Monday, October 03, 2005

Notre Dame alum will be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in Decembe

EASTON, Pa. ( - John Huarte, the winner of the Heisman Trophy in 1964, spoke with the Lafayette offense on Monday at the Maroon Club Strength Center.

A 1965 graduate of Notre Dame, Huarte threw for 2,062 yards and 16 touchdowns as a senior to claim All-American honors and the Heisman Memorial Trophy, awarded to the outstanding college football player in the nation. He set 14 new records for the Fighting Irish in 1964.

I told the players that these are the best days of their lives, and I related my own college experience to them, Huarte said. At Notre Dame, I scrimmaged for three years with the varsity team, in 1961 through 1963, before I had a chance to start. Then in 1964, we had a new coach (Ara Parseghian) and as the starter we went 9-1.

In speaking to the younger players on the team, I told them to hang in there. You never know what's going to happen and when you'll get your opportunity.

Huarte, from Pacific Palisades, Calif., was on the East Coast for a golf trip with his next-door neighbor and Lafayette Board of Trustee member Bill Rutledge '63.

It was a tremendous honor to meet a Heisman Trophy winner, said head coach Frank Tavani, a life-long Notre Dame fan. John had an exceptional message, particularly for our younger players who might not be seeing much of the field right now. We impress on our guys that you have to be ready when it's your turn, and John is a great example of that. It was a great opportunity to be able to bring him on campus.

I am very impressed with Lafayette and the things that are going on in the football program, Huarte mentioned. They have a great operation, with (Director of Athletics) Bruce McCutcheon and Coach Tavani.

Huarte nudged out Tulsa quarterback Jerry Rhome for the 1964 Heisman, while his primary receiver for the Irish, end Jack Snow, was fifth in the voting. Other notables in the top 10 included Hall of Fame linebacker Dick Butkus (Illinois, third) and Wake Forest running back Brian Piccolo, who finished tenth.

Huarte is a member of the 2005 College Football Hall of Fame Division I-A Class, and will be inducted into the hall on Dec. 6, 2005.


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