Legendary Roughriders’ Running Back George Reed Passes Away at 83

(ReliableNews.org) – Sometimes American football players travel to other countries to play the sport. That’s what player George Reed did in the 1960s and he became a legend. Now, he has passed away.

On October 1, Reed passed away in Saskatchewan, Canada. The 83-year-old died the day before his 84th birthday. Reed was born in Mississippi in 1939. When he was about 3 years old, his family moved to a suburb of Seattle, Washington. He grew up in that state and went on to play basketball, baseball, and football in high school. In 1958, he enrolled at Washington State University and debuted on its football team the following year.

In 1960, Reed dislocated his ankle and wasn’t able to play at all in his junior year. He was back the following year as team captain and was named the team’s most inspirational player. Following college, Reed went to Canada to play for the Saskatchewan Roughriders — where he would go on to spend his entire football career.

For 13 years, Reed played with the Roughriders as a running back. During his rookie season, he rushed for 751 years. In 1965, he was named the Western Conference’s Most Outstanding Player, becoming the first Roughrider to ever win the title. Three years later, in 1968, he was once again named the Western Conference’s Most Outstanding Player after he scored 16 touchdowns, including four in a single game. He won the title again the next year, making it his third time in five seasons to be called the most outstanding.

In 1976, after beating multiple records during his career, he announced his retirement. That year, the team retired his jersey number during a halftime ceremony. Three years later, he was inducted into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame and Canadian Football Hall of Fame. In 1980, he was inducted into the Washington State University Athletic Hall of Fame, and in 1984, he entered the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.

Reed was given the highest civilian honor in Canada when he was invited to be a member of the Order of Canada in 1978. He went on to win numerous other awards. The Roughriders honored him in a post on X, formerly Twitter, calling him one of the team’s “greatest players of all time.”

Journalist Rob Vanstone reminded people of what Roughriders’ late head coach, Eagle Keys, once said about Reed: “Only God knows if He’ll plant another seed, to produce a football player as good as George Reed.”

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