It has been a long, winding road to success in pro football for former Glendale College quarterback Bob Gagliano of the Detroit Lions.
Gagliano started at Glendale, then transferred to U.S. International. After USIU dropped football, he finished at Utah State.
The Kansas City Chiefs drafted him in the 12th round in 1981, but he played in only two games in three years. When the United States Football League came along, Gagliano joined the Denver Gold, where he played for Coach Mouse Davis and learned his run-and-shoot offense.
After the USFL folded, Gagliano spent parts of 1986 and '87 with the San Francisco 49ers before dropping out of football. He was attending firefighters' school last spring when the Lions called. Davis was coaching the Lions' offense and needed a player familiar with his system.
Gagliano has started the last two games and threw the winning touchdown pass against the New Orleans Saints on Dec. 3. Gagliano was playing in relief of former Trojan Rodney Peete, who was injured.
"A lot can be said for perseverance," Gagliano said. "I've always felt a player should stay even-keeled during the bad times as well as the good times. This year has been a pleasant surprise."