Jim Winston, of the Class of 1983, is regarded as one of the top defensive football players to ever wear the Purple and Cardinal at Linfield.
As a senior, Winston was a key member of Linfield’s 1982 NAIA National Championship team. In the title game, he had three tackles as the Wildcats defeated William Jewell (Mo.) 33-15.
Playing defensive guard, Winston was greatly recognized for his play during the championship season. He was selected as an NAIA first-team All-American and an Associated Press Little All-American, and was also chosen as the Wildcats’ defensive player of the year. Winston was also one of 16 athletes nominated for the Oregon Amateur Athlete of the Year Award.
In addition to the national championship team, Winston was a member of two Northwest Conference championship programs in 1980 and 1982. The 1980 team went undefeated in regular-season play, and the 1982 team won every game en route to the national title.
Today, he still stands as the Wildcats’ all-time single-season leader in yards from sacks and the career leader in yards from tackles for loss. In total, he ranks among the top-10 in 12 different statistical defensive categories at Linfield.
Winston says he has no regrets about his athletic career. He is proud to be part of a team that accomplished its goal of winning a national championship. “It’s something that will stay with me throughout my entire life.”
After graduating, Winston played with the Bologna Warriors of the Italian Football League from 1984-86. He helped his team reach the Italian Superbowl his first year overseas.
Winston currently owns his own video production service and lives in Rolling Hills, Calif., with his 12-year-old son, Liam.