All other NFL-related trademarks are trademarks of the National Football League. [1] He was posthumously inducted into the UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame. [15] However, in the 1960 presidential election, Washington voted for John F. Kennedy instead of Nixon and tended to vote for Democrats for the rest of his life, but he never declared a political party affiliation. It was the first UCLA–USC rivalry football game with national implications. [23] His alma mater Lincoln High School has annually awarded the Kenny Washington Trophy to the school's best football player since 1949. He is buried in Evergreen Cemetery. The night before Nixon's crushing victory over Congresswoman Helen Gahagan Douglas, the candidate – a great football fan – spent the evening at Washington's south Los Angeles home playing music and trying to relax. [4] Instead, Washington coached football at UCLA and joined the LAPD. Washington, Strode, and Robinson made up three of the four backfield players that year. He had one son, Kenny Jr., who played professional baseball. UCLA teammates have commented how strong Washington was when confronted with racial slurs and discrimination. Former offensive tackle Tony Jones, a one-time Pro Bowler and two-time Super Bowl champion, passed away at the age of 54, the Broncos announced Friday. Washington died of polyarteritis nodosa on June 24, 1971, at the age of 52 in Los Angeles, California. Inducted into the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame in 1956 but not, at this writing, into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Washington suffered from circulatory problems in later years. His No. He immediately became one of the biggest stars for the Los Angeles Rams. [12], Prior to his first NFL season Washington underwent surgery in both knees (his fifth knee surgery overall – as a child he contracted rickets and was once hit by car[4]), having torn cartilage removed from his left knee and what was characterized in the press as "a growth" from his right. Major League Baseball and the entire sporting world will celebrate Jackie Robinson Day today, and it's a well-deserved honor for one of our nation's heroes. 13 jersey was retired by UCLA in 1956, and that same year Washington was inducted into the College Hall of Fame. The day is also a tad bittersweet because it comes with a reminder that we, as football historians, have dropped the ball for one of our own, Kenny Washington. He also became a skillful golfer. Kenny “Kingfish” Washington … [9][10], When the Cleveland Rams moved to Los Angeles, the team sought to play in the publicly owned Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum – a decision which created immediate pressure that the team be racially integrated, since black taxpayers as well as white had paid for construction of the facility. [2], According to Time magazine's coverage of the 1940 College All-Star Game, Washington was "considered by West Coast fans the most brilliant player in the US last year. Athletic Hall of Fame.. [24] [25] Washington DC Bureau; ... Kenny is surrounded by football legends at Pro Football Hall of Fame ... Browns fever captured in ‘ice’ on Fox 8 News in the Morning Video. He ran head-first into not only defenders who didn't want him in the game, but also the civil rights movement. Kenny Washington Honors. I am asking you, the members of the senior committee, to nominate Washington for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Kenny Washington led the nation in total yards in his senior year at UCLA in 1939, but had to wait seven years for the opportunity to play in the NFL. John Hicks, a 2001 College Football Hall of Fame inductee and a two-time First Team All-American and undeniably one of the most outstanding Ohio State football players of all time, died Oct. 29, 2016, after a long illness. One of only two players (with Hall of Famer Marcus Allen) to win Heisman Trophy, AP Rookie of the Year, AP Player of the Year and a Super Bowl title in his career. [1] Edgar "Blue" Washington, who played Negro league baseball, was his father but he was raised by his grandmother Susie and his uncle Rocky, the first black uniformed lieutenant in the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). Other black athletes who would come after him would endure a similar plight. [2] He led both teams to city championships in the same calendar year. Pro Football Hall of Fame via AP Images Born on August 31, 1918, Kenny Washington grew up in Los Angeles' Lincoln Heights neighborhood. An honor that has long eluded him. Pacific Coast Professional Football League, List of NCAA major college football yearly total offense leaders, "The NFL was segregated, until Kenny Washington broke the color barrier in Los Angeles", "Forgotten hero: Washington broke NFL's color barrier in 1946", "Teammates Recall Jackie Robinson's Legacy", "First American NFL Players Helped Break Down Barriers", "Los Angeles and the Reintegration of the NFL", "Los Angeles Coliseum Court of Honor Plaques", "Remembering forgotten hero Kenny Washington", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Kenny_Washington_(American_football)&oldid=1001421889, Players of American football from Los Angeles, Burials at Evergreen Cemetery, Los Angeles, Pages containing links to subscription-only content, Short description is different from Wikidata, All Wikipedia articles written in American English, NFL player missing current team parameter, Infobox NFL biography articles missing alt text and caption, Infobox NFL biography articles with old NFL.com URL, Wikipedia articles needing page number citations from March 2019, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Career statistics and player information from, This page was last edited on 19 January 2021, at 16:30. [2] He was a star at both baseball and football at Abraham Lincoln High School,[3] where he was nicknamed "Kingfish" after a character in the radio show Amos 'n' Andy. Some might nod when they hear the name. And that's just wrong. Kenny Washington received numerous honors but they were primarily related to his time at UCLA. Washington, Strode and two other men broke through pro football's unofficial color barrier that season. The Class of 2021 will be enshrined on Sunday, Aug. 8, in Canton. He was inducted to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1956 and his number 13 jersey was the first to be retired at UCLA. The bronze plaques representing each of the classes inducted are permanently on display at the Vern Riffe Building, 2nd Floor located at 77 South High Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215. The Hall of Fame needs to acknowledge, recognize, celebrate and honor Kenny Washington’s contribution. Each player will receive a Hall of Fame plaque based on the pithy ones that the Hall used to use back at the start. There is some vague recollection of Washington throughout the league. If the goal of the Pro Football Hall of Fame is to preserve its history, we need to start right now with Washington. One reason is because for most of the 20th century, baseball was by far the top sport in the U.S., and another was that his NFL career was a short three years. Following his athletic career, Washington was affiliated with the Los Angeles Police Department. NFL footage © NFL Productions LLC. Two months after being fired by the Lions, Matt Patricia is returning to the New England Patriots in a new role that will combine scouting and working with the Patriots' coaching staff, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Friday. Every year since 2011, Abraham Lincoln High School holds a memorial football game on the anniversary of Washington's death. 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