Born: February 26, 1959
Lawrence William Kubin Jr. was born February 26, 1959 in Union. A talented multisport athlete, Larry starred in the town’s youth football and baseball programs. He was a standout pitcher and outfielder for Gordon LeMatty’s Union High baseball team, but it was as a football linebacker and running back that he drew the attention of college recruiters. He ended up following a long line of New Jersey prep stars and ended up as a member of the Penn State defensive line.
Larry’s breakthrough season came in 1979 as a junior defensive end, when he became the star of the Nittany Lions’ defense. He set a school record of 15 sacks, which was tied 23 years later by Michael Haynes and finally broken by Carl Nassib, who won the Ted Hendricks Award in 2015. Larry’s 23 tackles for losses also established a new school mark.
What could have been an All-America season in 1980 was cut short three games in by a knee injury. Larry was eligible to redo his senior year in 1981, but the Redskins talked him into entering the 1981 draft instead. They took him in the 6th round and he spent the 1981 on the practice squad while he rehabbed the knee
The ’Skins “Class of ’81” turned out to be one of the best in history. Besides Larry it included Hall of Famer Russ Grimm, Dexter Manley, Mark May, Darryl Grant, Clint Dider and Charlie Brown. Larry was a special teams star and backup linebacker on the 1982 and 1983 Super Bowl teams behind Neil Olkewicz. He saw action in all 16 games in 1984, his last with the team.
The most memorable moment in Larry’s career actually took place in practice. It was an unwritten rule that no one hit John Riggins between games, but during a goal-line stand drill Larry buried him with a savage tackle, separating Riggins from his helmet. Larry’s teammates picked him up and carried him off the field. Gibbs later said it was one of the funniest things he ever saw in all his years of coaching. Larry’s teammates began calling him Scrappy Doo after that.
Larry’s knee never fully healed. His last season in the NFL was 1985. The ’Skins traded him for a draft pick near the end of training camp. He played two games for the Bills and then four games for the Buccaneers.
Larry settled in the DC area after retiring from the game, but continued to test his physical limits cycling and surfing. He coached the Reston Little League team to a state title in 1997 and later his son, Jared, became one of the top prep baseball and basketball players in Virginia, earning a diamond scholarship to the University of Florida.