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Merlin Olsen Dies at Age 69

Discussion in 'NFL Zone' started by bbgun, Mar 11, 2010.

  1. bbgun

    bbgun Benched

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    Football and Television Star Merlin Olsen Dies at Age 69
    AP


    Pro Football Hall of Famer and former television actor Merlin Olsen has died. He was 69. Olsen was diagnosed with mesothelioma last year.

    Utah State University assistant athletic media relations director Zach Fisher says Olsen died Wednesday night.

    Olsen was an All-American at Utah State and a first-round draft pick of the Los Angles Rams in 1962.

    He was part of the Rams' "Fearsome Foursome" defensive line, which set an NFL record for the fewest yards allowed during a 14-game season in 1968.

    Olsen is still the Rams' all-time leader in career tackles with 915.

    Olsen moved on to acting with roles in "Little House on the Prairie" and later his own series, "Father Murphy," which ran from 1981 to 1983.
  2. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to hear that. I enjoyed watching him play he was a heck of a player on the field and a good man off the field.
  3. CliffnMesquite

    CliffnMesquite Active Member

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    May he rest in peace.
  4. ABQCOWBOY

    ABQCOWBOY Moderator Staff Member

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    Damn! I hate to hear that. I can not wait till Cancer gets it's butt kicked and we are finally rid of this damned disease. Olsen was one of the really good guys. That's a real shame.

    RIP Merlin Jay Olsen
  5. bbgun

    bbgun Benched

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    Here's a longer story that mentions his broadcasting years with Dick Enberg.


    SALT LAKE CITY - Pro Football Hall of Famer and former television actor Merlin Olsen has died. He was 69.

    Utah State University assistant athletic media relations director Zach Fisher says Olsen died Wednesday night at a Los Angeles hospital.

    He was diagnosed with mesothelioma last year.

    Olsen was an All-American at Utah State and a first-round draft pick of the Los Angles Rams in 1962.

    The burley giant from northern Utah joined Deacon Jones, Lamar Lundy and Rosey Grier on the Rams' storied "Fearsome Foursome" defensive line known for either stopping or knocking backward whatever offenses it faced. The Rams set an NFL record for the fewest yards allowed during a 14-game season in 1968.

    Olsen was rookie of the year for the Rams in 1962 and is still the Rams' all-time leader in career tackles with 915. He was named to 14 consecutive Pro Bowls, a string that started his rookie year.

    Olsen was also an established television actor with a role on "Little House on the Prairie," then starring in his own series, "Father Murphy," from 1981 to 1983 and the short-lived "Aaron's Way" in 1988.

    Olsen was a consensus All-American at Utah State and won the 1961 Outland Trophy as the nation's best interior lineman. The Rams drafted Olsen third overall in 1962 and he spent the next 15 years with the team before retiring in 1976.

    Utah State honored Olsen in December by naming the football field at Romney Stadium "Merlin Olsen Field." Because of his illness, Olsen's alma mater didn't want to wait until football season and made the announcement during halftime of a basketball game.

    Olsen was well enough to attend, but did not speak at the event. He stood and smiled as he waved to fans during a standing ovation and chants of "Merlin Olsen!" and "Aggie Legend!"

    Utah State is also planning a statue of Olsen at the southeast corner of the stadium.

    The Rams also honored Olsen during a game Dec. 20, with a video tribute narrated by Dick Enberg, Olsen's longtime broadcast partner. Olsen did not attend because of his health. His name was already part of the Ring of Fame inside the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis along with other franchise standouts.

    He was voted NFC defensive lineman of the year in 1973 and the NFL MVP in 1974, and was voted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1982.
  6. jazzcat22

    jazzcat22 Well-Known Member

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    A co-worker just told me he seen where Merlin Olsen just died of cancer.
    I haven't looked for any sources yet.

    It's on NFL.com breaking news, top of the page.
  7. dcfanatic

    dcfanatic Benched

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  8. hipfake08

    hipfake08 Well-Known Member

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    Great player - great person in public eye.
  9. Doomsday

    Doomsday Rising Star

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  10. RS12

    RS12 Well-Known Member

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    One of the greatest DL to ever play.
  11. miamicowboy21

    miamicowboy21 Active Member

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    Olsen and enberg were a great team.. R.I.P.
  12. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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  13. DallasGirl50

    DallasGirl50 New Member

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    Ah. How sad. I always really thought he was a fine player and off the field I enjoyed watching him on TV. Crap.
  14. bbgun

    bbgun Benched

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    A number of pro football writers think he was better than Lilliy. That's how good he was.
  15. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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  16. RS12

    RS12 Well-Known Member

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    sen

    Lilly, Olsen, Page are three of the top five and played same era.
  17. theebs

    theebs Believe!!!!

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    I loved olsen in the booth with enberg and then stockton at cbs. My sister was obsessed with little house on the prairie so I ended up liking him on there too.

    Interesting note about his broadcast career.

    It started in the 1980 preseason game Houston at Dallas at texas stadium.
    It ended December 22, 1991 Atlanta @ Dallas at Texas Stadium.
  18. Faerluna

    Faerluna I'm Complicated

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    Mr. Garvey :(
  19. CanadianCowboysFan

    CanadianCowboysFan Lightning Rod

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    He had that nice soothing voice from the booth.
  20. Hostile

    Hostile Peace Zone Supporter

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    I genuinely liked him. It was hard not to.

    His first venture into film was a John Wayne movie called "The Undefeated." He played a former Rebel soldier named Little George.

    One of John Wayne's riders, a former Union soldier, Bobby Joe, is whipping all the former Rebel soldier at leg wrestling. A Rebel Sergeant mentions that they have a solider that no one can whip named Little George. Bobby Joe replies, "Little George. I hope he's got some meat on him."

    When they show the camera angle of Little George arriving he looks 7 feet tall. Bobby Joe says, "Colonel, that's the biggest Reb I ever saw." John Wayne says, "biggest anything I ever saw."

    He was that in real life too.

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