God Bless Mr and Mrs Selmon

Eufala, Oklahoma is a small community of just under 3,000 people located somewhat in the eastern part of the state.

For such a small town, they have 5 former residents that played in the NFL and another guy that played in the Canadian Football League.

But, those numbers are inflated some by three brothers of the famous Selmon brothers that played for

the Oklahoma Sooners back in the 1970s.

The oldest Selmon brother, Lucious,  was a little on the smaller size. Larry Lacewell was the Sooners’ recruiting ace back in those days and he admitted that at first glance he really wasn’t that interested in Lucious until he looked past him at his younger brothers. But once he laid eyes on Dewey and Lee Roy Selmon, he just knew he had to take Lucious.

It was a move he would not regret.

There is a story about a group of Christian men that travel around the country doing feats of strength while sharing their faith with local high school football players. One of the men lifted some weight on the bench press and young Lucious went to the stage and he was stronger than the man putting on the show. Lucious had never lifted weights in his life up until that point. He was just what they used to call ‘farm strong’ or ‘country strong’.

Lucious Selmon came to Oklahoma in an age when freshmen were not eligible to play on the varsity. His first year in college was 1970. In 1971, he was a sophomore who played on the Oklahoma team that lost a close, hard fought battle against Nebraska in the Game of the Century.

In 1972, freshmen were ruled eligible to play on the varsity for the first time. That new rule was just in time for the arrival of 2 new Selmon brothers.

Dewey was 11 months older than Lee Roy, but they were in the same class. They were also too good to keep off the playing field.

Lucious Selmon was a consensus All American in 1973. Dewey and Lee Roy were both consensus All Americans in 1974 and 1975. Lee Roy was the biggest and the best of the three brothers winning both the Lombardi and Outland Awards in 1975 as the nation’s best lineman.

Lucious finished 2nd in the Outland Trophy voting and he was 7th in the Heisman voting in 1973. After his senior season, he was drafted by the New England Patriots, but he wound up playing for the Memphis Southmen of the World Football League for two seasons.

The WFL collapsed after a couple of seasons and Oklahoma football coach Barry Switzer

asked Lucious Selmon to come back to Oklahoma as a coach. He coached at Oklahoma for 19 seasons before getting into the NFL where he coached at Denver and Jacksonville. He returned to the college game for one season at Michigan State, before being hired by the Oakland Raiders.

He was only 5-11, 235 while a player at Oklahoma, but he sure proved Larry Lacewell wrong.


Dewey Selmon was slightly bigger than his older brother at 6-1, 250 and Lee Roy was 6-2, 255. They terrorized Offensive Linemen and Quarterbacks while at Oklahoma.

Lee Roy had 18 Quarterback sacks in 1974 from his Tackle position while making 125 total tackles. Those kind of numbers just aren’t done today.

For his senior year, Lee Roy’s sack totals were down with only 10, but he had 132 total tackles which is amazing for a down lineman in any era.

Lee Roy Selmon was picked with the very first choice of the entire NFL Draft in 1976 by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. With their second round selection, the Bucs took Dewey Selmon.

Lee Roy Selmon had an outstanding career in the NFL going to 6 straight Pro Bowls during his 9 year career.

He won pretty much every honor possible as a Defensive End in the NFL including induction into the NFL Hall of Fame later in 1995.

A serious back injury forced him to retire from football after 9 seasons. After football, he went t

o work as a bank executive and later as an assistant Athletic Director at South Florida.

Sadly, he suffered a stroke in 2011 and passed away from complications a short time later.

Dewey played with Lee Roy in Tampa for 6 seasons before he went to San Diego and finished his career with the Chargers.

Dewey played Linebacker in the NFL. He returned to Oklahoma and earned his PH.D. in Philosophy.

College football has had a few brother tandems over the seasons with the Browner brothers, the Mannings, the Matthews and now the McCaffreys. There were plenty of other brothers.

But, maybe none of them were better than Oklahoma’s Selmon brothers.

It’s been more than 40 years since the Selmon brothers played at Oklahoma, but some people may still walk around saying ‘God bless Mr and Mrs Selmon’.

They were legends.

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