Tom Pate
Date of birth: 1953
Place of birth: Omaha, Nebraska
Date of death: October 21, 1975
Place of death: Calgary, Alberta
Career information
Position(s): LB
College: University of Nebraska
 As player:
1975 Hamilton Tiger Cats
Career highlights and awards
Honours: 1971 - National Champions Nebraska Cornhuskers

Tom Pate was a Canadian Football League linebacker who died from a critical injury sustained while playing a league game in 1975.

A graduate of the University of Nebraska (where he majored in business administration,) Pate was a 3 time letterman[1] with the Cornhuskers and a member their 1971 National Championship team.[2] He joined the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1975 and as a rookie played 12 regular season games and recovered 1 fumble.[3]

On October 18, 1975, playing against the Stampeders in Calgary, he suffered an aneurysm late in the fourth quarter during a running play deep in Hamilton territory on which Willie Burden scored to win the game for Calgary. Pate was critically injured on the play after striking his head on the McMahon Stadium turf while being blocked by Stampeders fullback Rick Galbos. Only 23 at the time, he never regained consciousness and died three days later.

In 1976 the Canadian Football League Players' Association named its sportsmanship and community service award after him: the Tom Pate Memorial Award.


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