Hall of Fame - Inductee Detail

J.C. "Mr. Zoom" Caroline

J.C. "Mr. Zoom" Caroline


  • Position: Halfback
  • School: Illinois
  • High School: Columbia, SC (Booker T. Washington HS)
  • Years: 1953-1954
  • Inducted: 1980
  • Place of Birth: Warrenton, GA
  • Date of Birth: Jan 17, 1933
  • Jersey Number: 26
  • Height: 6-0
  • Weight: 184

Member Biography

A gifted 6-0, 184-pound speedy halfback known as "Mr. Zoom", J.C. Caroline led the nation in rushing as a sophomore in 1953 and was named All-American. In nine games he gained 1256 yards by rushing, 52 on pass receptions, 129 on punt returns, and 233 in kickoff returns. He averaged a gain of 7.7 yards for each time he had the football. In 1953 he helped the Illini defeat Ohio State, 41-20, a team which featured Hall of Famer Hopalong Cassady. Caroline dominated that contest with a stunning 192 yards rushing and two touchdowns. As a junior in 1954, Caroline rushed for 440 yards in four games. Then he was injured and missed the rest of the season. Caroline went to the Chicago Bears and played 10 years.