CFL Legend Pronounced Dead at 83 Years Old

( – Football fans and followers of the Canadian Football League and the Saskatchewan Roughriders are mourning the loss of legendary rusher George Reed, who died just one day before he would have turned 84 years old.

Reed, who is also a Hall of Famer, spent his whole CFL career with the Roughriders, and was part of the roster that won the Grey Cup in 1966. Reed played for the Saskatchewan team for 13 years – 1963 to 1975 – recording more than 16,000 rushing yards and scoring 134 touchdowns during his career, and was the leader in the league in rushing yards and touchdowns when he retired 1976. Mike Pringle has since overtaken Reed as the league’s rushing leader with his 16,425 rushing yards, but Reed still remains second and is still unsurpassed in rushing touchdowns.

Reed’s number 34 is also one of the few eight jersey numbers that the Roughriders have retired through the years. Reed also garnered the most outstanding player award for the CFL in 1965 and was inducted into the CFL Hall of Fame in 1979. He was also inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame, the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame, State of Washington Hall of Fame, as well as the Plaza of Honour in 1984, 1979, 1983, and 1987, respectively.

Reed also served as president of the CFL Players’ Association, a position he held from 1972 to 1981.

In a statement, CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie called Reed remarkable and a “giant,” given his longevity playing for the league and for a single team, as well as his passion for the sport that endeared him to many football fans even after his retirement. “It’s a hold on our hearts, which has endured year after year, decade after decade,” Ambrosie said. The commissioner also praised Reed’s humility and kindness, and how devoted he was to the community.

The Roughriders’ vice-president of football operations, Jeremy O’Day echoed praise for Redd, saying that it was his privilege to be able to work with the legend, and called Reed a “role model” and “true professional.”

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