WTOP’s Frank Hanrahan reflects on life, legacy of former colleague Sam Huff

NFL Hall of Famer and sports broadcasting legend Sam Huff, 87 was remembered fondly on Saturday by his former colleague, and WTOP sports reporter, Frank Hanrahan.

The legendary linebacker turned sports broadcaster from West Virginia was selected as the NFL’s top linebacker in 1959, transitioning from the New York Giants to the now Washington Football Team, then the Washington Redskins.



WTOP’s Frank Hanrahan remembered working with the iconic broadcaster on the Washington football team’s radio broadcasts.

“[Sam Huff] was a fun loving, down to earth guy who still thought he could play in the NFL, even though he was in his mid 70s,” Hanrahan said. “Sam was super competitive.”

Some of Huff’s fun loving and competitive spirit was on display while Washington broadcasters were in Dallas, Texas for a football game. Huff found out that some of the “younger folks” were going to play basketball and, as Hanrahan recalls, wanted to show them how it should be done.

“I don’t think he had sneakers, or else he would have been out there,” he said.



Hanrahan said that D.C. will remember Huff fondly as “one of the voices of the Washington Football Team’s heyday.” He recalled turning down the TV to hear those must-listen games that the trio — Sam Huff, Sonny Jurgensen and Frank Herzog — called over the radio.

“It was really cool to work with a guy that I had looked up to as a Washington football team fan,” Hanrahan said. “He was very nice to me and he will be missed.”

Huff was a staple of the team’s broadcasting for over 30 years, alongside former quarterback Sonny Jurgensen. All three Washington Super Bowl titles were called by Jurgensen and Huff.

Huff’s death was confirmed by his daughter, Catherin Huff Myers, through her attorney to The Associated Press. In an obituary, the Giants confirmed that Huff was diagnosed with dementia in 2013.

Sam Huff died on Saturday night of natural causes in Winchester, Virginia.

The Associated Press and WTOP’s Frank Hanrahan contributed to this report contributed to this article.

Ivy Lyons

Ivy Lyons is a digital journalist for WTOP.com. Since 2018, they have worked on Capitol Hill, at NBC News in Washington, and with WJLA in Washington.

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