Stretch of highway near Greeley is named after former Husker punter Sam Foltz

Originally Posted February 10, 2022 in the Nebraska Examiner. Written by Paul Hammel.

A small Nebraska town has won approval to memorialize a local football hero.

A portion of Nebraska Highway 56 near Greeley has now been officially designated as the “Sam Foltz Memorial Highway.”

Foltz, whose family is from the Greeley area, was a star punter for the Huskers until being tragically killed in a vehicle accident in Wisconsin in July 2016.

Foltz attended Grand Island High School and joined the University of Nebraska football team as a walk-on, meaning he wasn’t given a scholarship. But he eventually earned a scholarship and blossomed into the Big 10 punter of the year in 2015. Foltz was seen as a prime prospect for the NFL.

Gov. Pete Ricketts signed a resolution last week naming a 12.9-mile segment of Highway 56 after Foltz. Five generations of the Foltz family have farmed along that stretch of highway, including Sam Foltz’s parents, Gerald and Jill Foltz.

The Greeley Citizen reported that the naming project was launched by a local committee of citizens led by Mary Ann McQuillan of Greeley. A fund-raising campaign has been launched through the First National Bank in Greeley to defray costs of signage along the highway.

The State Highway Commission, which governs the naming of highways, approved the request in December.