Recognized by Tidewater coaches and fans as one of the greatest athletes to ever play in the Hampton Roads area, Ken Easley was a multiple sport star at Chesapeake’s Oscar Smith High School. The talented athlete played football at this school from 1973 to 1977 and was voted All-Southeastern District, All-Tidewater, All-State, All-South and All-American. He was later named to the All-Tidewater Golden Jubilee Team covering fifty years from 1932-1982.
Advancing to college at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Easley was a three-time consensus All-American and the first player in PAC-10 history to be named All-Conference for four years.
In 1981, the Seattle Seahawks chose Easley as their first round pick in the NFL draft. Easley proved himself a worthy choice as he earned NFL All-Rookie honors and was named AFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. He followed up his first year in grand fashion, starting a four-year string of All-Pro, All-AFC and All-NFL selections. Twice during his five-year career, Easley was named the Seahawks’ Most Valuable Player, and in 1983-84, he was selected as both AFC and NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
Following the 1987 season, Easley announced his retirement from the NFL due to injuries sustained during his career. Easley was inducted into the Oscar Smith High School Hall of Fame in 1987, and in 1991, his peers recognized him for his accomplishments as he was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
Translating his talents and drive into a non-sports, but equally competitive environment, Easley went on to become a successful businessman in Norfolk, Virginia.