Maxie Baughan, a member of the College Football Hall of Fame out of Georgia Tech who was a nine-time Pro Bowl selection in the NFL, died Saturday. He was 85.
According to a news release from Georgia Tech, Baughan died in Ithaca, New York.
Baughan starred at Georgia Tech from 1957 to 1959 under coach Bobby Dodd, starting at center and linebacker, WSB-TV reported. He was a first-team All-American selection in 1959 and was named the Southeastern Conference’s lineman of the year, according to the television station.
Baughan was also a two-time all-SEC honoree.
According to Georgia Tech, Baughan was the Yellow Jackets’ team captain in 1959 and set a record with 124 tackles. He was named co-MVP of the 1960 Gator Bowl.
“On behalf of the entire Georgia Tech football family, I offer my deepest condolences to the Baughan family,” Georgia Tech head coach Brent Key said in a statement. “Maxie is one of the most legendary figures in our program’s history and a shining example of what a Tech Man is. We are heartbroken by his passing.”
Baughan was selected in the second round of the 1960 NFL draft by the Philadelphia Eagles (20th overall), according to Pro-Football-Reference.com.
He played six seasons with the Eagles and was part of Philadelphia’s 1960 NFL championship team, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. He was traded to Los Angeles in 1966 and spent five seasons with the Rams. He retired in 1972 to become an assistant at Georgia Tech, but returned to the NFL in 1974, where he was a player-coach for Washington, according to the newspaper.
Baughan spent six seasons as head coach at Cornell University from 1983 to 1988 and then was an NFL assistant with the Baltimore Colts, Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Baltimore Ravens, WSB reported.
Baughan is among 12 candidates in the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s seniors category. Members of the committee will meet to determine finalists for the Class of 2024, The Associated Press reported. He was a semifinalist in 2022, and is also a member of the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame and the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame, WSB reported.
Born in Forkland, Alabama, on Aug. 3, 1938, Baughan attended Bessemer High School before enrolling at Georgia Tech. He graduated from the Atlanta-based university with a degree in industrial engineering, the school said.
“Maxie Baughan was a fierce and highly intelligent competitor, establishing himself as the best center in the nation in 1959,” National Football Foundation Chairman Archie Manning said in a release. “His passion for the game continued throughout his lifetime, and he mentored countless great players over the years, coaching both in college and the NFL. He became an integral part of our game, and we are deeply saddened to learn of his passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.”