The Illinois men's tennis coach will turn a year older next weekend.
Illini Legend Lists & Lore: Perry Moss
Sixty-six years ago, quarterback Perry Moss transferred from the University of Tulsa to the University of Illinois. He served in the U.S. Air Force between his playing time at Tulsa and Illinois. At Tulsa, Moss was a tailback on the team that defeated Georgia Tech in the 1945 Orange Bowl. His highlight as an Illini player came in the 1947 Rose Bowl, when twice-beaten Illinois stunned undefeated UCLA 45-14. Trailing the Bruins 7-6 after the first quarter, Moss masterfully quarterbacked Illinois for the remaining three periods, lambasting UCLA by a 39-7 advantage the rest of the way. He was named to the All-Big Ten all-star squad, and the Green Bay Packers drafted him in the 13th round of the 1948 NFL draft. Moss played one season for the Packers, then returned to Illinois to become a part-time coach on Ray Eliot's staff. He moved to the University of Miami in 1955, serving as the football team's backfield coach and also as head baseball coach. From there, Moss coached at Wisconsin (1958). In 1959, he was named head football coach and athletic director at Florida State. From 1960 to '62, Moss became head coach of the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League. In 1968, he became head coach at Marshall University, compiling a 0-9-1 record before being forced to resign because of NCAA recruiting violations. In the early 1980s, Moss coached the West Virginia Rockets of the semi-pro American Football Association. In 1991, he was named the first coach of the Orlando Predators of the Arena Football League and compiled a 59-25 record before leaving the team in 1997 at the age of 71. Born on Aug. 4, 1926, he is now 86 years old.
Sunday: Mary Therese McDonnell, volleyball (26)
Monday: Scott Studwell, football (58)
Tuesday: Jasper Strong, football (40)
Wednesday: Perdita Felicien, track & field (32)
Thursday: Janelle Hughes, basketball (28)
Friday: Tal Brody, basketball (69)
Saturday: Brad Dancer, tennis coach (42)
By Mike Pearson, author of Illini Legends, Lists & Lore and assistant athletic director at Miami (Ohio)
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