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Billy Lothridge
200px
Lothridge with Bobby Dodd, 1962
No. 18, 10, 26, 7     
Punter
Safety
Quarterback
Personal information
Date of birth: (1942-01-01)January 1, 1942
Place of birth: Cleveland, Georgia
Date of death: February 24, 1996(1996-02-24) (aged 54)
Place of death: Pensacola, Florida
Career information
College: Georgia Tech
NFL Draft: 1964 / Round: 6 / Pick: 73
AFL Draft: 1964 / Round: 12 / Pick: 95
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
* Dallas Cowboys ( 1964)
Career highlights and awards
* 2× All-SEC (1962, 1963)
Games played     104
Punts     532
Punt yards     21,792
Average punt     41
Interceptions     1
Stats at NFL.com
Stats at pro-football-reference.com

William Lamar Lothridge (January 1, 1942 – February 24, 1996) was an American football Punter, Safety and Quarterback in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Rams, Atlanta Falcons and Miami Dolphins. He played college football at Georgia Tech.

Early yearsEdit

Lothridge was a graduate of Gainesville High School in Gainesville, Georgia where he played quarterback. He teamed with Billy Martin both at Gainesville and later in Georgia Tech to form a dominant passing/rushing attack. As a senior, he received All-State and All-Southern honors.

He accepted a football scholarship from Georgia Tech and became a starter as a junior, registering 1,006 passing yards, 6 passing touchdowns, 8 interceptions, 478 rushing yards and 9 rushing touchdowns.

As a senior in 1963, he posted 1,017 passing yards, 10 passing touchdowns, 7 interceptions, 223 rushing yards and 3 rushing touchdowns. He ranked fourth in nation in scoring, tenth in punting (40.8 average) and finished second in the Heisman Trophy voting behind Roger Staubach.[1]

In 1969, he was inducted into the Georgia Tech Sports Hall of Fame. In 1986, he was inducted into the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame.

Professional careerEdit

Dallas CowboysEdit

Lothridge was selected by the Dallas Cowboys in the sixth round (73rd overall) of the 1964 NFL Draft and by the Oakland Raiders in the 12th round (95th overall) of the 1964 AFL Draft. He signed with the Cowboys to be a punter and placekicker.

As a rookie, even though he tore a ligament in his left knee in training camp, he was named the team's punter and third-team quarterback. His net punting average of 37.9 yards wasn't reached by another Cowboy until the 2006 season (Mat McBriar-38.6 yards). He also tied a franchise record with a 75-yard punt in the fifth game against the New York Giants.

On August 29, 1965, he was traded along with a fourth round draft choice (#54-Rod Sherman) to the Baltimore Colts, in exchange for the rights to future All-Pro Ralph Neely.[2]

Baltimore ColtsEdit

Lothridge was sold by the Baltimore Colts to the Los Angeles Rams before the start of the 1965 season.[3]

Los Angeles RamsEdit

After playing in 9 games he was waived on November 17, 1965.[4]

Atlanta FalconsEdit

On November 25, 1965, he signed with the Atlanta Falcons as one of the team's original players.[5] He won the NFL punting title in 1967 with a 43.7 average and repeated the next year with a 42.8 average, while receiving All-Pro honors.[6] In 1968, he was also a starter at safety and had 3 interceptions.[7] He retired before the start of the 1971 season, but was brought back when the team experienced punting problems.[8] He was waived before the start of the 1972 season.[9]

Miami DolphinsEdit

On November 22, 1972, he was signed by the Miami Dolphins to replace an injured Larry Seiple. Even though he was placed on the team's taxi squad when Seiple returned, he got a chance to be a part of the Dolphins perfect season.[10]

Personal lifeEdit

Lothridge died in 1996, after suffering a series of three heart attacks over a four-year period.[11]

ReferencesEdit

  1. "Lothridge Called Top Versatile Star". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1144&dat=19631221&id=ycAbAAAAIBAJ&sjid=_U4EAAAAIBAJ&pg=5930,1808296. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  2. "Cowboys Trade Lothridge To Baltimore Colts". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=348&dat=19650830&id=7xQwAAAAIBAJ&sjid=vzUDAAAAIBAJ&pg=5576,6408126. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  3. "Billy Lothridge gets a kick out of pro football". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=348&dat=19691109&id=NWlhAAAAIBAJ&sjid=tjEDAAAAIBAJ&pg=7270,1291793&hl=es. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  4. "Rams Place Lothridge On Waivers". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1876&dat=19651118&id=RHUsAAAAIBAJ&sjid=BMwEAAAAIBAJ&pg=3775,3134442. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  5. "NFL Falcons Sign Billy Lothridge". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1955&dat=19651125&id=MK4hAAAAIBAJ&sjid=uZoFAAAAIBAJ&pg=5789,5638333. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  6. "Lothridge Takes Punting Title". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2209&dat=19680308&id=po1jAAAAIBAJ&sjid=_XkNAAAAIBAJ&pg=7422,850435. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  7. "Van Brocklin cites Atlanta's defense; Bears lose Sayers". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=348&dat=19681111&id=cdw0AAAAIBAJ&sjid=90MDAAAAIBAJ&pg=6768,1565737. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  8. "Bargain Backfield Boosts Falcons". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1734&dat=19711103&id=vegbAAAAIBAJ&sjid=wlEEAAAAIBAJ&pg=5343,235971. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  9. "John Mackey, 'Best End in 50 years', Denies Colts' Claims That He Has Retired". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2202&dat=19720911&id=7rJbAAAAIBAJ&sjid=IlENAAAAIBAJ&pg=7183,947930. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  10. "Lothridge Has No Regrets About Joining Dolphins". https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1798&dat=19721218&id=23U0AAAAIBAJ&sjid=I40EAAAAIBAJ&pg=4157,4456269. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  11. "Local gridiron great honored with street sign". http://gainesvillelegals.com/news/stories/20051216/localsports/48742.shtml. Retrieved February 3, 2018.

External linksEdit

Template:Cowboys1964DraftPicks

Template:NFL punting yards leaders

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