SBD/March 14, 2011/People and Pop Culture

Longtime NFL Agent Gary Wichard Remembered As Inspiration For "Jerry Maguire"

Wichard dies at the age of 60 from
diabetes and pancreatic cancer
Longtime NFL player agent GARY WICHARD passed away Friday at the age of 60 "from diabetes and pancreatic cancer," according to the AP. An agent since '80, Wichard's NFL clients included Colts DE DWIGHT FREENEY, Jets DE JASON TAYLOR and CB ANTONIO CROMARTIE and Panthers QB JIMMY CLAUSEN, among many others. He was "suspended for nine months" by the NFLPA in December for his involvement with former Univ. of North Carolina football player MARVIN AUSTIN. He also was "investigated last year by the NCAA" (AP, 3/11). In Charlotte, Ken Tysiac noted the North Carolina Secretary of State's office last week "executed a search warrant on a Bank of America account belonging to Wichard in Raleigh." Secretary of State spokesperson GEORGE JETER said that the office's investigation "will remain active and ongoing" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 3/12). ESPN.com's Tom Friend noted Wichard "was the inspiration" for the movie "JERRY MAGUIRE." He entered the agent business "at the urging" of Basketball HOFer JULIUS ERVING, a friend from Long Island who "introduced him to his own agent, IRWIN WEINER." Wichard "made his name in the late 1980s when he represented" Univ. of Oklahoma players, including LB BRIAN BOSWORTH and TE KEITH JACKSON. His players said that Wichard's own "football background and loyalty is what appealed to them most" (ESPN.com, 3/11).
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