/Babe Parilli, Standout Quarterback, Dies at 87

Babe Parilli, Standout Quarterback, Dies at 87

In 1982, he was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame. His biography there reads, in part:

“Parilli brought national recognition as he introduced Bear Bryant’s T formation that baffled opponents and spectators alike. On the field or in the stands, you simply lost sight of the football once Parilli had it in his magical Houdini hands. Defenders tackled backs not carrying the ball as Parilli miraculously seemed to repossess it and toss it into hands that suddenly appeared from obscurity.”

Parilli put great trust in Bryant, one of the sport’s legendary coaches, most notably at the University of Alabama. In 1980, Time magazine recalled a hospital visit from Bryant the day after Parilli underwent shoulder surgery in 1950. Bryant threw a stack of new plays on the bed, the article said. It continued:

“The plays were designed to let Parilli stand back in the shotgun offense and throw the ball after getting a long snap from center. ‘Learn them,’ the coach told his quarterback. Said Parilli: ‘I thought he was crazy. I could barely move. But I studied the plays. We were playing Louisiana State the next week, and on the…

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