- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
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- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
At age 85 of complications from bladder surgery, Hall of Fame defensive end Andy Robustelli, who in 14 NFL seasons played in eight title games, winning in 1951 with the L.A. Rams and in '56 with the Giants. Robustelli served in the Navy during World War II before playing both ways at Arnold College and then becoming a 19th-round pick for L.A. in '51. Unable to win a spot on offense, he focused on defense, where he was a first team All-Pro six times, receiving the Maxwell Club's player of the year award in '62. Robustelli (above) spent his final four years as a player-coach in New York before retiring in '64. He was later the Giants' director of operations from '74 to '78.
On Monday from Oneida (N.Y.) Correctional Facility, where he served nearly 20 months (of a two-year sentence) after pleading guilty in 2009 to criminal possession of a firearm, NFL receiver Plaxico Burress. The 33-year-old was greeted by his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, and later reunited with his wife and two children, including a daughter who was born while Burress was incarcerated. Burress said he expected next to travel to his home in South Florida to begin training for a return to the NFL. "If and when everything gets settled," he said, referring to the league's labor dispute, "I'll be ready."
Of its 2004 Bowl Championship Series title, which it won by going undefeated in 13 games, including a 55--19 Orange Bowl beatdown of Oklahoma, USC. BCS officials had warned of the possibility of such an action in June 2010 when the NCAA punished the Trojans with a two-year postseason ban and the loss of 30 football scholarships following alleged rules violations committed in '04 and '05. Monday's announcement came less than two weeks after the NCAA denied USC's appeal and now leaves the '04 season without a national champion, although USC will retain its AP title.
At age 81, Hall of Fame running back John Henry Johnson, a four-time Pro Bowler and a member of the 49ers' Million Dollar Backfield. After playing for St. Mary's College of California and Arizona State, the 6'2", 210-pound Johnson, a second-round pick of the Steelers in 1953, took a more lucrative offer from the CFL's Calgary Stampeders. The next year he joined San Francisco and ranked second in the NFL in rushing with 681 yards. After three seasons with the 49ers and three with the Lions, Johnson finally joined Pittsburgh, where he became the team's first back to rush for more than 1,000 yards, a total he topped in '62 and '64. When Johnson retired in '66 his 6,803 career rushing yards ranked him behind only Jim Brown, Joe Perry and Jim Taylor.
In a civil suit filed by 23-year-old Army cornerback Richard King, that he was assaulted in March at Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston by R&B singer Patti LaBelle's bodyguards. Surveillance video shows that King, who had four interceptions as a junior in 2010, was standing near the singer's limo when two bodyguards struck him several times. King alleges that LaBelle ordered the attack after deeming him to have come too close to her luggage. One of LaBelle's entourage, however, reported at the time that King instigated the fight and had struck first. Also, a police report mentions that he appeared intoxicated and smelled of alcohol. King's lawyer denies that King was drunk. (The academy suspended and placed King on three year's active duty because of the incident.) King, who says he was told by doctors that the resulting concussion will prevent him from playing football again, named the bodyguards, the airport and a taxi dispatcher as codefendants and is seeking unspecified damages.