Herb Rich


Herb Rich (Football, 1946-49) 

Those who witnessed this Miami, Florida native gracefully dominate the gridiron still regard Herb Rich as perhaps the finest all-around athlete in their memory. Indeed, the 180-pound speedster-turned-attorney left tangible signs of his football prowess that have survived after more than a half-century. Rich was a distinguished gentleman, lawyer and community activist but he also happened to be a dandy right halfback in college and set a National Football League record that is still on the books.

  • President of his Vanderbilt sophomore class
  • Led Vanderbilt in rushing in 1948 and 1949, ranking among SEC and national leaders
  • Commodores never had a losing season in Rich’s era, winning 24 games
  • Played in and scored a touchdown in the first Senior Bowl game
  • Also played baseball at Vanderbilt
  • Inducted into Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame, 1992
  • Drafted by Baltimore Colts and averaged 23 yards per punt return in 1950 to set a NFL record that still exists
  • Starting safety for Los Angeles Rams for three years, who won the 1951 World Championship, and finally for the New York Giants, who won the 1956 title. Coached in New York by Tom Landry and Vince Lombardi.
  • Retired from football in 1956 to become Nashville attorney
  • Nashville Boys and Girls Club board member for over 50 years
  • President of Commodore Booster Club and Nashville Quarterback Club
  • President of Nashville Jewish Community Center, 1971-1972