The San Francisco 49ers family lost a legend on Monday, as Hall of Famer Bob St. Clair passed away. St. Clair, a San Francisco native who attended the University of San Francisco for most of his college career, was 84.
The best story you can read detailing St. Clair's life is this one by Eric Branch. It provides a fantastic look at his life, with some colorful anecdotes. Branch tweeted out a couple quotes from the article and from running back Hugh McElhenny:
Colorful Bob St. Clair called today’s players "candy asses," said this of #49ers potential move to S. Clara in ’06: "What a bunch of crap."— Eric Branch (@Eric_Branch) April 21, 2015
Spoke to Hall-of-Fame RB Hue McElhenny about St. Clair, a hulking and athletic OT: "He would have made a great tight end today." #49ers— Eric Branch (@Eric_Branch) April 21, 2015
McElhenny said from the backfield "all I would be looking at was Bob’s big ass because he was just so tall and high." #49ers— Eric Branch (@Eric_Branch) April 21, 2015
I wrote briefly about St. Clair back in 2008 when we put together our All-Time 49ers team. St. Clair was automatically installed as the No. 1 offensive tackle. While a lot of positions deserved a vote, that was one that was a no-doubter. St. Clair was a Hall of Fame offensive lineman, while also providing great skills as a goal line defender. One stat I came across indicated he blocked ten field goals in 1956. The game was obviously different back then, but that still is quite a number.
I know we have some older 49ers fans around the comments, so I'd love to hear them chime in about the team. As I was born in 1979, I only know about St. Clair second and third-hand. In the meantime, make sure and read Eric Branch's obituary of Bob St. Clair.