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The tale this month tells the story about a player that was a member of the famous 1964 football team, as well as playing a key role in the famous 22 straight wins of 1964 through 1965. Before he was a real estate mogul, before he was a property developer, before he was even a former NFL player, he was a RAZORBACK.
Born on November 24, 1944, to parents Elmer E. and Ida Lindsey as the youngest of six children, Jim spent his early life growing up in the small community of Caldwell in eastern Arkansas. For those who don't know, Caldwell lies just north of Forest City and Interstate 40 in St. Francis county and has slightly more than 500 people. It was from Caldwell that Jim Lindsey followed his dream by making his way to Fayetteville as a fresh out-of-high school graduate on a football scholarship and then when the time came, left the Ozarks as a national champion Razorback running back. As the tale continues ...
It was just ten days following the 1965 Cotton Bowl Classic that author Dan Jenkins recalled in his article, “Arkansas Takes Over at the Top” which appeared in Sports Illustrated, where he wrote “until just nine minutes remained in the fourth quarter, at which point Nebraska held a 7—3 lead. But that was time enough for Quarterback Freddy Marshall to complete five big passes — the two most important ones going to Halfback Jim Lindsey — and to drive Arkansas a precious 80 yards to a touchdown and victory.” With 9:21 left to play, the famous 80 yard last drive began with a throwback pass to tailback Bobby Burnett, followed by an 11 yard scramble up the middle by Marshall. Marshall knew, in fact the whole offense knew, that the National Championship was on the line and if it was to be the Hogs' then now was the time. Then came the famous over the shoulder pass reception on a pass thrown from Marshall to Lindsey to get the drive started. Although Lindsey had been knocked down at the line of scrimmage, Marshall yelled to him, but Lindsey couldn’t hear him for all of the noise and never turned around. Somehow as if by destiny the ball found its home and the play ended with a first down. In a like manner, the drive continued and finally came to its end with a 27 yard reception of a pass again from Marshall to Lindsey carrying down to the five. A few moments later, Burnett took the ball the final three yards on a pitchout from Marshall around right end for the final score. Following that with just 4:41 left on the game clock, and after the two stellar receptions by Lindsey, Arkansas was able to pull out the win and beat Nebraska 10 — 7 in the 1965 Cotton Bowl Classic to cap off the first undefeated season since 1909 and seal the Hogs’ first football National Championship.
Lindsey could not have known when he started his Razorback career that it would ever end up the way it did with such glory and historical significance. As part of that team and for his accomplishments, he has been inducted in 1987 into the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame, and in 1997 into the University of Arkansas Sports Hall of Honor. In 1965 he was selected as an Academic All-American wingback and played in the 1966 All-American Game in Lubbock, TX. Also in 1966, he played in the Senior Bowl in Mobile, AL and in the College All Star Game in Chicago, IL.
His career as a Hog spanned from 1963 through 1965 where he gained 1,191 yards rushing on 279 attempts for 8 touchdowns. Along with his rushing stats, he added 638 yards receiving on 43 receptions and 4 touchdowns. During his career, he played a total of 322 plays and scored 12 touchdowns while gaining 1,829 yards. In addition to all of this, he added 145 yards on 7 kick returns having an average of 20.7 yard per return. As the starting right halfback, he joins one of the most overall talented football teams to ever wear the cardinal and white. It was a great season with great players, and Jim Lindsey was one of the keys which made this tale easy to tell.