Jim Kiick: Miami Dolphins great dies aged 73
Last Updated: 21/06/20 2:02pm
Jim Kiick, the versatile running back who helped the Miami Dolphins achieve the NFL's only perfect season in 1972, has died aged 73.
The former University of Wyoming star was part of a formidable backfield that included his best friend, Pro Football Hall of Fame fullback Larry Csonka.
They earned the nicknames Butch and Sundance, inspired by the popular 1969 movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
Kiick ("Butch") made the American Football League All-Star team in his first two seasons and played on Miami's back-to-back Super Bowl championship teams in 1972-73.
Kiick had two touchdowns for the 72 Dolphins in the AFC championship game, and also scored in the Super Bowl victory that capped their 17-0 season under Pro Football Hall of Fame coach Don Shula.
In recent years, Kiick lived in an assisted living home. His daughter, Allie, had shared an update on his battle with Alzheimer's disease on Thursday and said that because of the COVID-19 pandemic, no visitors were allowed.
"I miss my dad," she wrote in the post on Twitter. "It's pretty hard when you're sitting on the outside of the glass and can't do anything to cheer him up. He's lost the spark in his eyes as anyone would in this situation."
A fifth-round pick in 1968, Kiick spent the first seven of his nine NFL seasons in Miami. He ran for 3,644 yards and piled up another 2,210 receiving with the Dolphins, scoring 31 total touchdowns while joining with fullback
He made the AFL Pro Bowl in each of his first two seasons, then helped the Dolphins to back-to-back Super Bowl wins after they joined the NFL following the AFL/NFL merger.
And it’s amazing to see all my dads fans.... all the stories. Thank you all. He is the best dad I could have ever asked for and will forever be a legend and my hero #21— Allie Kiick (@AllieKiick) June 20, 2020
In 1972, the Dolphins finished the season 17-0 to win their first championship and become the first and still only NFL team to finish a season unbeaten in the Super Bowl era. Kiick scored at least once in all three post-season games.
Following retirement from football, Kiick worked as a private investigator for the Broward County public defenders office.
"He is the best dad I could have ever asked for, and will forever be a legend and my hero," daughter Allie Kiick wrote on Twitter after his death.
Allie is a professional tennis player who has been ranked in the top 150 on the women's tour. Jim Kiick's father, George, played fullback for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1940 and 1945.