Ron Vander Kelen
Vander Kelen (#15, white) in the 1963 Rose Bowl
|No. 11, 15|
November 6, 1939|
August 14, 2016 (aged 76)|
|AFL draft:||1963 / Round: 21 / Pick: 163|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
Ronald Vander Kelen (November 6, 1939 – August 14, 2016) was an American football quarterback. He played at the collegiate level at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and is best known for his MVP performance in the 1963 Rose Bowl, where he broke several Rose Bowl records, some of which still stand. In that game, he orchestrated a legendary fourth quarter comeback attempt against the USC Trojans in the first #1 (USC) versus #2 (Wisconsin) bowl game in college football history. Vander Kelen was inducted into the Rose Bowl Hall of Fame in 1991.
Vander Kelen played at the collegiate level at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and is best known for his MVP performance in the 1963 Rose Bowl, where he broke several Rose Bowl records, some of which still stand. In that game, he orchestrated a legendary fourth quarter comeback attempt against the USC Trojans in the first #1 (USC) versus #2 (Wisconsin) bowl game in college football history.
In August 1963, he was named the starter in the Chicago College All-Star Game (a game which pitted college all-stars selected from the graduating class from the previous season against the NFL champion) over a group of quarterbacks which included 1962 Heisman Trophy winner Terry Baker. The college all-stars defeated the Green Bay Packers 20-17, with a 74-yard touchdown completion to his college teammate, Pat Richter, providing the winning touchdown. Vander Kelen was named the game MVP. The 1963 game would prove to be the last time the college all-stars defeated the NFL champion in this series.
He was not drafted in the 1963 NFL Draft and drafted in the 21st round of the 1963 AFL Draft by the New York Jets. He entered into a contract with the NFL's Minnesota Vikings as an undrafted free agent. He was the backup to Fran Tarkenton from 1963 to 1966 and competed for the starting position after Tarkenton was traded to the New York Giants in 1967. Vander Kelen also saw playing time in the CFL with the 1968 Calgary Stampeders.
- "Ron Vander Kelen NFL Football Statistics". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2016-08-16.
- "History - Rose Bowl Hall of Fame Inductees". www.tournamentofroses.com. Archived from the original on October 26, 2011. Retrieved 2016-08-16.
- John Underwood (September 9, 2010). "Vander Kelen". Sports Illustrated. Archived from the original on November 27, 2012. Retrieved July 4, 2011.
- Potrykus, Jeff (August 14, 2016). "Ron Vander Kelen dies at age 76". Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 2016-08-16.
- Galloway, Jason (August 16, 2016). "Badgers football: Former UW quarterback Ron Vander Kelen dies at 76". Wisconsin State Journal. Retrieved 2016-08-16.
- Peters, Craig (August 16, 2016). "Vikings Send Condolences to Family of Ron Vander Kelen". Minnesota Vikings. Retrieved 2016-08-17.