Another football legend has left us. On Friday, Paul Hornung passed away at the age of 84.
The Louisville Sports Commission announced his passing around mid-day Friday. Hornung battled dementia over the past several years. He is now the fourth Pro Football Hall of Famer and member of the Green Bay Packers’ 1960 championship teams to pass away in 2020, following Willie Wood, Willie Davis, and Herb Adderley.
Nicknamed “The Golden Boy,” Hornung won the Heisman Trophy in 1956, a few months before the Packers drafted him first overall in 1957. A versatile player in college at Notre Dame, Hornung primarily played halfback for the Packers and was a critical player on offense during Vince Lombardi’s tenure coaching the team. Though he accrued over 5,000 yards and scored 62 touchdowns in his career, he also served as the team’s primary place-kicker for several seasons, converting 66 of 140 field goal attempts and 190 of 194 extra points.
Hornung played in four of the Packers’ five championship teams in the 1960s before retiring following the 1966 season. He also famously sat out the 1963 season while on a suspension from the NFL for betting on games, but admitted his mistake and served his suspension without incident. Hornung was enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1986, ten years after the induction of Jim Taylor, his partner in the Packers’ backfield.
A native of Louisville, Kentucky, Hornung’s name adorns an award given out each year by the Louisville Sports Commission to the most versatile player in college football. Recent winners include Lynn Bowden (2019), Rondale Moore (2018), and Saquon Barkley (2017).