Ex-Auburn, San Diego Chargers running back Lionel James dies after lengthy illness at 59

AUBURN, Ala. — Former Auburn and San Diego Chargers running back Lionel James, who made a reputation for himself for being unstoppable regardless of his small stature, died Friday after a lengthy illness, the college stated. He was 59.

Auburn introduced the demise of James, a 5-foot-6 participant nicknamed “Little Prepare,” however supplied no further particulars.

James performed 5 seasons with the NFL’s Chargers, who’ve since moved to Los Angeles, after being drafted within the fifth spherical in 1984. He set an NFL file with 2,535 all-purpose yards in 1985 after main the Chargers in speeding, receiving and kickoff and punt return yardage.

He led the AFC in receptions that season with 86 whereas setting the NFL file for receiving yards by a running back with 1,027.

James, who was inducted into the Alabama Sports activities Corridor of Fame in 2006, led Auburn in all-purpose yards in 1981 and 1982 and have become one of many first signature gamers of the Pat Dye period. He was a staff captain in 1983 and helped lead the Tigers to their first Southeastern Convention championship in 26 years.

That backfield included 1985 Heisman Trophy winner Bo Jackson and one other future NFL participant, Tommie Agee.

“Lionel James outlined Auburn soccer for a technology,” David Housel, a former Auburn sports activities data director and athletic director, stated in a information launch.

Agee known as James “pound for pound one of many best all-purpose gamers to play the sport of soccer.”

James returned to Auburn after his NFL profession and graduated in 1989. He coached tight ends on Terry Bowden’s workers in 1996-97.


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