“Touchdown Timmy” is finally getting his chance at athletic immortality.
Tim Brown, the former Raiders standout and the first wide receiver to ever win the Heisman, is set join some of the top names in football this weekend when he is inducted in the league’s Hall of Fame as part of the 2015 class. Brown, who now lives in Texas with his family, was almost synonymous with the grey and black during the early 90’s and has since gone on to find success in a handful of on and off the field undertakings.
Before they take the sheet off of Brown’s Hall of Fame bust, learn a bit more on what got him to Canton. Here’s what you need to know:
1. Brown Played College Football at Notre Dame & Won the Heisman Trophy
After a standout high school career at Woodrow Wilson High School in Dallas, Brown was recruited by a handful of major colleges before deciding on Notre Dame, where he played from 1984 to 1987.
While he donned the green and gold, Brown earned the nickname “Touchdown Timmy,” setting the freshman record with twenty-eight receptions. Brown finished his career with the Irish with 137 receptions for 2,493 receiving yards, as well as a school record 5,024 all-purpose yards and 22 touchdowns.
In 1987, Brown made college football history when he became the first-ever wide receiver to win the Heisman Trophy. Despite near-constant double and triple coverage as a senior, defenders could not fin a way to bring Brown down and he was considered one of the most dominant playmakers in the entire country.
2. He Spent 16 Years in the Raiders Organization & Was Known as ‘Mr. Raider’
Brown was a first-round pick by the Los Angeles Raiders in the 1988 draft, selected sixth overall. It didn’t take long for him to start impacting the game and in his first season Brown led the league in kickoff returns, return yards, and yards per return average.
He developed a reputation for quick-footed moves and the kind of speed that could leave defensive backs in the dust. Still, he never considered the Hall of Fame, telling ESPN:
It really wasn’t something I thought about. I was so focused on trying to finish my career and get to the Super Bowl and win a Super Bowl. That was all that mattered to me. I think at that particular point, that was the first time that it was mentioned to me. You couldn’t help but to think about it a little afterwards, but thankfully I still had the focus to stay on the grind and to try to get something done with the team. I always had that as a bigger priority than anything else that we were trying to accomplish.
He was voted to the Pro Bowl nine times and in 2002 he passed Gene Upshaw to become the Raiders’ all-time leader in games played. Brown also set franchise records in receptions, receiving yards and punt return yards.
Brown wrapped up his NFL career in Tampa Bay after the 2004 season but was able to retire as a Raider, signing a one-day contract with the team.
3. Brown Wanted to Start a NASCAR Racing Team in 2005
Shortly after he announced his retirement from the NFL, Brown followed up with an equally intriguing endeavor, looking to become the first black majority owner of a NASCAR team. The Dallas native had no background in racing but told ESPN that he planned to partner with Roush Racing, out of Charlotte, North Carolina.
Brown attempted to get the project going, working with NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program to recruit African American sponsors to fund the venture and to attract a handful of drivers. However, the plan never truly played out the way the Pro Bowl’er had pictured it and the team never got off the ground.
4. He Serves as the General Manager the Texas Revolution of the Indoor Football League
Although he’s done plenty of charity and TV work, Brown’s greatest post-NFL project has been back on the gridiron. Brown has been serving as the general manager of the Texas Revolution, a team in the Indoor Football League, for the past several years.
The Revolution were in the media spotlight earlier this year when former player, Dr. Jen Welter, was named the first female coach in NFL history, serving as an intern during Arizona Cardinals training camp. Brown described the former running back during a stint on Mike & Mike:
We’re like, ‘C’mon Jen.’ She’s only 5-1, 5-2 … 115 pounds soaking wet. She wanted a shot, so we figured we would give her a shot and put her in some preseason stuff, and she did OK so we put the pads on her. We kept thinking, ‘After this hit, she’ll be done. But she kept getting up.
After playing for the Revolution in 2014, Brown hired Welter as an assistant coach for the 2015 season.
5. Brown & His Wife, Sherice Weaver, Have Been Married Since 1997
While her husband’s schedule may seem hectic, Weaver is just as busy and just as accomplished as her soon-to-be Hall of Fame other half. She’s a health and fitness fan, always looking to find a way to improve her body and mind and is even getting into the literary side of things, telling Pro Players Inside:
I’m always working on ways to improve health and fitness. Through She’ Brown’s Fitness, I’m doing personal training and instructing on nutrition. The Lanette Group serves as a catering and events company. Additionally, I’m in the preliminary stages of writing a book about my life.
Brown and Weaver met at the wedding reception of a mutual friend and the two quickly established a connection. They were married in 1996 and the pair welcomed twins in 2003. It was a vaguely hectic birth for the couple because Brown was unable to attend. Instead, he was playing in the Super Bowl with the Oakland Raiders. Team owner Al Davis had reportedly kept a Lear jet on hold at San Diego’s Lindbergh Field before the game so Brown could get back home if Weaver went into labor.
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