Legendary Auburn running back Tommy Lorino passed away Sunday, the school announced in a press release.
Lorino was a member of Auburn’s 1957 National Championship team and the undefeated 1958 squad. He averaged 8.44 yards per carry in the 1956 season, which still stands as one of the SEC’s best marks. He rushed for 1,486 yards on 227 carries in three seasons playing for the Tigers.
He was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 1999 for his play not only at Auburn, but also Bessemer High School outside Birmingham, Ala., and his work as a SEC football official for more than 25 years.
Lorino was at Jordan-Hare Stadium in April, according to AuburnTigers.com, as Auburn gathered together more than 100 former football captains in one spot for A-Day. Lorino was among the recognizable names among them.
He and his teammates were also introduced on the field at Jordan-Hare Stadium for a 1957 National Championship team reunion before Auburn’s game against Mississippi State this past season.
“It really has gotten more special as the years have passed,” Lorino said of his team’s national championship to Phillip Marshall of Auburn Undercover. “When we were doing it, unlike the way they do things today, there wasn’t a race to see if we were second, third, fourth or fifth during the season, whether we were going to get there or not get there. We didn’t really realize that we actually even had a chance until we played Georgia.
“I don’t think anybody on our team said ‘We have to win the national championship.’ That just wasn’t our mindset. The first time Coach Jordan ever mentioned it was right before we went on the field to play Alabama.”
Lorino was a big part of that team and one of the treasured players in Auburn history.