Husky memorable moment: McElhenny's miracle return
Former All-American Hugh McElhenny recalls his 100-yard punt return against USC as we count down to the final game before Husky Stadium's renovation.
Seattle Times sports editor
Latest from the Husky Football & Basketball blogs
As fans count down to Saturday's final game before the Husky Stadium renovation, we asked people who played, coached, cheered and worked there for their favorite moments.
Today, former All-American Hugh McElhenny (1949-51), the only Washington player who's a member of the College Foundation Hall of Fame and Pro Football Hall of Fame, reveals his most memorable Husky Stadium moment — a 100-yard punt return on Oct. 6, 1951 in a 20-13 loss to USC. It remains the longest punt return in UW history. Among the USC players left in McElhenny's wake was Frank Gifford, who would go on to fame with the New York Giants and as an announcer for "Monday Night Football."
"We were behind Southern Cal 20-7 my senior year, and I was getting really frustrated at running back. I received a punt at the goal line and decided to run it back. I went 100 yards.
"Our coach, Howie O'Dell, was running down the sideline yelling, 'Let it go! Let it go!' All of a sudden, he stopped yelling.
"It was a stupid play on my part, but it worked out."
McElhenny, 82, is retired and lives in Henderson, Nev., with his wife, Peggy.
Trending on seattletimes.com
Most viewed photo galleries
The Morning Memo
The Morning Memo jump starts your day with weather, traffic and news
The Seattle Times Historical Archives
Browse our newspaper page archives from 1900-1984
Career Center Blog