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Tim Rossovich, actor and former NFL player, dies at 72

December 8, 2018

FILE - In this Dec. 13, 1967, file photo, Southern California football players Ron Yary, left, Tim Rossovich, second from left, O.J. Simpson, second from right, and Adrian Young, right, visit the set of the movie "Star" at 20th Century-Fox Studios in Hollywood in Los Angeles, Calif., and get a football autographed by movie star Julie Andrews, third from left, as director Robert Wise, third from right, who directs the movie, looks on. Rossovich, a consensus All-American defensive end at Southern California who played in the NFL before going on to an acting career, has died. He was 72. He died Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018, in Sacramento after a long illness, the school said Friday. (AP Photo/David Smith, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Tim Rossovich, a consensus All-America defensive end at Southern California who played in the NFL before going on to an acting career, has died. He was 72.

Rossovich died Thursday in Sacramento after a long illness, the school said Friday.

Rossovich played at USC from 1965-67 and appeared in two Rose Bowls. He was co-captain of the 1967 team that won the national championship. Rossovich was inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2015.

He was selected with the 14th pick of the 1968 NFL draft by the Philadelphia Eagles and played linebacker for them from 1968-71, getting named to the 1969 Pro Bowl. He also played for the San Diego Chargers in 1972-73 and Houston Oilers in 1976.

During his football days, Rossovich had a reputation as an intense and eccentric personality. He was famous for pranks that included chewing glass, setting himself on fire, jumping off rooftops and driving motorbikes off piers.

Rossovich also played for the Philadelphia Bell of the World Football League in 1974 and ’75.

After his football career ended, Rossovich spent two decades as an actor and stuntman. At USC, he roomed with actor Tom Selleck, on whose hit “Magnum, P.I.” Rossovich later appeared.

Rossovich’s other TV credits included “MacGyver,” ″Hunter,” ″Baywatch,” ″The Love Boat,” ″Knight Rider,” ″Charlie’s Angels,” ″Remington Steele,” ″Soap,” and “The A-Team.” Among his film credits are “Night Shift,” ″Sting II” and “The Main Event.”

Born Timothy John Rossovich on March 14, 1946, in Palo Alto, he graduated from St. Francis High in Mountain View.

He is survived by wife Lauren, daughter Jaime, father Frank, actor-brother Rick and two sisters.

No services were planned.

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