Two former NFL players and a veteran athlete, coach and umpire were honored two weeks ago at the Oldtimers Bats and Balls Association meeting at Randi’s Restaurant & Bar in Bustleton.
Former Eagles defensive tackle Hollis Thomas, former Cleveland Browns and New Orleans Saints punter George Winslow, and John McArdle, a college baseball umpire and coach and former athlete at Chestnut Hill Academy, were honored at the Feb. 13 luncheon.
The Eagles signed Thomas as an undrafted free agent out of Northern Illinois University. He played for the Eagles from 1996 to 2005 and later spent time with the Saints, St. Louis Rams and Carolina Panthers. Now 39, he appears weekends on SportsRadio WIP (94.1 FM).
Winslow, 49, grew up in Bustleton and played sports for Bustleton Boys Club, now called the Bustleton Bengals. He attended La Salle High School, where he played football as a punter, kicker and wide receiver. He punted for the University of Wisconsin before transferring to Villanova University after the death of his mom. He kicked for the Cleveland Browns in 1987 and the Saints in ’89. He was also in training camp with the Buffalo Bills. Sean Landeta, who punted for the Eagles and the Philadelphia Stars of the old USFL, presented Winslow with his plaque.
Ryan Winslow, George’s son, is a senior at La Salle High. A punter/kicker in football and center on the basketball team, he has accepted a scholarship to punt for the University of Pittsburgh.
McArdle, 58, grew up in Crispin Gardens. He was on the football, basketball, wrestling and baseball teams at Chestnut Hill Academy. He went on to play catcher and third base for Temple’s baseball team. As a senior in 1977, he helped the Owls win the NCAA Eastern Regional and qualify for the College World Series.
His coaching experience includes 17 years as CHA’s basketball coach, seven years as its baseball coach and six years as a Temple assistant baseball coach.
Today, he remains an assistant football coach at his high school alma mater, which recently changed its name to Springside Chestnut Hill Academy after a merger with the neighboring all-girls school. He’s worked at the school for 32 years and teaches physical education to elementary school students.
Frank McArdle, John’s late father, was previously honored by the Oldtimers. The elder McArdle was founder of Crispin Athletic Association.
The Oldtimers, a group of former athletes and officials, meet four times a year at Randi’s, at 1619 Grant Ave in Grant Plaza II.
Bobby Shantz, former American League Most Valuable Player, and former pro football player Joe Scarpati, were among those who attended the luncheon. Scarpati is best known as the holder for Tom Dempsey’s NFL-record 63-yard field goal in 1970.
The next Oldtimers luncheon will be at noon on Wednesday, May 8, at Randi’s. Future meetings will be on Aug. 14 and Nov. 13. Lunch costs $11.
For more information on the group, call Chuck Newns (215-612-0476), Ron Fritz (215-491-9380), Jack Purdy (215-968-0404) or Ron March (609-209-0849), or visit www.batsandballs.org ••