Former Ohio State Quarterback Tom Matte Dies at 82 Years Old

By Dan Hope on November 3, 2021 at 2:40 pm
Tom Matte
Ohio State University Archives

Former Ohio State quarterback and 1960 team MVP Tom Matte has died.

The former Buckeye, who went on to be an All-Pro running back for the Baltimore Colts, died at the age of 82, the Baltimore Ravens said Wednesday in a statement. Per the Baltimore Sun, Matte passed away at his home on Tuesday.

Matte began his career at Ohio State as a running back, but moved to quarterback in 1959 due to injuries at the position and went on to finish seventh in the Heisman Trophy standings in 1960, when he threw for 737 yards and eight touchdowns and ran for 682 yards and two touchdowns to lead Ohio State to a 7-2 record. He earned All-Big Ten honors and was selected with the Colts with the No. 7 overall pick in the 1961 NFL draft.

Matte was a running back for most of his 12 years with the Colts, running for 4,646 yards and 45 touchdowns and catching 249 passes for 2,869 yards and 12 touchdowns over the course of his career. He was a two-time Pro Bowler and earned first-team All-Pro honors in 1969 when he led the NFL with 1,422 yards from scrimmage and 13 touchdowns. His NFL career was perhaps most famous, though, for his three-game stint filling in at quarterback for three games in 1965, in which he led the Colts to two wins after their top two quarterbacks went down with injuries.

Following his playing career, Matte went on to be an analyst for Baltimore Ravens radio broadcasts from 1996-2005. Ravens coach John Harbaugh was among those who paid tribute to Matte on Wednesday.

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