Ray Evans (American football)

Ray Evans
No. 48
Position: Halfback
Personal information
Date of birth: (1922-09-22)September 22, 1922
Place of birth: Kansas City, Kansas
Date of death: April 24, 1999(1999-04-24) (aged 76)
Place of death: Prairie Village, Kansas
Career information
College: Kansas
(1941-1942, 1946-1947)
NFL Draft: 1944 / Round: 1 / Pick: 9
(By the Chicago Bears)
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Rushing attempts-yards: 99-343
Receptions-yards: 7-93
Touchdowns: 2
Player stats at NFL.com

Raymond Richard Evans (September 22, 1922  April 24, 1999) was an American football halfback. He was an All-American in football and a two time All-American in basketball at the University of Kansas and is considered possibly the greatest overall athlete to ever attend KU. In addition to his multi-sport prowess in college, Evans would go on to play professional football and basketball, and was even offered a contract to play baseball for the New York Yankees.

College career


He played both halfback on offense and defensive back on defense at KU. During his 1947 All-American season, Evans led the Jayhawks to a Big Six Conference championship and an appearance in the Orange Bowl. He also holds the distinction as the only NCAA football player ever to lead the nation in passing on offense and interceptions on defense in the same season. In fact, Evans is still the Jayhawks single-season (10) and career (17) leader in interceptions.


Evans was also a standout guard on the basketball team where he played for the legendary Phog Allen. He was an All-American member of the 1943 conference championship team (which also featured Charles B. Black and Otto Schnellbacher) that is regarded as one of the greatest in the basketball program's proud history.

Professional career

Evans was drafted by the New York Knicks in the 1947 BAA Draft[1] but went on to play in the National Football League for the Pittsburgh Steelers (1948).


Ray Evans is the only athlete at KU to have both his basketball jersey (15) and football jersey (42) retired. Ray's college athletic career was interrupted by three years of service with the United States Army Air Forces during World War II.[2][3] He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1964. Evans died in his home on April 24, 1999 from natural causes.[4]


  1. 1947 BAA Draft
  2. "World War II Kansas Selective Service Index" (English). Retrieved 2010-05-23.
  3. "Ray Evans Full Bio" (English). Retrieved 2010-05-23.
  4. "Ray Evans Obituary" (English). Lawrence Journal-World. Retrieved 2010-05-23.
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