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Former Grambling State legend and NFL Hall of Famer Willie Brown died Tuesday at the age of 78.

His NFL career spanned 16 seasons: the first four with the Denver Broncos and the remaining 12 seasons with the Oakland Raiders.


Brown’s most memorable moment was as a Raider during Super Bowl XI when he intercepted a pass from Fran Tarkenton of the Minnesota Vikings and returned it 75 yards for a touchdown.

“We will remember his life and contributions as a lesson in perseverance and true dedication,” said Grambling State University President Rick Gallot in a statement. “In the book of Psalms, the Bible says, ‘Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily.’ We know that Willie lived this and showed us all what it means to see our life’s work through.”

The Mississippi native finished his NFL career with 54 interceptions, which he returned for 472 yards and two touchdowns.

In addition to being an NFL Hall of Famer, Brown is a member of the Grambling Hall of Fame, the SWAC Hall of Fame, the Black College Football Hall of Fame, Louisiana Hall of Fame and the Mississippi Hall of Fame.

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