Memorial Service Set for Former Auburn Star

Mobile, Ala.--One of the greatest players in Auburn football history, Dr. Ed Dyas, died on Sunday at the age of 71 in his hometown of Mobile.

A funeral service will be held on Thursday at St. Pius Catholic Church in Mobile. Mass will be held at 9:30 a.m. CST with the memorial at 12:30 p.m.

Dyas, who played varsity football for the Tigers from 1958-60 in an era when freshmen played on freshman only teams, was an All-American fullback and kicker who was also a standout linebacker.

Inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2009, he was an Academic All-American at Auburn who chose medical school over professional football.

Dyas was fourth in the voting for the Heisman Trophy in 1960. That season he set an NCAA record for field goals in a season with 13.

As a senior at Auburn, Dyas won the Cliff Hare Award, which is presented to the outstanding Auburn senior student-athlete. He also won the Bill Streit Award, which goes to the football player with the highest grade point average over four years.

"We are deeply saddened by the death of Dr. Ed Dyas," Auburn Athletic Director Jay Jacobs said. "He was a fighter who embodied the values of the Auburn Creed that we all hold dear.

"Dr. Dyas was one of Auburn's all-time greats, but he was much more than a great athlete. He was a scholar, a gentleman, a successful surgeon, a civic leader and a trusted friend. We extend our deepest condolences to the Dyas family and will keep them in our thoughts in prayers."

Ed Dyas is chased by No. 60 Pat Dye, an All-American at Georgia who later became head football coach at Auburn.

A three-time Academic All-American, he attended medical school at Tulane and Duke.

As a senior he won four games with field goals. He scored all of Auburn's points in a 9-6 Auburn victory in the first Auburn-Georgia game played in Jordan-Hare Stadium. He rushed for 1,298 yards, which was sixth on Auburn's all-time list when he graduated.

In a 2010 interview with Inside the Auburn Tigers, Dyas explained why he turned down the opportunity to play in the NFL.

"I had enough football by then and wanted to go on and finish medical school, which I did," he said. "I had some times when I looked back over my shoulder and wondered whether I had done the right thing, but if I had played pro football I would have never met my wife (Diane) and wouldn't have these four wonderful children and the wonderful grandchildren so whatever led me down this path it was the right one."

Despite no NFL career, Dyas joined a select group of Auburn men in the College Football Hall of Fame. That list includes players Jimmy Hitchcock (1954), Walter Gilbert (1956), Pat Sullivan (1991), Tucker Frederickson (1994), Bo Jackson (1998), Terry Beasley (2002) and Tracy Rocker (2004). Auburn coaches also in the Hall of Fame include Mike Donahue (1951), John W. Heisman (1954), Ralph "Shug" Jordan (1982) and Dye (2005).

Recognized for his many contributions to Auburn as an alumnus over the years, Dyas was highly respected by his generation of Auburn graduates and he obviously had strong feelings for his alma mater. "I went to Auburn when I was 17 years old and I grew up and became a man up there," he said. "I love Auburn and it has done a whole lot for me."

A member of the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame, he received the Walter Gilbert Award, which is awarded annually to a former Auburn student-athlete who distinguishes themselves through achievements after graduation at Auburn. He stayed active in Auburn alumni affairs while working in Mobile as an orthopedic surgeon.

Dyas is survived by his wife Diane and four children, Laurie Chunn, Katherine Watts, Edmund Dyas V, and David Dyas.

Premium Subscription Signup

Subscribe to Magazine


Inside The AU Tigers Top Stories