|Born:||December 22, 1949|
|Height:||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Weight:||195 lb (88 kg)|
|High school:||Thomson (Thomson, Georgia)|
|College:||Southern Miss (1969–1972)|
|NFL Draft:||1973 / Round: 1 / Pick: 23|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at NFL.com · PFR|
William Ray Guy (born December 22, 1949) is an American former professional football player who played as punter for the Oakland / Los Angeles Raiders of the National Football League (NFL). Guy was a unanimous All-American selection in 1972 as a senior at the University of Southern Mississippi, and was the first pure punter ever to be drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft, when the Oakland Raiders selected him with the 23rd overall pick in 1973. Guy was elected to both the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2014. An eight-time NFL All-Pro, Guy is widely considered to be the greatest punter of all time.
With his induction to the Hall of Fame on August 2, 2014, he became only the second pure kicker (after Jan Stenerud) and the first pure punter so honored.
Guy attended Thomson High School in Thomson, Georgia, where he was a four–sport star. Playing quarterback, safety, linebacker and tailback, aside from Kicking and punting duties, Guy led Thomson to Georgia Class A state football championships in 1967 and 1968. Guy averaged 49.7 yards per punt in 1968. Playing basketball, Guy scored 39 points in a Thomson basketball game the day after the 1968 state championship football game, with no practice. In baseball, Guy pitched a 15–inning scoreless game for Thomson in the state playoff semi–finals in 1969.
Guy was both a punter and a placekicker at Southern Mississippi, once kicking a then–record 61–yard field goal in a snowstorm during a game in Utah. In 1972, he kicked a 93–yard punt in a game against the University of Mississippi. After his senior season, Guy was named Most Valuable Player of the 1973 Chicago College All-Star Game, in which an all–star team of college seniors played the current Super Bowl champion. He was also a starting safety at Southern Miss; during his senior season, he intercepted a school–record eight passes, and was named an All–American defensive back.
Guy was the first punter ever to be selected in the first round in the NFL Draft, when the Oakland Raiders selected him as the 23rd pick in the 1973 NFL Draft.
In his career as a punter, Guy played his entire career with the Raiders and was selected to seven Pro Bowl teams including six in a row from 1973 to 1978. He was named as the punter on the NFL's 75th and 100th Anniversary teams. His trademark was kicking punts that stayed in the air for long periods of time. More often than not, by the time a punt returner was able to field one of Guy's punts, the Raiders' coverage unit had the field covered so well that returns were difficult, if not impossible. Although Guy rarely kicked for distance, his punts often left opposing offenses pinned deep in their own end of the field. The statistic for hang time was instituted in the NFL during his career, reportedly because of him. Pro Football Hall of Fame historian Joe Horrigan once said of Guy, "He's the first punter you could look at and say: 'He won games.'"
In Super Bowl XVIII, Guy punted seven times for 299 yards (42.7 average), with 244 net yards (34.8 average). Five of his punts pinned the Washington Redskins inside their own 20. Due in part to his effective punting, the Los Angeles Raiders easily won the game, 38–9.
During the early part of his career, he was the Raiders' emergency quarterback, replacing kicker–quarterback George Blanda in this position. He also occasionally did kickoffs for the Raiders because the aging Blanda no longer had great range.
After a 1977 game against the Houston Oilers, Oilers coach Bum Phillips accused Guy of using footballs illegally inflated with helium because he had "never seen anyone hang kickoffs like Guy did", and that the ball was "hanging up there too long"; additionally, the Raiders had used a new ball for every punt, adding to his suspicions. Phillips said after the game that he would send the ball to Rice University for testing. Guy punted 3 times for 107 yards in the game.
In his 13–year career, Guy:
Ray Guy was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a member of the class of 2014 on August 2, 2014. For many years before his induction in 2014, he was considered one of the most worthy players who had not yet been selected for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. In 1994, he was the first pure punter to be nominated for enshrinement. In his enshrinement speech, he proudly proclaimed, "Now the Hall of Fame has a complete team."
Guy has been inducted into both the Mississippi and Georgia Sports Halls of Fame, the National High School Sports Hall of Fame, and the College Football Hall of Fame. On April 21, 2008, Guy was inducted into the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame.
|Won the Super Bowl|
|Led the league|
In 2000, the Greater Augusta Sports Council instituted the Ray Guy Award, to be awarded to the nation's best collegiate punter. Since many collegiate punters nominated for the Ray Guy Award are either former students or work at his kicking camps, Guy himself does not participate in the voting process to avoid accusations of favoritism.
In 2005, Guy helped organize and participated in two-day kicking camps, held throughout the United States, for high-school punters, placekickers, and longsnappers. In 2007, the camp was once again held on the campus of Colorado College. He has help from son Ryan Guy.
Guy was married to Beverly Guy. The couple has two children, Ryan and Amber.
On August 14, 2011, Guy filed for bankruptcy and was forced to put up his Super Bowl rings for auction. The auction of the rings brought in $96,216, slightly higher than the upper estimate of 90K.