NFL legend & New Haven native Floyd Little dies at 78


NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — NFL star and Pro Football Hall of Fame legend from New Haven, Floyd Little, has died.

The Pro-Football Hall of Fame reports Little died Friday at his home in Las Vegas. He was 78. Little was battling cancer since May and went into hospice care back in November.

Little attended Hillhouse High School in New Haven, and the school’s Athletic Center was dedicated in his name in 2011. The New Haven Public Schools Athletic Director Erik Patchkofsky released a statement regarding Little’s passing saying,

“It is with great sadness to hear about the passing of Hillhouse, Syracuse standout and NFL Hall of Fame legend Floyd Little. Floyd was an outstanding football player who went on to earn national fame. His tremendous character has infused the fabric of the New Haven sports community. He will be greatly missed but his legacy will live on forever in the Floyd Little Athletics Center.”

Little attended Syracuse University, where he was an All-American student-athlete. Syracuse Chancellor Kent Syverud released a statement saying in part,

“Floyd mentored countless student-athletes, and dedicated his time, energy and resources to improving the lives of others.”

President-elect Joe Biden has responded to Little’s passing as well. Biden said he and Little were students at Syracuse together.

Biden went on to say, “Over the years, I got to know the man behind the number. He was full of character, decency, and integrity. I will miss my friend. The entire Biden family sends our love to DeBorah and the Little family.”

Little went on to play for the NFL’s Denver Broncos from 1967-1975. In 2010, he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

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