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Jim Thomas (gridiron football)

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Jim "Long Gone"[1] Thomas (December 18, 1938 – October 4, 2015) was an American gridiron football player and coach. He played professionally as a running back for nine seasons in the Canadian Football League CFL) with the Edmonton Eskimos. Thomas ran for 6,161 yards in his CFL career and was a two-time CFL All-Star.[2] He signed to the Los Angeles Rams of the National Football League (NFL) in 1970 for a five-game trial, but returned to Edmonton.[3]

Jim Thomas
No. 12, 14, 20, 23
Born:(1938-12-18)December 18, 1938
Columbus, Mississippi
Died:October 4, 2015(2015-10-04) (aged 76)
Columbus, Mississippi
Career information
CFL statusInternational
Height6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Weight195 lb (88 kg)
CollegeMississippi Industrial College
Career history
As player
19631971Edmonton Eskimos
Career highlights and awards
CFL All-Star1966, 1967
CFL West All-Star1965, 1966, 1967
RecordsEskimos Record
  • Longest Run (104) - October 9, 1965

Thomas holds the record for the three longest rushing touchdowns in Eskimos history—a 104-yard run on October 9, 1965 against the BC Lions, a 100-yard run on August 2, 1966 against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, and a 97-yard run on September 4, 1964 against the Ottawa Rough Riders.[4]

Thomas attended R. E. Hunt High School in Columbus, Mississippi, a segregated school for blacks only. He attended college at Mississippi Industrial College in Holly Springs, Mississippi.

After his playing career was over, Thomas earned a master's degree from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. He coached in college at Southwestern Oklahoma State and the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) as well as Noxubee County High School, Houston High School, and in Memphis before winding up at Mississippi Valley State University.[5]

Thomas died in 2015.[6][7]

Head coaching recordEdit

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils (Southwestern Athletic Conference) (1978–1979)
1978 Mississippi Valley State 6–3–1 3–2–1 3rd
1979 Mississippi Valley State 4–5 2–4 5th
Mississippi Valley State: 10–8–1 5–6–1
Total: 10–8–1


  1. ^ Long Gone Really Gone
  2. ^ CFL loses two Stars to Los Angeles Rams
  3. ^ Surprising Lions out after 4th Straight
  4. ^
  5. ^ Smith, Slim (October 8, 2015). "Columbus loses a football legend". The Commercial Dispatch. Columbus, Mississippi. Retrieved December 11, 2018.
  6. ^
  7. ^

External linksEdit