May 2, 1936|
Brooklyn, New York
|Died:||September 13, 2011(aged 75)|
|NFL Draft:||1957 / Round: 2 / Pick: 23|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
Saverio Frank "Sam" DeLuca (May 2, 1936 – September 13, 2011) was an American Professional Football offensive lineman in the American Football League and later a radio and television football coverage broadcaster. He played six seasons, three for the Los Angeles/San Diego Chargers and three for the New York Jets. He was a member of the 1969 New York Jet Championship season on IR. After football, he had a long career in sports broadcasting. He was the color commentator on the Jets’ radio broadcasts on WABC and then WOR before working NFL telecasts for NBC Sports and on the Jets’ pre-season games in the 1970s and 1980s. He went to Lafayette High School (Brooklyn) with Sandy Koufax, Larry King and Fred Wilpon.
DeLuca was a three-year letterman in football at the University of South Carolina from 1954 through 1956. As a starting offensive tackle, he played for head coaches Rex Enright in his first two seasons and Warren Giese as a senior. DeLuca graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Education in 1957. He was inducted into the University of South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005. He was also honored by the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame.
DeLuca was selected in the second round (23rd overall) by the New York Giants in the 1957 National Football League (NFL) Draft. He signed with the Giants for US $7,000 a year with a $500 bonus. He was to have succeeded starting offensive lineman Bill Austin, who was strongly considering retirement at the time. When Austin decided to play one more year, DeLuca was sent to the Canadian Football League's Toronto Argonauts, where he spent three seasons from 1957 through 1959.
DeLuca's first regular sportscasting assignment was hosting the pre- and postgame shows for New York Mets games on WABC-FM in 1968 and 1969. Phil Pepe, then a baseball writer for the Daily News who had graduated a year ahead of DeLuca at Lafayette High School, helped him prepare for the assignment.
- Slotnik, Daniel E. "Sam DeLuca, a Former Jet and Broadcaster, Is Dead at 75," The New York Times, Friday, September 16, 2011.
- University of South Carolina 2011 Football Media Guide.
- Benjamin, Scott. "Profile of Sam DeLuca," Musicradio77.com.
- Honorees and Inductees – South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame.
- "Former CFL and AFL lineman DeLuca dead at 75," The Canadian Press, Friday, September 16, 2011.[permanent dead link]
- Madden, Bill. "Sam DeLuca, Jets OL and teammate of Joe Namath turned broadcaster, dead of cancer at age 75," Daily News (New York City), Thursday, September 15, 2011.
- Benjamin, Scott. "Sam DeLuca On The New York Mets On WABC-FM And The 40th Anniversary Of Their 1969 World Championship," Musicradio77.com.