“Lost a Good One”: Jack Nicklaus Mourns the Passing of NFL Legend With Heartwarming Anecdote

Published 11/06/2021, 2:56 PM EDT
MADISON, WISCONSIN – JUNE 22: Jack Nicklaus speaks with a member of the gallery on the practice range before playing in the celebrity foursome during round two of the American Family Insurance Championship at the University Ridge Golf Course on June 22, 2019 in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)


Jack Nicklaus is one of the greatest golfers of all time. He has won 18 major championships in his career and is also at the top of the list with the most major wins. Moreover, he is also one of the most popular sporting icons in the United States and has many friends from other sports. 

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However, in an unfortunate turn of events, one of his close friends from the NFL, Tom Matte, passed away yesterday. Notably, Jack posted a condolence message on Instagram, recalling a few experiences of him and Tom. 

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Jack Nicklaus posts a message on Instagram after Tom Matte passes away

Jack Nicklaus was a close friend of Tom Matte who played in the NFL for 12 seasons for Baltimore Colts. Notably, he was also a Super Bowl Champion and a two-time All-Pro. However, their friendship goes back to the days when Jack and Tom were in school. The two legends studied at the Ohio State University and went to school together, in the same pledge class, and even shared a room. 

THE WOODLANDS, TX – MAY 07: Jack Nicklaus hits a shot during the 3M Greats of Golf during the second round of the Insperity Invitational at The Woodlands Country Club on May 7, 2016 in The Woodlands, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Meanwhile, Jack shared everything that he could about Tom in his recent Instagram post. “We lost a good one this week in my fraternity brother and good friend Tom Matte! Tom was a hard-nosed, fun-loving athlete,” Jack said.”And everybody loved him! I don’t care what sport you wanted to play. Matte was there to join you.”

Moreover, he also said that they played basketball and even volleyball together, and Tom loved to compete and would laugh through it the entire time. Furthermore, he shared an interesting experience he had with Tom. 

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Jack shares an interesting experience of his with Tom Matte

Nicklaus was close to Tom Matte and was attending a match when Tom and his Colts were playing in Super Bowl III against New York Jets. “He asked me to come down to the locker room after the game. Well, after Joe Namath backed up his guarantee for a win by the underdog Jets.”

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View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Jack Nicklaus (@jacknicklaus)

“I said, ‘No, I don’t think I’m going to that Colts’ locker room!’ But I decided to stop in there and pass along my condolences. I walked in, and Tom and the guys were acting like the season just ended and on a good note. Tom lived his life that way! When it was over, it was over, and Tom always walked away with a smile.”

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Concluding his post, he said, “Barbara and I want to send our heartfelt condolences to his wife Judy and their family. Tom Matte was such a great guy, a great friend, and he will certainly be missed!” 

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Amey Kulkarni

537 articles

Amey Kulkarni is a Golf writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his Bachelor’s degree in mass media from HR College, Mumbai. Before joining EssentiallySports he used to write articles on Golf and Cricket on his personal blog cricgolf.

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