Jack Tatum, a defensive back known as “The Assassin” for his violent tackles, died at age 61, Ohio State University said in a statement.
Tatum was an All-American player at Ohio State who went on to star in the National Football League with the Oakland Raiders.
In a 1978 game against the New England Patriots, Tatum paralyzed wide receiver Darryl Stingley with a tackle. Stingley spent the rest of his life in a wheelchair and died in 2007.
Tatum was diagnosed with diabetes after retiring from the NFL in 1980 and had his right leg and all the toes on his left foot amputated, 10TV of Columbus, Ohio, said. The station said Tatum died of a heart attack.