Former Iowa All-American quarterback Randy Duncan died Tuesday evening in Des Moines, following a lengthy battle with cancer. He was 79.
Duncan was the first team All-Big Ten quarterback as both a junior and senior, leading Iowa to a 15-2-2 record in his two years as the starting quarterback. He led the Big Ten in passing in 1958 and concluded his Hawkeye career by leading the Hawkeyes to a 38-12 win over California in the 1959 Rose Bowl Game. Iowa earned the Grantland Rice Award in 1958, symbolic of the national football championship at the time.
“The word ‘legend’ is so often overused in sports, but in the case of Randy Duncan it fits perfectly,” said Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz. “He was one of the true Hawkeye legends, who served as an outstanding representative of Iowa football and the University of Iowa.”
Duncan earned the Walter Camp Trophy and was named college Player of the Year by three organizations. He was named Most Valuable Player in the Big Ten Conference and later was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
Duncan was the first player selected in the 1959 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers before electing to begin his professional career in the Canadian Football League. He retired from professional football in 1961, returning to school to earn his law degree from Drake University. He practiced law in Des Moines throughout his career.