Hall of Fame Inductee - Jim Gilbert

A 1971 Quincy graduate and two-sport standout, Jim Gilbert used his strength as a kicker and punter to become just the second Quincy High product to play professional football. Gilbert was drafted by the Chicago Winds of the World Football League in 1975, playing one season before the league folded. It took a fortunate phone call to make it possible. As a senior at QHS, Gilbert was co-captain of the football team and set the school record for punting average at 39.5 yards. Baseball, however, would be his path to college. An all-state outfielder as a junior and senior, Gilbert hit .371 in 1971 and led Quincy to a 25-9 record and a state quarterfinal appearance — one of only three state appearances in program history. He accepted a baseball scholarship to Northern Illinois University, but clerical errors left him without housing or registration at the beginning of his freshman season. His barrage of urgent phone calls ended with an assistant football coach answering. The coach remembered Gilbert, helped him with housing and registration and convinced him to walk on to the football team. Gilbert spent three seasons as the Huskies punter, averaging 38.2 yards per kick. As the NIU placekicker his junior and senior seasons, Gilbert connected on 41 of 50 extra points and 7 of 12 field goals.

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