CINCINNATI, Ohio. (famuathletics.com) — Ken Riley epitomized Rattler greatness. The Florida A&M alum left behind a lasting imprint as a former football student-athlete, head coach, and athletics director at the University, and his legacy continued with a recent election to the Cincinnati Bengals' inaugural ring of honor.
Riley passed last year, at the age of 72, nearly four decades after retiring from the franchise he spent his entire playing career (1969-83). He recorded 65 interceptions in 207 starts for the Bengals, for a tally that ranked fourth-most in NFL history at the time of his retirement, and still sits atop the franchise's all-time list today.
The entire ring of honor class is set to be installed at halftime of the Bengals' Sept. 30 game against the Jaguars at Paul Brown Stadium.
"I think I speak for everyone in Rattler Nation when I say that we are extremely overjoyed about Ken Riley's induction into the Ring of Honor," said head coach Willie Simmons. "No one is more deserving!"
A four-year letter winner at quarterback for Florida A&M, Riley guided the Rattlers to a 23-7 record and three Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference titles. He took over head coaching duties at his alma mater in 1986, and an eight-year stint featured two Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) championships and a pair of MEAC Coach of the Year honors.
Riley also served as the Rattlers' athletics director from 1993-2004.
His esteemed career garnered inductions into the FAMU Athletics Hall of Fame in 1982 and the Black College Football Hall of Fame in 2015.