June 29, 1962 -- One of the interesting parts of researching these daily facts is that relatively unknown information can come up without any notice. This is such a day.
For about four years, Buffalo hosted the Coaches' All-American football game at War Memorial Stadium. Some of the nation's best players played one last game against their peers before moving on to the pro ranks. In this particular contest, Bob Ferguson of Ohio State ran for 99 yards. Woody Hayes of Ohio State coached the East, with Ben Schwartzwalder of Syracuse assisting.
However, this 1962 game will always be known as the last football game Ernie Davis ever played.
Davis was one of the great stars in college football history. A top high school runner in Elmira, he led Syracuse to a national championship in 1959, and then became the first African-American Heisman Trophy winner in 1961.
He was projected to have a great future with the Cleveland Browns, who traded Bobby Mitchell (a Hall of Famer himself) to Washington to obtain the rights to Davis. The idea was for Davis to team up with another ex-Syracuse star, the immortal Jim Brown.
But fate got in the way. Davis contracted leukemia and never played a second in pro football.
--- Budd Bailey
This Birthday in Buffalo Sports History: John Stofa, UB quarterback - 1942.