January 30: This Date in American Football History

California Golden BearsFormer California Golden Bear defensive back Deltha O’Neal was born on this date in 1977.

O’Neal played for the Golden Bears in the late 1990’s, and in his senior season in 1999, he set an NCAA single-season record by returning four interceptions for touchdowns. He was named a Consensus All-American by the NCAA following the season, and then was selected with the 15th overall pick by the Denver Broncos in the first round of the 2000 NFL Draft.

O’Neal spent four seasons with the Broncos (2000-2003) followed by another four seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals (2004-2007). It was in Cincinnati that he enjoyed his finest season as a pro in 2005 when he tied for the league lead with 10 interceptions. He spent one season with the New England Patriots in 2008 before signing with the Houston Texans the following summer. He never saw any action for the Texans, however, and retired before ever playing another down in the NFL.




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