John Wooten

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John Wooten
No. 60, 67
Position: Guard
Personal information
Date of birth: (1936-12-05) December 5, 1936 (age 78)
Place of birth: Riverview, Texas
Career information
High school: Carlsbad (New Mexico)
College: Colorado
NFL draft: 1959 / Round: 5 / Pick: 53
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played: 136
Fumbles recovered: 3
Stats at NFL.com
Stats at pro-football-reference.com

John B. Wooten (born December 5, 1936) is a former American football guard who played nine professional seasons in the National Football League (NFL) for the Cleveland Browns and Washington Redskins. Wooten played college football at the University of Colorado and was drafted in the fifth round of the 1959 NFL Draft.

Early life[edit]

Wooten was born in Riverview, Texas.[1] His family then moved to Carlsbad, New Mexico and he attended segregated schools through the 9th grade, before attending the newly-integrated Carlsbad High School.[1] Wooten first played high school football as a sophomore in 1952, and he eventually earned All-State honors in football and basketball.[1] He received offers to play football at Dartmouth College, Florida A&M University, UCLA, the University of New Mexico and New Mexico State University, but chose to go to the University of Colorado at Boulder instead.[1]

College career[edit]

Wooten attended and played college football at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He joined the team in 1955 and became the second African-American varsity football player in the program's history (Franklin Clarke was the first).[1] As a senior, Wooten earned American Football Coaches Association All-America honors and was selected to play in the Chicago College All-Star Game. He is believed to be one of the first African-Americans to earn All-America honors playing a position in the interior line.[1] He graduated in 1959 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education.

Honors[edit]

Wooten was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2012.[2] He was also selected as one of 25 members of Colorado's All-Century Team in 1989, honoring the school’s first 100 years of intercollegiate football.[1]

Professional career[edit]

Cleveland Browns[edit]

Wooten was drafted in the fifth round (53rd overall) of the 1959 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns, where he would play left guard for the next nine seasons. During that time, he blockeed for Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown, widely regarded as one of the top running backs in NFL history. Brown led the league in rushing for six of the seven seasons Wooten served as one his blockers, and was the NFL Most Valuable Player in 1965 with 1,544 yards and a league-best 21 touchdowns.[1] The Browns defeated the Baltimore Colts, 27–0, to win the 1964 NFL Championship Game. They also played in the 1965 NFL Championship Game and lost to the Green Bay Packers, 23–12. In 1979, he was named to the Browns All-Time All-Star Team. In 2010, Wooten was inducted into the Browns Ring of Honor, as well as the Browns Legends program.[1]

Washington Redskins[edit]

In July 1968, Wooten demanded a trade from the Browns after a dispute with the organization involving an all-white Browns' golf outing in Ashland, Ohio.[3] On July 19, 1968, he was released from the Browns by owner Art Modell. The Washington Redskins signed Wooten in August, and he played his final year with them.[4]

Front office[edit]

After retiring from football, Wooten worked for a short time as a sports agent. He then became the Director of Pro Scouting for the Dallas Cowboys for 17 years, before joining the Philadelphia Eagles as Vice President for Player Personnel.[1] In 1998, Wooten became the Assistant Director of Pro and College Scouting for the Baltimore Ravens until his retirement in 2003.[1]

Fritz Pollard Alliance[edit]

In 2003, Wooten became the Chairman of the Fritz Pollard Alliance, an affinity group who works in conjunction with the National Football League as it relates to minority hiring in coaching, scouting and front office positions.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Wooten is a resident of Arlington, Texas, where he lives with his wife. They have five children and five grandchildren.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "John Wooten Named To College Football Hall Of Fame". University of Colorado at Boulder. May 15, 2012. Retrieved 2015-05-07. 
  2. ^ "Hall of Fame Inductee Detail - John Wooten". College Football Hall of Fame. Retrieved 2015-05-07. 
  3. ^ "Ryan Cut by Browns; Free to Deal". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Google News Archives). September 10, 1969. p. 9. Retrieved May 7, 2015. 
  4. ^ "John B. Wooten". Oldest Living Pro Football Players. Retrieved 2015-05-08. 

External links[edit]