Friday, July 23, 2010

Former N.C. State great Byrd dies

Former N.C. State football great Dennis Byrd, who will be enshrined into the College Football Hall of Fame in December, died Friday, N.C. State sports information director Annabelle Myers confirmed.

Byrd suffered a heart attack last week and had been hospitalized in Charlotte.

He played defensive tackle from 1964 to 1967 under Earle Edwards. He was a member of the famed "White Shoes" defense that led N.C. State to a share of the 1965 ACC title. He also was a member of the team that captured the Wolfpack's first postseason win, over Georgia in the 1967 Liberty Bowl.

Byrd was the first football player to be a three-time All-ACC selection, and in 1967 became the first N.C. State player to be selected a consensus All-American. He was drafted No. 6 overall in the 1968 NFL draft by the Boston Patriots, but lasted only two seasons because of a knee injury suffered at N.C. State.

After retiring from football, he embarked on a 30-year teaching and coaching career. A native of Lincolnton, he has four children and resided in Elizabeth City with his wife, Kimberly.

Ken Tysiac


Anonymous said...

I guess all that chain-smoking got to him,eh?