Lee Roy Selmon, Hall of Fame football player, suffers stroke

9:17 PM, Sep 2, 2011   |    comments
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Lee Roy Selmon

TAMPA, Florida - Dewey Selmon, the brother of Tampa Bay Buccaneers legend Lee Roy Selmon, tells 10 News Friday evening that the NFL Hall-of-Famer is currently alive and in serious condition.  He says his brother is "showing signs of progress" after suffering a stroke Friday at his home in Tampa.

However, word of Selmon's death spread prematurely after his namesake restaurant chain accidentally put out a press release announcing his death.

10 News has confirmed Selmon, 56, was unconscious and not breathing when first responders arrived at his home and took him to the hospital. 

Dewey Selmon says the family will not be making any further statements tonight.

Photo Gallery: Lee Roy Selmon pictures

Selmon was the first-ever draft pick for the expansion Buccaneers in 1976, after an All-American career and two national titles at the University of Oklahoma.

The defensive end would go on to win the Rookie of the Year award, MVP award, and go to six Pro Bowls.  Selmon was the first player inaugurated into the Bucs' Ring of Honor in 2009.

Selmon remained pivotal in the Tampa Bay area after his career, through local charities as well as his popular restaurant chain, Lee Roy Selmon's.  He also worked as Athletics Director for the University of South Florida and Tampa's Crosstown Expressway was later renamed the "Selmon Expressway." 

USF President Judy Genshaft and Athletics Director Doug Woolard issued a joint statement after the news broke:

"We recently learned that Lee Roy Selmon was admitted to a hospital. Our thoughts and prayers are with Lee Roy and his family. We are honoring the family's request for privacy at this time."

WDAE-AM radio host Dan Sileo posted on Twitter, "I consider Lee Roy Selmon a very close friend and I will miss him...wow...spoke to him 3 days ago...crushed."

Oklahoma fans began posting prayers on a private Sooners message board, including:

"Sobering news, to be certain. LRS certainly is the greatest Sooner player ever."

10 News will have more on this developing story throughout the evening.

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