Walk-on Karlis, Salem alum, kicked for Cincinnati

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CINCINNATI, Ohio (WKBN) – Rich Karlis ran track as a sophomore and junior in high school before going out for Salem’s football team as a senior to serve as the Quakers’ punter and kicker. From there, he walked onto the Cincinnati Bearcats’ team in college as a punter before settling in as the team’s placekicker.

As a senior for the Bearcats in 1980, who went 2-9, Karlis made 12 extra points and 10 field goals (42 points). He was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Oilers in 1981. The barefoot kicker found a home in Denver where he spent the next 7 seasons kicking the ball for the Broncos.

The most memorable kick of his career came at Cleveland Municipal Stadium in the 1986 AFC Championship game when he kicked the game-winning field goal against the Browns to send the Broncos to Super Bowl XXI.

1980 Cincinnati’s Results
Bearcats 23 Miami, OH 13
Louisville 20 Bearcats 0
Bearcats 14 Memphis 10
Richmond 24 Bearcats 10
Temple 23 Bearcats 7
South Carolina 49 Bearcats 7
Villanova 23 Bearcats 6
Wichita State 13 Bearcats 8
Rutgers 24 Bearcats 7
Tulsa 31 Bearcats 13
West Virginia 41 Bearcats 27

Countdown to College Football
August 14 – Top sports star in 1942 wins Heisman
August 15 – Before politics, Traficant started at QB for Pitt
August 16 – Roger Staubach meets Youngstown State
August 17 – “Best linebacker I ever coached” says Woody Hayes
August 18 – Sherman “Tank” runs wild for Miami of Ohio
August 19 – Sugar Bowl MVP aids Pitt in title game
August 20 – Lombardi award winner called New Castle home
August 21 – Walk-on Karlis kicks for Cincinnati
August 22 – K-State registers 1st bowl victory; Coleman named MVP
August 23 – Burke’s 400-yard game lifts Michigan State past Brady & Michigan
August 24 – Clarett shines for Buckeyes in memorable season
August 25 – Syracuse’s workhorse from Struthers
August 26 – Missouri’s dual-threat quarterback boosts Tigers to top Nebraska
August 27 – Penn State QB guides Nittany Lion faithful to Rose Bowl

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