OCTOBER 2, 1972
The party was already swinging last April 15 when the phone rang. Kenoy Kennedy picked up the receiver and was given the good news: The Denver Broncos were about to select Kennedy, a free safety from Arkansas, with the 14th pick in the second round of the NFL draft. Of the 75 revelers in Kennedy's parents' modest house in the dusty town of Terrell, Texas, that day, the most delighted by the good news may have been the man standing in the corner of the living room—Kennedy's agent, Greg Pruitt. "A dream came true at that moment," says Pruitt. "It's nice to be there when that happens."
Pruitt, 49, knows a thing or two about realizing dreams. A two-time All-America running back at Oklahoma, Pruitt made his name soon after the Sooners adopted the wishbone offense in 1970. The next year, as a junior, he rushed for 1,665 yards on 178 carries, which translated into a must-be-a-misprint 9.4 yards a carry. But what he remembers most vividly from that season isn't making defenders miss tackles; rather, it's a tackle he missed. "In the Game of the Century, against Nebraska, I was the first player who had a clean shot at Johnny Rodgers on his punt return," says Pruitt, who was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in August. "He just juked me, and I can still see him running."
After being selected by the Cleveland Browns in the second round of the 1973 draft, Pruitt played 12 seasons in the NFL, rushing for at least 1,000 yards in '75, '76 and '77 Since he married Mary Hildreth in '84, they have lived with her daughter Bridgette, 27, and his son Greg Jr., a highly regarded junior running back and defensive back for Shaker Heights ( Ohio) High. "Greg Jr. wants to break my records at Oklahoma," says Pruitt, "but that would be tough, since the Sooners now pass on almost every down. At the moment he likes Florida State."
When Greg Jr. began playing football, Pruitt realized how much he missed the game and, in 1995, he gave up a job as a recreational manager for the city of Cleveland to become an agent. These days he commutes between his home in Shaker Heights and the Houston offices of Pruitt-Vaughn, Inc. Sports Management. Pruitt has represented boxers and numerous NFL players and, although he has yet to sign a first-round draft pick, his client list, which includes Chris Akins, KaRon Coleman, Jamie Nails and Greg Wesley, is growing. "Everyone needs to have a financial plan and a budget," says Pruitt of his new career. "If you play just a few years in the NFL, you shouldn't have to worry about money for the rest of your life. You just have to be smart."