This week I am going to remember Trojans who died in 2021.
Today, a look at offensive tackle Steve Riley, who was an All-American offensive tackle in 1973.
Steve Riley died on Sept. 16 from cardiac arrest. He was 68.
Riley was an offensive tackle on the 1972 national championship team that went undefeated and named an All-American in 1973.
Riley was a first-round pick in 1974 and spent 11 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, where he started 128 of the 138 games he played.
In 1976, Riley took over the starting left tackle spot, where he remained a fixture throughout the rest of his career. He started in Super Bowl XI to cap that season and helped Minnesota advanced to the 1977 NFC Championship Game.
He also played in Super Bowls IX and XI.
His games played rank fourth-most in Vikings history among tackles behind Ron Yary (199), Grady Alderman (194) and Tim Irwin (188).
“Steve had a great attitude, and he was proud to be a Viking,” former Vikings coach Bud Grant said. “He was as nice a guy as you could have, and he had a tough job as the left tackle. He was an athletic player and very intelligent.
“He and Ron Yary were our bookends at tackle, a couple of Southern California guys, and they did a great job.”
Over his career, Riley helped the Vikings reach the playoffs seven times.
He came to USC from Castle Park High School in Chula Vista.