Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Countdown 2010: 70 Days to Go

70: Lynn Hughes, Quarterback/Safety #16 (1964 – 1966)

The road to an All-American career at safety for Lynn Hughes did not begin on the practice field covering receivers and tackling running backs in the secondary. Instead, Hughes began his Georgia career at quarterback during Vince Dooley’s first season at Georgia in 1964. Splitting time with Preston Ridlehuber, Hughes ended up the Dawgs leading passer in ’64, throwing for 408 yards. His best game came against Clemson, when he not only ran for a touchdown, but also scored on an interception return.

During the 1965 season, Hughes switched his main position from quarterback to safety. Hughes would enjoy a successful season in ’65, a year which he was also named an Academic All-American. During his senior season in 1966, he would be a key member of Vince Dooley’s first SEC Championship squad. His ability to play both offense and defense was on display, as he made key plays in two SEC come from behind victories displaying all of his talents.

During the homecoming game against Kentucky, Georgia trailed the Wildcats 15-14 at the half. When starting quarterback Kirby Moore went down with an injury, Dooley called on Hughes to help lead the Dawgs to victory. He capped a long scoring drive with a 10 yard touchdown run and the Dawgs would go on to the victory. With the score tied at 10 a few weeks later against the Gators, Hughes intercepted a Florida pass and returned it for a touchdown, leading to another Georgia victory.

Following the season, Hughes was named to the first team All-SEC and All-American teams. After playing in the NFL with the New York Giants, he returned to the SEC as an assistant at Vanderbilt and later back at Georgia.

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