passing yards allowed (2,130) and most passes intercepted (33), with NFL veterans Richie McCabe and Jim Wagstaff in their secondary.The Bills' offense, however, was not as competent. The 1960 Bills had the worst passing attack in the AFL, throwing for 2,346 yards. Former Cleveland Browns quarterback Tommy O'Connell started the season 1–3 before being replaced by Johnny Green. Green would go 3–3 as a starter, despite only completing 39% of his passes.Richie Lucas, the Bills' first ever draft pick, was a bust, both at quarterback and at halfback, throwing only 49 passes all season.The Bills did show glimmers of hope on offense, however, by showcasing running back Wray Carlton and flanker Elbert "Golden Wheels" Dubenion, who would later go on to be AFL All-Stars for the Bills in the mid-1960s.

Bob Dee

Robert Henry Dee (May 18, 1933 – April 18, 1979) was an American football defensive end in the National Football League and the American Football League. He was a three-sport letterman at the College of the Holy Cross who was one of the first players signed by the Boston Patriots of the American Football League in 1960.

After two years with the Washington Redskins in 1957–58, Dee returned to Holy Cross to tutor the team's linemen.

He became an ironman of the American Football League who never missed a game during his career, starting 112 consecutive games. Despite equipment improvements over the years, Dee was a superstitious player who chose to wear the same helmet throughout his career (105 of 112 games). Dee etched his name in the history books by scoring the first points in American Football League history, scoring a touchdown when he dove onto a fumble by Bills QB Tommy O'Connell (father of former Boston Bruins GM Mike O'Connell) the end zone in the second quarter of the league's first-ever exhibition game, a contest between the Patriots and the Bills on July 30, 1960. He was voted to four American Football League All-Star teams (1961, 1963–65) and is a member of the Patriots All-1960s (AFL) Team.

Dee recorded 33 QB sacks (not including his strip sack of Tommy O'Connell in the AFL's first Exhibition Game).

Dee sacked Frank Tripucka, Al Dorow, Hunter Enis, Jacky Lee, MC Reynolds, Randy Duncan, Cotton Davidson, George Blanda, Jack Kemp, Johnny Green, John Hadl, Tobin Rote, Len Dawson, Eddie Wilson, Dick Wood, Joe Namath, Tom Flores, Rick Norton and Bob Griese and recovered fumbles by Al Carmichael, Art Baker, Wayne Crow, Jacky Lee, Paul Lowe, Bill Tobin, Wray Carlton & Max Chobian.

He had two interceptions in the Patriots 26-8 Eastern Divisional Playoff Game win over the Buffalo Bills. In that game, he wore one sneaker and one football shoe with spikes, which made him maneuver better in the snow in the game played at War Memorial Stadium on December 28, 1963.

On July 22, 1968, Dee announced his retirement from professional football, citing a business opportunity that was "too good to resist."

Dee died of a heart attack in 1979 while on a business trip.

He was awarded a game ball for his outstanding performance in the Patriots 34-17 win over the Houston Oilers on November 29, 1964.

He was inducted in the Patriots Hall of Fame on August 18, 1993.

In recognition of his accomplishments on the field, the Patriots retired his number (89).

Bruce Mathison

Bruce Martin Mathison (born April 25, 1959) is a former American football quarterback who played in the NFL for the San Diego Chargers (two stints), Buffalo Bills, and the Seattle Seahawks. He played college football at the University of Nebraska.

Jeff Christensen

Jeffrey Bruce Christensen (born January 8, 1960) is a former American football quarterback in the National Football League. He played for the Cincinnati Bengals, Philadelphia Eagles and Cleveland Browns. He played college football for the Eastern Illinois Panthers. His son played college football at Iowa and Eastern Illinois.

Kelly Holcomb

Bryan Kelly Holcomb (born July 9, 1973) is a former American football quarterback of the National Football League. He was signed by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent in 1995. He played college football at Middle Tennessee State. Holcomb was also a member of the Indianapolis Colts, Cleveland Browns, Buffalo Bills, Philadelphia Eagles and Minnesota Vikings.

List of Buffalo Bills starting quarterbacks

These quarterbacks have started at least one game for the Buffalo Bills of the National Football League. The Bills are a professional American football franchise based in the Buffalo–Niagara Falls metropolitan area. The team competes in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the American Football Conference (AFC) East division. The quarterbacks are listed in order of the date of each player's first start for the team at that position.

List of Cleveland Browns starting quarterbacks

The Cleveland Browns are a professional American football team in Cleveland, Ohio. The Browns compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member of the American Football Conference (AFC) North division.

Since joining the NFL in 1950, the Browns have had 57 different quarterbacks start in at least one game for the team. Pro Football Hall of Fame member Otto Graham, the team's first quarterback, led the Browns to three NFL championships in their first six seasons in the league. Since resuming operations in 1999 after a three-year vacancy, the franchise has been notable for its futility at the quarterback position. From 1999 through week 4 of the 2018 season, the team had 30 different players start at quarterback. Tim Couch, the Browns' first overall draft pick in 1999, is the only quarterback in that stretch to start all 16 games in a season for the team, having done so in 2001. The Browns have started more than one quarterback in 17 consecutive seasons.

Mike O'Connell

Michael Thomas O'Connell (born November 25, 1955) is the Director of Pro Development for the Los Angeles Kings. O'Connell was also a former professional ice hockey player and general manager. He played 860 National Hockey League (NHL) regular season games between 1977 and 1990 and later served as the general manager of the Boston Bruins from 2000 until 2006. He is the son of former National Football League (NFL) quarterback Tommy O'Connell and brother of former World Hockey Association (WHA) player Tim O'Connell.

Milt Plum

Milton Ross Plum (born January 20, 1935) is a former American football quarterback who played for the Cleveland Browns (1957–61), Detroit Lions (1962–67), Los Angeles Rams (1968) and New York Giants (1969) of the National Football League.

Terry Luck

Terry Lee Luck (born December 14, 1952) is a former American football quarterback in the National Football League. He played for the Cleveland Browns. He played college football for the Nebraska Huskers.

Thomas O'Connell

Thomas O'Connell may refer to:

Thomas O'Connell (Medal of Honor) (1842–1899), American Civil War sailor

Thomas J. O'Connell (1882–1969), Irish Labour party politician, leader of the party 1927–1932

Thomas W. O'Connell, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations/Low Intensity Conflict & Interdependent Capabilities

Tommy O'Connell (1930–2014), American football player and coach

Tommy O'Connell (hurler) (born 1939), Irish hurler

Tom O'Connell (television personality) (born 1990), contestant on Big Brother UK

Tom O'Connell (cricketer), Australian cricketer

Tommy O'Connell (Cork hurler)

Thomas O'Connell (born 2000) is an Irish hurler who plays for Cork Senior Championship club Midleton and at inter-county level with the Cork senior hurling team. He usually lines out as a right wing-forward.

Tommy O'Connell (hurler)

Thomas "Tommy" O'Connell (born 1939) is an Irish retired hurler who played as a left corner-forward for the Kilkenny senior team.O'Connell made his first appearance for the team during the 1959 championship and was a semi-regular member of the starting fifteen for the following seven seasons. During that time he won one Leinster winners' medal. He ended up as an All-Ireland runner-up on one occasion, after scoring a hat-trick of goals in the final.At club level O'Connell was a two-time county club championship medalist with Fenians.

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