Former Michigan All-American Rob Lytle dies at 56

Rob Lytle, an All-American running back at Michigan who scored a

touchdown in the 1978 Super Bowl as a Denver Broncos rookie, has

died. He was 56.

He had a heart attack Saturday night in Fremont, Ohio, Memorial

Hospital spokeswoman Chasity O’Neill said Sunday. Lytle had been

taken by ambulance to the hospital with symptoms of a heart attack,

she added.

”I knew he had some issues with a stroke a while back, but I

don’t know if that was related,” former Michigan teammate Rick

Leach said. ”I do know he was a special guy, who was a mentor to

me. He was one of the toughest guys I ever played with and one of

the best leaders, who made the ultimate sacrifice for us by playing

fullback at times.”

Lytle was drafted by the Broncos in the second round in 1977. He

scored on a 1-yard run in Denver’s 27-10 loss to Dallas in the

Super Bowl. He played seven seasons with the Broncos and scored 14

times in the regular season.

”Rob was a teammate and an incredibly terrific guy,” Michigan

athletic director Dave Brandon said. ”When I heard the news this

morning, I was sickened by it. It’s a sad day because we’ve lost

someone who was a great example of a Michigan man.”

Lytle finished third in voting for the Heisman Trophy – behind

Pittsburgh’s Tony Dorsett and USC’s Ricky Bell – in 1976 when he

was the Big Ten’s MVP and an All-American.

He helped the Wolverines win three Big Ten titles and ran for

3,317 yards – the highest total in school history at the time – and

scored 26 touchdowns. For the Broncos, he had 1,451 yards rushing

and 562 yards receiving.

Lytle grew up in Ross, Ohio, and graduated from Fremont Ross

High School. He worked for Old Fort Banking Company as a vice

president in Fremont.