Longtime Patriot Mosi Tatupu Dead at 54
According to the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Mosi Tatupu had been dealing with high blood pressure, along with other ailments, though the cause of death is currently unknown.
"He had some health issues," Barry Markowitz, a family friend of the Tatupus, told the Star-Bulletin.
Tatupu played 13 seasons in New England after being drafted No. 216 overall out of Southern Cal in 1978. Over that stretch he had 612 carries for 2,415 yards and 18 touchdowns, but he made his biggest mark as a standout special teams player -- he was named to the 1986 Pro Bowl as a special-teamer.
Tatupu, who played in the Patriots' Super Bowl XX loss to Chicago, also is the namesake of the Mosi Tatupu Award, which is given annually to the top special teams player in college football.
He was a fan favorite during his time with the Patriots, and even had his own cheering section called "Mosi's Mooses." He retired in 1991 after playing five games with the Los Angeles Rams.
Prior to going to USC, Tatupu was a star high school running back. He amassed 3,367 career yards rushing, a Hawaii state record that stood for 17 years. He had 223 rushing attempts for 1277 yards with the Trojans.
Tatupu had stayed active in the world of football after his retirement, and was the running backs coach at tiny Curry College in Waltham, Mass., at the time of his death.
"The world is not a better place," Curry head coach Skip Bandini told the Boston Globe on Tatupu's passing. "He was all of our players' favorite coach and he was all of our coaches' favorite coach. ... You're not going to meet a better person on the planet."