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College Football Hall of Famer Tommy Nobis Passes Away
The 1981 College Football Hall of Fame inductee from Texas was 74.
Published: 12/13/2017 3:47:00 PM
Former University of Texas offensive guard and linebacker Tommy Nobis, a 1981 College Football Hall of Fame inductee, passed away Dec. 13. He was 74.

Nobis played for the Longhorns from 1963-65 and was inducted into the Longhorn Men’s Hall of Honor in 1976. His No. 60 is retired by both The University of Texas and the Atlanta Falcons, as he joins Earl Campbell, Bobby Layne, Ricky Williams, Vince Young and Colt McCoy as the only Longhorns to have their jerseys retired at UT. He was Texas’ first-ever No. 1 overall draft pick.

At Texas, Nobis was an offensive guard and linebacker on the 1963 Longhorn team which claimed UT’s first national championship, the only sophomore starter on that team. He went on to earn every honor available to a lineman during the next two seasons, even though a knee injury would slow him down in 1965. He won the Maxwell Award as the nation’s best player and the Outland Trophy as the nation’s best lineman. He was a two-time All-American (1964-65) and a three-time All-Southwest Conference honoree (1963-65).

Nobis was the first-ever draft pick of the Atlanta Falcons in 1965. In eleven professional seasons, he led the Falcons in tackles nine times, went to five Pro Bowls (one in 1972 after two knee surgeries), was named All-Pro twice and was chosen for the NFL’s “All-Decade Team” for the 1960s despite playing on a team that won only 16 games in their first five years of existence. As the first member of the Atlanta Falcons, he gained the nickname of “Mr. Falcon.” In his first season, he was not only chosen the NFL Rookie of the Year and voted to the Pro Bowl, but amassed 294 tackles, which still stands as an NFL record.

After his playing days, Nobis remained loyal to the Falcons, working in the front office for nearly 40 years after his 11-year playing career.

Nobis is also enshrined in the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame, the State of Texas Sports Hall of Fame, the San Antonio Sports Hall of Fame and the Atlanta Sports Hall of Fame.

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