Category Archives: Ron Mix
I recently put together an article about the Chargers last game as an AFL franchise for Sports Collectors Daily. It is kind of amazing to think of the important moments in pro football history that occurred during that game. First, it was the last AFL game for the San Diego Chargers and Buffalo Bills. Second, it was Ron Mix’s last game as a Charger – he later came out of retirement to play for the Raiders, much to the chagrin of Chargers owner, Gene Klein. Finally, that was the game that lance Alworth broke Don Hutson’s record with 96 consecutive games with a reception. Pretty amazing for a single game.
I was looking through YouTube for AFL videos and came across this highlight piece on the Chargers vs. Bills game from December 14, 1969. This was the last game these two teams played as members of the American Football League, and as such carried a degree of importance. It was also notable to Chargers fans as the game in which Lance Alworth broke Don Hutson’s record by going 96 consecutive games with a reception. Additionally, it was Ron Mix’s last game as a Charger. Mix had initially planned to end his football career, but was later lured out of retirement to play for Al Davis and the Oakland Raiders. Mix’s “unretirement” upset Chargers owner Gene Klein so much, that he had Mix’s #74 put back into circulation, though the team had previously retired the number in honor of the great tackle.
A book is currently being written about former Chargers linebacker, Frank Buncom. Lee “Buzz” Ponce, a one-time ballboy for the AFL Chargers is authoring the work. Ponce has kindly offered up a chapter of the book for our enjoyment on Tales from the American Football League. The Sports Illustrated article to which Ponce refers can be found HERE.
A remarkable insight into the American Football League and professional sports can be found in a primordial Sports Illustrated article from September, 1968. It’s noteworthy on several levels: how it still resonates even today in portraying the delicate balance between player salaries and team chemistry, and how it captures the mood of professional sports long before the advent of free agency and multi-million dollar player contracts.
When the AFL and NFL finally merged after the 1969 season, the Pro Football Hall of Fame went about selecting AFL All-Time Team. The announcement of awardees was made through the newspapers on January 14, 1970. According to the Pro Football Hall of Fame website, the ballotting was particularly close at defensive tackle and cornerback. The selection of a head coach was also very close, with Weeb Ewbank, Sid Gillman and Hank Stram all in the running. The AFL All-Time Team was officially presented at the last game in AFL history, the All-Star Game that was held in Houston on January 17, 1970.
|1961 Golden Tulips Chargers Ron Mix card|
|Back of a standard Golden Tulips card|
|Maury Schleicher Golden Tulips Premium|