Charlie Waters

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Charlie Waters
refer to caption
Waters in January 2014
No. 41
Position: Safety / Cornerback
Personal information
Date of birth: (1948-09-10) September 10, 1948 (age 67)
Place of birth: Miami, Florida
Height: 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight: 193 lb (88 kg)
Career information
High school: North Augusta (SC)
College: Clemson
NFL draft: 1970 / Round: 3 / Pick: 66
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Interceptions: 41
INT yards: 584
Interception TDs: 2
Fumble Recoveries: 7
Games played: 160
Player stats at NFL.com
Player stats at PFR

Charlie Tutan Waters (born September 10, 1948) is a former American football player, a defensive back in the National Football League for twelve seasons, all with the Dallas Cowboys. He played college football at Clemson University.

Early years[edit]

Born in Miami, Florida, Waters' family moved to South Carolina where he attended North Augusta High School, starring as a football and baseball athlete.

He was a split end early in his football career before being converted to a quarterback. He was selected to play in the 1965 Shrine Bowl and graduated in 1966.[1]

College career[edit]

Waters signed a football scholarship at Clemson University and by the spring of 1968 as a junior, he was competing with Billy Ammons for the starting quarterback job. When Ammons hurt his knee in spring practice, Waters won the position. The defending Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) champions started the season 0-3-1. When Ammons’ knee healed, he took over the starting job and Waters moved to split end for the remaining 15 games of his college career. As a senior he caught 44 passes for 738 yards, and even though his season was cut short with a shoulder separation,[2] his record stood until Jerry Butler broke it in 1977.[3]

A three-year letterman, Waters was an All-ACC selection in 1969 at wide receiver as a senior.[4] During his Clemson career, he caught 68 passes for 1,196 yards and 17.1 yards per catch, to go along with four touchdown receptions. He still ranks eighth all-time for yards per reception and eighteenth all-time in receiving yards.

In 1981, he was inducted into the Clemson Athletic Hall of Fame. He was also inducted into the North Augusta Sports Hall of Fame and the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame.[5]

Professional career[edit]

Waters was selected by the Dallas Cowboys as a defensive back in the third round (66th overall) of the 1970 NFL draft. Although he was nearly released during training camp, his conversion was successful and became the backup to Cliff Harris at free safety as a rookie in 1970. He ended up starting 6 games after Harris had to serve military duty. Waters had 5 interceptions that season, as the Cowboys would go on to lose Super Bowl V. His performance was good enough to make the NFL all-rookie team in 1970.[6]

The next year he was moved to cornerback, where he struggled for four years in a backup and starter role.[7] Waters was eventually moved to Strong Safety in 1975 to replace Cowboys great Cornell Green, responding with 3 interceptions for 55 yards and a touchdown. That season, the Cowboys won the NFC Championship but lost Super Bowl X to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

As a strong safety he became an All-Pro and along with Cliff Harris, formed one of the best safety tandems of that era. He was like a coach on the field, with excellent instincts and the athletic ability, to become one of the league’s top defensive players of the decade.[8] He was selected All-Pro twice (1977 and 1978) and to the Pro Bowl three consecutive seasons (1976-1978).

In 1979, Waters suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee during a preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks, forcing him to sit out the entire year.[9] He returned in 1980 and had 5 interceptions. After getting 3 interceptions in 1981, he retired with 41 interceptions, third-most in franchise history. he also played in 25 playoff games, which ranks 5th in NFL history.

Waters played 12 seasons in the NFL, never experienced a losing season and only missed the playoffs once (1974) during that span. He played in five Super Bowls: V, VI, X, XII, and XIII, with victories in VI and XII. He holds the NFL record for most playoff interceptions with 9, including 3 in one playoff game, and has the unique achievement of blocking 4 punts in 2 consecutive games. He also was team's holder for placekicks.

To this day, he is one of the most revered and respected players in franchise history. He was selected to the Dallas Cowboys Silver Anniversary Team in 1984.

Personal life[edit]

Waters retired and became an NFL and college football coach. He was the defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos in 1993 and 1994, and then for the University of Oregon in 1995. Late that season, his oldest son Cody died in Eugene in his sleep on December 4, 1995, 12 days before his 18th birthday.[10] He and his wife Rosie Holotik, actress and model, at the time had two more sons, Ben and Cliff (after Cliff Harris).[11]

He was nominated for the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2001, but was not elected.

In 2006, the Dallas Cowboys hired Waters as the new color commentator for the Cowboys Radio Network, working alongside Brad Sham when former color commentator and Dallas quarterback Babe Laufenberg resigned his post to spend time with his family.

Outside of football, he works with longtime teammate Cliff Harris at a gas marketing company. In February 2007, Waters announced that he would be leaving the radio booth after only one season, citing a busy work schedule that did not allow him enough time to prepare for the game broadcasts.[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Waters Has been Impressive". Herald-Journal. March 19, 1967. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  2. ^ "Clemson-Carolina Tilt For Runners, Not The Receivers". Heral Journal. November 21, 1969. p. 9. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  3. ^ Vince Moore (April 8, 1972). "Waters Confirms Retirement". Herald-Journal/The Anderson Independent-Mail. p. 21. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  4. ^ Bob Bradley (September 3, 1970). "It Seems Strange, But Clemson Team Is Minus Head Tiger Frank Howard". The Item. p. 29. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  5. ^ "Waters Is Named To Hall Of Fame". April 20, 1980. p. 8. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  6. ^ Luther Gailard (March 14, 1971). "Lucky Breaks Help Waters". Herald-Journal. p. 7. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  7. ^ "Waters of Cowboys Plays Anywhere". The Milwaukee Journal. September 27, 1972. p. 108. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  8. ^ Dave Anderson (January 15, 1979). "Two Safeties Are Contrasts For Cowboys". The Dispatch. p. 30. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  9. ^ "Waters Undergoes Knee Surgery". Star News. August 14, 1979. p. 18. Retrieved February 19, 2016. 
  10. ^ "Autopsy fails to determine cause of death". Eugene Register-Guard. Associated Press. December 6, 1995. p. 1B. 
  11. ^ Bellamy, Ron (December 20, 1998). "Living with tragic loss". Eugene Register-Guard. p. 1F. 
  12. ^ Rob Phillips (February 15, 2007). "Waters Stepping Down From Radio Booth". Archived from the original on 2007-02-18. Retrieved February 16, 2007. 

External links[edit]