Eric Cross #40

Position: Flanker/Split End 

Height: 5’11”, Weight 180

Hometown: Alameda, California


High School:

Eric was a three sport star at Alameda High School; he was a gifted receiver as well as running back, and was the cornerstone of the highest-ranked Hornet team of all-time in 1968.

      - 1967 All ACAL 1st team

      - In the 1968 season:

                        Season scoring record 150-pts (25 TDs/9 games)

                        In The Big Game, ran for 115-yds and scored 4 TDs

                        All ACAL 1st team

                        All Northern California, First Team
1968 AHS football team was ranked #1 in the state and #8 in the nation.

      - 1969/North-South All Star Shrine Game, where he set a then Shrine Game record of 4 TDs


At Stanford:

Best remembered for his 41 yard run on Stanford’s first play against Ohio State in the 1971 Rose Bowl game…Was victimized by a painful hamstring pull most of the ’71 season…Reinjured the leg again in the Big Game against California to limit his action against Michigan in the 1972 Rose Bowl…If healthy, a game breaker as either a punt returner or receiver…Returned a punt for 61 yards and a TD against Arkansas in the nationally televised 1970 season opener…One of the most popular Cards of them all.


Career Highlights:

Member of back-to-back Rose Bowl Championship teams (1970 & 1971)

Led the Pac-8 in receptions during the 1972 season with (53). Tied for 9th overall in touchdowns with (9)

Most receptions in one game (14 - Hawaii - 12/2/1972) – Tied for All-Time Team Record

Most yards receiving one game: (172 - Hawaii - 12/2/1972) – 11th most All-Time


Career Statistics:



Receiving Yards


Rushing Yards




















 *1971 Rose Bowl



September 21, 2006

My mother always used to say, "Don't ever get crossit doesn't help!

Well, Stanford got a little guy named Eric Cross from across the Bay in Alameda about thirty-six years ago, and he helped that Stanford "Indian" football team of those early 1970's a whole lot.

They used to have an old football term, "scatback" for little quick players who were fast, shifty, and could make big time plays. That describes Eric, and did he ever love to play football.

He always had a big smile, tremendous energy, and, with the football, he could go from zero to 60 in one split second. He loved little games, surprises, and anything that made other people laugh or maybe get a little embarrassed.

It was the great Rose Bowl season of 1970 up at Joe Albi Stadium in Spokane, and Stanford was taking on the same team they are playing this week, the Washington State Cougars.

Stanford had a 4-1 record, having beaten the Trojans 24-14 the week before, and the only loss was to a very strong Purdue team 26-14 the week before that. But, more about that game with the Cougars. Early in the second quarter, Jim Plunkett hit Randy Vataha with a 96-yard touchdown pass. It was somewhere around mid-field that Randy caught that magic pass and sprinted the rest of the way for the score. Along the way this long gainer made Jim the all time record holder for total offense in the entire history of college football. It also didn't hurt the great Stanford All American in his consideration for the Heisman Trophy.

But, back to Eric Cross now. Early in the game my old radio partner Don Klein and I noticed a group of Cougar students, about 10 or 12 guys across the way, down low in the stands at about the 10-yard line. They had a very carefully concealed keg and they had shown very early evidence of being quite thirsty. Now, we were well into the third quarter, the boys had been quenching a thirst for a couple of hours, and those wild "Indians" of that time led


Eric took a kind of "bootleg" reverse from Plunkett, turned it up field from left to right, and was in the clear to go all the way. Well, one of these guys from the "Suds in the Afternoon" group stumbled out of the stands, and set himself up as the Cougars only defender, well out on the field at the 10-yard line. Eric could have run right by the guy, but he hit him about mid-ships with a low shoulder and left footprints on his legs, his belly, and his shoulder. I asked Eric why he didn't by-pass him, and in standard Eric Cross fashion, he said, "the guy came out for a little excitement and I didn't want him to be disappointed."

Another great "Cross-ism" for your notebook! It was two years later and we were playing the University of Hawaii in Honolulu at the old stadium. Mike Boryla had a great day throwing the ball, Stanford was winning easy, and with just a few seconds to go, our old pal Eric Cross had 13 catches. Someone, probably me, send word down to the bench that the all-time Stanford record for catches in a game was 13, and held by Gene Washington back in 1968.

Word was sent out to Boryla, and with time running out, he threw a little flat pass to Eric out on the left side. Eric made a nice little basket catch, put a knee down for about a 4-yard loss, and ran off the field with the ball. The record is still 14, and Eric is right there with it, along with Vincent White (1982), Brad Muster (1985), and Jim Price (1989).

Thanks for staying with me this long. I can get a little carried away with some of these great memories.


Story borrowed from Murph's Memories


A member of the Class of '53, Bob Murphy, the "Voice of the Cardinal" has been involved in Stanford Athletics for over 50 years. He is currently the play-by-play voice for Stanford's men's basketball radio broadcasts and the color analyst on Cardinal football broadcasts and a familiar emcee at many Stanford Athletic events. Murph concluded a Hall of Fame career as Cardinal by helping Stanford earn a berth in the 1953 College World Series. He was Stanford's Sports Information Director from 1964-72, which included the 1970 and '71 Rose Bowl teams. A former Athletic Director at San Jose State, Murph, who is a member of the Stanford Athletic Hall of Fame, has been a member of the Cardinal broadcast team since 1964.

His vast knowledge and insight of Stanford University and its athletic history will provide a unique perspective to Cardinal fans.


(Information courtesy of the Stanford University Athletic Department and