Paul Hornung is a Hall of Famer and held one of the most coveted NFL records for over 46 years until this past Sunday when LaDainian Tomlinson broke it. Apparently the 70-year-old Mr. Hornung is not willing to part with his record, holding on to it tighter than a Social Security check. He told Jerry Magee of the San Diego Union Tribune, “You can’t compare what a player has done in 12 games to what players have done in 16.” The old codger continued, “If someone finishes with a greater average than mine, I’ll say ‘Fine he broke my record.’” Nice Paul, nice. A guy having one of the greatest season’s in NFL history has to hear about how you question the validity of him scoring 186 points in 14 games versus your 176 in 12 games. Hornung is also advocating having an asterisk next to the record, like the one put in place when Roger Maris broke Babe Ruth’s single season home run record in 1961.
For those who don’t know, in 1960 when Hornung broke the record he totaled 176 points as a halfback/kicker, a position not too common in today’s NFL. Other things not common in today’s NFL are leather helmets, the single wing offense, running backs with one-bar face masks and the drop-kick.
Basically we’re pissed about this because the NFL has recognized it as a new record, so Mr. Hornung could have taken the opportunity to be gracious, he didn’t. He could have said something about how Tomlinson was the type of player he hoped would break the record because he plays the game the right way, blah, blah. Instead he made the story about himself by saying he still had a claim to the record. You don’t hear Hank Aaron yelling about how Barry Bonds shouldn’t break his record (even though he should be). Why is that? Because Aaron realizes that the game is bigger than his record and history will tell you whether or not the record is valid.
Oh and if you aren’t sold on joining the “Paul Hornung sucks” bandwagon we think it’s our duty to let you know he also played college ball for Notre Dame.