I’m not real sure yet, but I’m here for something.”. Defensively, future Chicago Bears star Dan Hampton shut down the Oklahoma running game. Broyles later said that he initially recruited Little to play quarterback since Joe Ferguson had recently graduated and entered the NFL. “You could bring up Steve’s name in a little-bitty town in Arkansas, and everybody’s going to know who he is.”. “Steve’s a legend, absolutely,” said Zach Hocker, the new Rams kicker. The then-St. Louis Cardinals drafted Little in the first round (in the first round! He was the youngest of four children born to Theodore Edward Schmitz and Dorothy Johanna (Ille). Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device. His career spanned 30 years and included TV credits such as The $10,000 Pyramid, The Young and the Restless and Big Little Lies. "It's really a sad story. Start your digital subscription for our lowest intro price - only $1 a month, Benjamin Hochman is a sports columnist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Gene Wojciechowski would go on to much sportswriting fame, but this earlier piece resonates even today. “He had a specialized van that he traveled with. Besides being a professional boxer, Little also sold used cars in Reading. His story is seldom told. Steven D. Little . Learn how and when to remove this template message, List of super middleweight boxing champions, "Steve Little - Lineal Super Middleweight Champion", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Steve_Little_(boxer)&oldid=959519233, BLP articles lacking sources from April 2016, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Pennsylvania State - Super Middleweight (1991), This page was last edited on 29 May 2020, at 05:17. Log in or Activate your account. And it was Hocker who, after all those years, who became Arkansas’ career scoring leader, surpassing Little. Get our lowest intro subscription rate ever. The lessons of perseverance. Little was the Lineal/WBA Super Middleweight champion in 1994. He was 59. In that game, Arkansas running back Roland Sales rushed for 205 yards, an Orange Bowl record that stood for twenty years, when Ahman Green of Nebraska gained one more for 206 yards. Little by little, I feel I got to know him, through everybody else.  Little is on the All-Century team at Arkansas, and is also listed as #11 on the list of greatest Arkansas football players of all time. “I’d heard of him a couple times when I was in high school, just because he was one of the best kickers to ever come out of Arkansas,” Hocker said from Rams Park, in a quiet moment. Stephen's Obituary. In 1975, Little helped Arkansas in its defeat of Georgia in the Cotton Bowl. You can cancel at any time. Steven Richard Little (February 19, 1956 – September 6, 1999) was an American football kicker and punter in the National Football League for the St. Louis Cardinals. Stephen Darren Little Devoted husband and father loved sports, cooking & his church Stephen Darren Little of Carteret, N.J., made his transition on July 5, 2020. In both bowl games, Little set team PAT records for bowl games, kicking four in each.
That’s a long, long way.”. An All American at Arkansas, where he tied an NCAA record with a 67-yard field goal, Little was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals with the 15th overall pick in 1978. A reader e-mailed me about the forgotten kicker. Little's problems off the field also caused him issues with the team; with a new head coach in 1980, he was released six games into the season on October 16, replaced by kicker Neil O'Donoghue. He is best known for his victories over former world champions Pipino Cuevas and Michael Nunn. Another source at the hospital witnessed a moment when Little was conscious. Steve "Lightning" Little (June 9, 1965 – January 30, 2000) was an American professional boxer. However Little's kicking abilities so impressed Broyles that they utilized him in that position. It’s who he was, for better or worse. He kicked an NCAA record-tying 67-yard field goal on October 15, 1977. But sure enough, on Sunday, Little’s old team plays in Little’s old team’s city.
Was Little’s accident caused by drunk driving? (AP Photo, File). I first heard of Little after the anniversary of Oscar Taveras’ death.
The Big Red cut him. Little was the Lineal/WBA Super Middleweight champion in 1994.
“And that was my passion, to kick there.”.  He is the third-highest drafted kicker in NFL history, behind Charlie Gogolak (6th, 1966) of Princeton and Russell Erxleben (11th, 1979) of Texas. And that very night, his car hydroplaned and slammed into a signpost along Interstate 270 at Ladue Road. He became a vaunted and daunting high school kicker. He didn’t lay down. The whole Steve Little story had to come down to this.". “He was asked if he had been drinking a little,” a source said.
But this leg, it was Little-like. Michael Steven “Steve” Lovelis, 73, of North Little Rock died Oct. 3, 2020. He also set a team career record for points with 280. Already a subscriber? Little served as both punter and placekicker; in his brief 33-game NFL career, he punted for a total of 4,809 yards, but had a disappointing field goal percentage of 48.1% over less than three seasons.
“Arkansas doesn’t have a pro team, so when you have a small state with SEC football, that is the pro team, that’s what everybody feeds off of.  During his final year at Arkansas Little played under head coach Lou Holtz. And in the Cardinals-Rams game, the St. Louis kicker probably will be Hocker, filling in for the injured Greg Zuerlein. The lessons of wild driving. In the fall of 1985, a Los Angeles Times writer arrived in Arkansas.  Despite the anticipation surrounding his kicking skills demonstrated in college, he performed at a dismal level as a professional. Little lived in Little Rock, with his brother, Gene. When Little died, Hocker was 8. During Little's career with Arkansas, the Razorbacks went 10–2 in 1975, 5–5–1 in 1976, and 11–1 in 1977. Steve grew up a farm boy in Lexington and graduated from Lexington High School in 1963. I’m not a real good hospital visitor anyway. “Gene was really his, well, he was his soul mate is what he was, he took care of him.”, Steve died in 1999. In 1994 he scored an upset victory over Lineal and WBA super-middleweight champion Michael Nunn by split decision in London. A year before Little died, he partied into the night with the famed 1977 Arkansas team, and then he and Gene invited the gang back to their home. Editors note: This Benjamin Hochman column originally ran on Dec. 6, 2015. He was born Feb. 28, 1947, to the late Jack and Kathrine Holt Lovelis of Nashville. Little turned professional in 1983 and while he won his first four bouts, he soon started compiling losses. Although he later fought James Toney and Arthur Williams, he never fought for another major title. Email notifications are only sent once a day, and only if there are new matching items. , Hours after his release by the Cardinals, Little was involved in a high-speed single car accident, which broke his neck and left him a quadriplegic. San Diego and Oakland would appear to face much bigger hurdles than St. Louis to keep their teams in the NFL relocation battle. But by the fall of 1980, Little lost some luster. 11 Greatest Razorback of All Time: Steve Little", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Steve_Little_(American_football)&oldid=932017490, NFL player missing current team parameter, Infobox NFL biography articles with old NFL.com URL, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Career statistics and player information from, This page was last edited on 22 December 2019, at 21:59. I didn’t stay very long.”. Also coach Bo Rein had recently accepted an assistant coaching position with Arkansas, and was bringing with him high school standout quarterback Ron Calcagni. He once kicked a 67-yard field goal, in 1977. Act today!
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