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Former Chargers, Browns linebacker Bob Babich dies at 74

Miami Dolphins v Cleveland Browns

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 15: Linebacker Bob Babich #60 and safety Walt Sumner #29 of the Cleveland Browns celebrate on the sideline during a game against the Miami Dolphins on October 15, 1973 at Cleveland Municipal Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio. Miami won 17-9. (Photo by Ron Kuntz Collection/Diamond Images via Getty Images)

Diamond Images via Getty Images

Former NFL linebacker Bob Babich died April 3 at his home in Clairemont, California, the National Football Foundation announced Wednesday. Babich was 74.

Babich is the only player from Miami University in Ohio to earn induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.

“An exceptional hard-hitting linebacker, Bob Babich made his mark in Oxford, (Ohio), as one of the best in the country,” NFF chairman Archie Manning said in a statement. “He was great guy to be around with a great sense of humor and full of great stories. We are deeply saddened to learn of his passing and our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.”

The Chargers made Babich a first-round choice in 1969, and he played every game for the team for three seasons. The Chargers traded him to the Browns in 1973 for a first-round draft choice in 1974 and a second-rounder in 1975.

Babich played the next six seasons for the Browns, missing only three games.

He retired after the 1978 season after 125 games, including 86 starts.

After his playing days, he operated his own firm for more than two decades in the insurance, financial services and real estate lending industry. (He is not to be confused with former NFL assistant coach Bob Babich, who retired from the Bills earlier this year.)