Billy Lange, well respected by Kentucky School for
the Deaf and the Mason-Dixon Deaf Athletic
Conference, quarterbacked the Gallaudet football
teams during the eighties.
In 1980, Gallaudet suspended football as a varsity
sport because of low turnout during daily pre-season
There was some talk of disbanding football for good.
After listening to comments from the alumni, the
administration decided to restart football in
1981 – but to play a short and tentative 5-game
schedule. It practically was a trial basis season.
Billy came on board as a first year student in
1981 and immediately joined the football team,
and became the team’s immediate starter at
Much more than what people would realize, everyone
was watching the football program. Lose all five
games and naysayers would say football was not
worth the effort on the Gallaudet campus. And
who knows, the administration could have closed
up football again!
Billy, blessed with top-notch receivers in
Pat Kuehn, Andy Bonheyo and Kelvin Milner,
steered the team to two big wins. The
three defeats were hard fought and could have
been wins if breaks came Gallaudet’s way.
After that season, football was here for good –
thanks to Billy’s long range touchdown bombs.
Did Billy have a great football career at
Gallaudet? No. He, unfortunately, tore his
ACL and was lost for the season as a sophomore.
While he returned and played one more season,
it wasn’t the same.
But to his credit, his stellar performance in
1981 saved the Gallaudet football program for
years to come.