Monthly Archives: July 2013

Charlie Tolar – The Houston Oilers Human Bowling Ball

The early Houston Oilers had a number of high-caliber players on their offense.  George Blanda, Billy Cannon, Charlie Hennigan and Bill Groman come immediately to mind.  They also had a running back by the name of Charlie Tolar, who wrought havoc on AFL defenses with his short yet stout frame, and immeasurable toughness.

At 5’7″ and 195 lbs., you might think that Charlie Tolar was a nimble, Barry Sanders-style of back.  But while Tolar was quick, and undoubtedly athletic, he preferred a more direct approach to the goal line than the shifty Sanders.  “I wasn’t an elusive runner,” recalled Tolar in Houston Oilers; The Early Years, by Kevin Carroll.  “If I could make a few yards running over somebody, I did.” read more

Wray Carlton Named to N.C. Sports Hall of Fame

Wray Carlton is one of those ballplayers who doesn’t usually receive the recognition that his is due, especially by those football fans outside of the Buffalo area.  Sharing time on a squad that featured Jack Kemp, Cookie Gilchrist and others, Carlton was often overshadowed on the Bills offense by players with bigger names (and personalities).

In January of 2012, however, Wray Carlton was tabbed for induction into the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame.  The full article can be found HERE, on the website of Carlton’s alma mater, Duke University. read more

My Collecting Experience with the 1962 Fleer Football Card Set

Being born in the 1970s, I never had the opportunity to open packs of AFL football cards.  By the time I began collecting 1960s football cards, their values had risen, and there was some difficulty in finding the cards that I needed.  As a result, my sets were slowly built with purchases on eBay and trades with other collectors.  Bob Swick, publisher of Gridiron Greats Magazine and general ambassador of football & memorabilia, has collected for decades.  In this neat little remembrance, Swick takes football card collecting back to a time before the internet, when sets really were built one card at a time, over the course of many years.  Enjoy!! read more

1968 Buffalo Bills vs. Cincinnati Bengals

The Cincinnati Bengals opened their inaugural season with a 2-1 record before a severe nosedive knocked them out of any postseason contention in 1968.  The Bengals were coming off a 24-10 victory over the Denver Broncos in Week Two, and in this game against the Bills showed more flashes of early season brilliance.

Week 3

  • Sunday September 22
Week 3
1 2 3 4 Final
Buffalo Bills (0–3–0) 0 7 7 9 23
Cincinnati Bengals (2–1–0) 10 0 10 14 34
CIN Dale Livingston 11-yard field goal 0 3
CIN Warren McVea 80-yard rush (Dale Livingston kick) 0 10
BUF Max Anderson 14-yard rush (Mike Mercer kick) 7 10
BUF Gary McDermott 5-yard rush (Mike Mercer kick) 14 10
CIN Dale Livingston 39-yard field goal 14 13
CIN Charlie King 32-yard interception return (Dale Livingston kick) 14 20
CIN Al Beauchamp 17-yard interception return (Dale Livingston kick) 14 27
BUF Max Anderson 100-yard kickoff return (Mike Mercer kick) 21 27
BUF Safety, Robinson tackled in end zone 23 27
CIN Tommie Smiley 1-yard rush (Dale Livingston kick) 23 34
First downs 17 9
Rush-yards-TDs 24–92–2 29–149–2
Comp-Att-Yd-TD-INT 15–36–160–0–2 8–18–68–0–1
Sacked-yards 5–37 2–16
Net pass yards 123 52
Total yards 215 201
Fumbles-lost 1–0 2–1
Turnovers 2 2
Penalties-yards 5–65 6–34

A Place in the Desert

The Chargers 1963 training camp at the Rough Acres Ranch in Boulevard, California, has been the stuff of legend in San Diego since the Bolts came down out of the desert in September ’63, and commenced to making mincemeat of their AFL counterparts.  Even the Boston Patriots and their “red dog”-infested defense couldn’t contain the Chargers that season, as San Diego won their first, and only, professional football championship. read more