I walked past a small pile of cards back in the vault I don’t know how many times without even a second thought. There’s so much peculiar stuff around here that I sometimes stop noticing. Anyway, a little while ago, for no special reason, I stopped and picked up the little stack. Oddly enough, they turned out to be football trading cards. Even then it took a minute for it to snap: they’re Rice grads who played professional football. It’s certainly not all of them, but there are a bunch. I’ll probably eventually post all of them (likely at random intervals) but just to get started here are a couple. First, Chuck LaTourette ’67:
Latourette won the 1966 George Martin award as Rice football’s MVP and the 1967 Bob Quin award, given annually to Rice’s outstanding male student-athlete. You can see a brief bio here. (Hat tip to Quin McWhirter).
And next, a name I recognize from my time in the Schulenburg area, Hugo Hollas ’68. Hollas won the George Martin award in 1967, the year after Latourette:
Bonus: George Martin was the Ye Old College Inn owner. Remember?
I am not much into collegiate sports but I did follow the link on Chuck Latourette. Back to the good ole days when we really had student athletes. During his pro days, he went to med school in Memphis during the week and played football over the weekends. But more surprising is that after only a few years in medical practice in Houston, he was shot and killed in his apartment. The newspaper report I found (not a Houston newspaper) was vague about the circumstances. Can anyone shed light on the details?
I knew both of them at Rice, and both were very nice guys in addition to their other achievements. I was second to Chuck in the intramural low hurdles one year. He couldn’t hurdle worth a flip but was VERY fast between the barriers.
I knew Chuck very well; he was in my class in Hanszen. He worked his way through medical school by punting and returning kicks for the Cardinals. Tragically, he was later killed by his wife, who offered substantial evidence that he had physically abused her and who was acquitted by a jury.
Barney L. McCoy, Hanszen 67
Hollas also died young – 49 rs old, if I recall. Apparently, he was the uncle of 1990’s Rice quarterback, Donald Hollas, who also played in the NFL.
Correct. The Houston Chronicle obituary (Sept. 8, 1995, reprinted here: http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/TXHARRIS/2002-05/1021681068 ) said Hugo died of a heart attack at his Schulenburg home and “was the first of five members of the Hollas family to play football for Rice.” It said the other four were his younger brother, Richard (who lettered in football at Rice 1971-73); Richard’s son, Shane (1989-92); and Will (1985-86, 1988) and Donald (1987-90), who are sons of an older brother, Winfred.
I have Don Gillis’s card. I went to church with him for several years at St,. Mark’s Episcopal. One year for his birthday, I bought two online, one for him and one for myself. He was the center for King Hill and Frank Ryan. In fact, I believe his wife told me he was Hill’s roommate at Rice. In the pros, he played from 1958 to 1961 for the Cardinals, first in Chicago, then in St, Louis. I’ll be glad to let you make a copy of the card if you’re interested.
Pingback: The 1964 Rice Owlets | Rice History Corner