West Virginia native and former WVU offensive lineman Chuck Howley was named a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame earlier today. Howley, who played in the NFL in a career that spanned three decades from 1958-73, was alongside 11 others for the senior committee’s finalists.
The Seniors Committee has reduced its list of Finalists for the Class of 2023 to 12.
— Pro Football Hall of Fame (@ProFootballHOF) July 27, 2022
Howley, a native of Wheeling, graduated from WVU in 1957. He was an offensive lineman while there, but played linebacker in the NFL. That switch would be unheard of in today’s game, but it demonstrates the type on athlete he was.
He is the only athlete in school history to letter in five different sports, again something that would be unheard of in today’s era. In addition to football he lettered in track, wrestling, gymnastics and swimming.
He was a three-time All-Southern Conference for football and won a conference title in one-meter diving. He was inducted into the school’s athletic hall of fame in 1991.
He was selected seventh overall in the 1958 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears, but only spent two seasons with the team when he suffered, what was thought to be, a career-ending knee-injury early into the 1959 season.
He returned to West Virginia in 1960 and worked at a gas station before an alumni game allowed him to showcase his football ability after the knee-injury. He was then traded to the Dallas Cowboys where he played until 1973.
During his NFL career he was a six-time Pro Bowler (1965-69, 1971), five-time First-Team All-Pro (1966-70), a Second-Team All-Pro (1971) and a Super Bowl MVP in Super Bowl V.
He appeared in 180 games in his NFL career with 25 interceptions and 18 fumble recoveries.