clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

ASU's 50 Best Professional Athletes No. 42: NFL linebacker Bob Breunig

We continue our summer series counting down the 50 greatest professional athletes by returning to the gridiron.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Collegiate All-American? Check. Pro Bowl selections? Check. Super Bowl ring? Check. College Football Hall of Fame? Check.

Reaching those accolades alone should define a successful football career, as former Arizona State Sun Devils middle linebacker Bob Breunig amassed them over a four years in Tempe and nine seasons with the Dallas Cowboys.

Coming off a decorated collegiate career where he helped ASU to two WAC championships in 1972 and 1973 while becoming the conference's two-time Defensive Player of the Year and a First-Team All-American, Breunig was a third round (70th overall) pick for the Dallas Cowboys in the 1975 NFL Draft.

Playing under Tom Landry's "flex defense," Breunig was an iron man for the Cowboys, as he started 117 consecutive games over nine seasons and was consistently the team's leading tackler.

Breunig appeared in six NFC Championship Games and three Super Bowls, helping the Cowboys defeat the Denver Broncos at Super Bowl XII in 1978. He was also named as a Pro Bowler in 1979, 1980, and 1982.

Breunig finally retired in 1984 due to back issues. He was inducted in ASU's Ring of Honor in 2012 and to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2015. He ranks third in ASU's all-time solo tackles list with 92 in an individual season and 206 in a career.