Former Oklahoma Sooners star cornerback Rickey Dixon has died at the age of 53. Dixon had been battling ALS (Lou Gherig’s disease) since 2014.
His former head coach Barry Switzer made the announcement on Twitter. Switzer said his family was by his side when he passed away. He also called Dixon one of the greatest players to ever play at OU.
Dixon was the first Jim Thorpe Award winner from OU taking home the honor in 1987. Dixon was also inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2019.
Originally from Dallas, Dixon joined OU in 1984 and was a mainstay in the secondary. Known as a ferocious hitter, Dixon also covered a lot of ground in the secondary. Ultimately, Dixon notched 170 tackles, 23 pass break ups and 17 interceptions in an Oklahoma uniform. At the time, his 17 picks were second in school history.
Dixon was drafted fifth overall in the 1988 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. He played there for five seasons before joining the Los Angeles Raiders in 1993 in his final professional season.
In all, Dixon played in 82 games hauling in six interceptions and a fumble recovery during his time in the NFL.
Following his football career, Dixon owned a landscaping business, coached high school football and was a motivational speaker.