Golden Boy

Golden Boy

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Paul Hornung was football's "Golden Boy" -- handsome, talented, and fabulously successful. He had a great career at Notre Dame, where he won the Heisman Trophy (the only player ever to win it on a team with a losing record). He was the #1 draft pick in the NFL and went to the Green Bay Packers, a terrible team soon transformed by a new head coach, Vince Lombardi. Hornung's Packer teams would become a dynasty, and ten of his teammates (as well as Lombardi) would eventually join him in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Hornung led the NFL in scoring from 1959 to 1961, setting a single-season scoring record in 1960 that still stands. He was Player of the Year in 1960 and 1961.
Hornung always loved the good life. He had girlfriends all across the country, and he was a regular at Toots Shor's and at clubs in Chicago and Los Angeles. A frustrated Lombardi once asked him whether he wanted to be a player or a playboy, and his teammates joked about his Hollywood ambitions. On game days Hornung was always ready to play, but the night after a game -- and sometimes even the night before -- was a different story.
For Hornung, the good life came at a price: his gambling cost him a year's suspension from the NFL in 1963. He accepted his punishment, refusing to implicate anyone else, but in this autobiography he reveals just how widespread gambling was in the NFL.
However, on the playing field Hornung and his Packer teammates made football history. Bart Starr, Max McGee, Jim Taylor, Ray Nitschke, Jerry Kramer, Jim Ringo, Ron Kramer, Forrest Gregg, Fuzzy Thurston, Willie Davis, Herb Adderley, Willie Wood -- they're all here, and Hornung has great stories to tell about them and about some of their biggest games together.
Golden Boy is a must-read for football fans, a colorful, candid slice of pigskin history from one of the game's immortal legends.
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  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 304 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743266192 | 
  • October 2004
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