Mark Gustafson

(City) State or Country Corvallis, OR

LA Times: A Run for the Roses

O.J. Simpson's 64-Yarder Against UCLA Helped Send USC on to Pasadena and a National Championship


For 25 years, they have relived that darned run: a 64-yard nightmare for all the UCLA players O.J. Simpson left in his wake on his way to tying a game that had more than roses at stake.

Simpson headed for the sideline behind Drake, who was trying to block UCLA safety Sandy Green.

"I was on the sideline and I felt that if I could get back to the middle of the field I might be able to outrun those guys to the end zone," Simpson said. "So I just cut to the middle, went by a couple of guys and our Earl McCullouch was making a screening block on Green."

Simpson cut back in at UCLA's 40 and headed toward the middle at about the 30.

But the Bruins had one last chance.

"Well at that point in time, after 10 people had missed him, it was all up to me and I was in the wrong place to do it," said Mark Gustafson, who played safety. "I was one of the last guys to have a chance to tackle him, and I didn't even touch him.

"He was going one direction and I was going the other, and he kind of cut back across the field. He surprised me, and I was trying to cut him off further up the field because I knew how fast he was. I overplayed it and he cut back across the green, and once he did that with his speed there wasn't any way to make up for my mistake."

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Michael Lyne has left an In Memory comment for Mark Gustafson.
Sep 19, 2021 at 8:18 PM

Sincere condolences to all of Mark's relatives and close friends. To say he was an outstanding classmate is a bit of an understatement. To have a sports writer classify him with the likes of Terry Baker, the greatest 3 sports athlete in Oregon history in both high school and college is quite a feat. I was privy to a few family nuances in junior high and high school as Helen Gustafson worked with my mother at First National Bank in Corvallis. As for the care givers and others, a thank you seems not quite enough appreciation for the years of help they gave,. I sufferred a severe brain injury and a few concussions growing up in the woods before my father was transferred to Corvallis so I understand what living with the problem is like, One day we all will be able to say what Isaiah 33:4 says, "No resident will say they are sick."  Keep praying for God's kingdom to come on earth as it is in the heaven.

Sandy Cheldelin has left an In Memory comment for Mark Gustafson.
Sep 18, 2021 at 11:56 PM


Who did not love Mark/Gus?  This is a wonderful reflection of what I suspect are just a few of the highlights of his life.  Thank you.  I send deep condolescences to his family and loved ones and want to celebrate his life that sounds amazing.  I agree with Roger--thank you for suggesting ways we can recognize important  issues for his legacy.  May he RIP!




Mark Gustafson has been added to In Memory.
Sep 17, 2021 at 10:15 PM
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Posted: Sep 22, 2021 at 3:56 PM