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1964 Buffalo Baseball

Posted on: | by Scott Hollander | No Comments

1st – Oatmeyer, Johnson, Montemerano, Bremigan, Zelman, Rothschild, Barto, Wasula, Peelle
2nd – Kosobucki, Wianecki, McEwan, DelBello, Gergley, Whelan, Lyon, Riter, Stofa

A lot was expected of the 1964 Buffalo Bulls Baseball team. It had virtually the entire squad back from the previous year.

The 1963 (14-2) team participated in an NCAA tourney the previous year in Hampden-Sydney, Va., winning the first game and losing the second for a second-place finish.

Coach Jim Peelle felt the 1964 team had an excellent chance of getting another bid to one of the NCAA’s regional tournaments. He noted, “We have the best material, the strongest nucleus of any baseball team I’ve ever coached…”.

For the first time in recent history, the University of Buffalo home baseball games were broadcasted by radio station WBFO. The student-run campus radio station hoped to bring the student body closer to U.B. athletic events.

The Western New York Intercollegiate Baseball Conference consisted of Buffalo State, Canisius College, Erie County Tech, Niagara University,  St. Bonaventure University and the University at Buffalo. In 1964, U.B. won the conference title for the tenth year in a row. The baseball Bulls finished the regular season with a 13-3 mark, with the high spots reached in victories over Colgate and Cornell.

Original Yankee StadiumThe 1964 Buffalo team was again invited to the NCAA College Division Atlantic Region tournament. The 1964 tournament was played at the original Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. The U.B. players must have been very excited to play in such an environment. The 1964 New York Yankees, featuring Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris, played the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series. The Bulls lost both of its 1964 tournaments games finishing the year at 13-5. (see “Old Dominion Tips UB in NCAA Play” Buffalo Courier-Express, 6 June 1964)

Dale DelBello did an excellent job at first base, according to Peelle, who was equally boastful of his outfield of John Stofa, Lynn Johnson and Jim Kraft. Larry Gergley headed the pitching contingent that included Ed Wianecki and Bill Zelman as the winningest. Bill Barto, star shortstop of the team, was named to the All-America first team of the NCAA College Division. Barto hit .338 for the season.

For more information on baseball at the University at Buffalo, visit the UB Sports History Collection website.

Craig Lyons Earl Tompkins Steve Wasula

1964 Buffalo Baseball Season

Date Home Team Score Visiting Team W-L-T Location
4/14/1964 Buffalo 12 – 0 Canisius College W Buffalo, NY
4/15/1964 Buffalo 11 – 2 Erie County Technical Institute W Buffalo, NY
4/17/1964 Syracuse University 13 - 2
Buffalo L Syracuse, NY
4/18/1964 Buffalo 3 – 7 Gannon University L Buffalo, NY
4/19/1964 Buffalo 5 – 2 Rochester Tech (RIT) W Buffalo, NY
4/20/1964 Canisius College 7 – 22 Buffalo W Buffalo, NY
4/28/1964 Cornell University 3 – 5 Buffalo W Ithaca, NY
5/2/1964 Rochester Tech (RIT) 0 - 8 Buffalo W Rochester, NY
5/5/1964 Buffalo 1 – 3 St. Bonaventure University L Buffalo, NY
5/5/1964 Buffalo 10 – 1 St. Bonaventure University W Buffalo, NY
5/6/1964 Buffalo 8 – 0 Buffalo State W Buffalo, NY
5/7/1964 Buffalo 8 – 0 Geneseo State W Buffalo, NY
5/9/1964 Colgate University 5 – 6 Buffalo W Hamilton, NY
5/11/1964 Buffalo 4 - 2
Niagara University W Buffalo, NY
5/11/1964 Buffalo 12 - 0
Niagara University W Buffalo, NY
5/12/1964 Erie County Technical Institute 5 – 7 Buffalo W Buffalo, NY
5/12/1964 University of Rochester canceled Buffalo Buffalo, NY

NCAA Atlantic Tournament at Yankee Stadium
6/5/1964 Old Dominion  7 – 2 Buffalo L New York, NY
6/6/1964 Central Connecticut  4 – 2 Buffalo L New York, NY


Coach: Jim Peelle
: Clark Field

Old Dominion Tips UB in NCAA PlayOld Dominion Tips UB in NCAA Play

Special to The Courier-Express

NEW YORK – Old Dominion College of Norfolk, Va., scored seven unearned runs five after two were out in the fifth inning to defeat the University of Buffalo baseball team, 7-2, in the NCAA Atlantic Coast Tournament at Yankee Stadium Friday.

The Bulls will meet Central Connecticut State College in the consolation game at 10 a.m. today before Old Dominion faces Long Island University, which beat Central Connecticut, 1-0.

Last year, the same Old Dominion team knocked Buffalo out of the same tourney 9-0, in the final game at Hampden Sydney, Va.

Friday nothing seemed to go right for the Bulls, who outhit the Monarchs 11 to 6 but could produce only two runs and did not score until the seventh, when they trailed, 7-0.

Buffalo threatened from the start with Earle Tomkins’ walk and a double by Bill Barto, but John Stofa’s pop to third and a looper by Lynn Johnson caught by the left fielder ended the rally.

Buffalo player Dale DelBello (#3) at Yankee Stadium, June 5, 1964

Ball Miscues Hurt

Old Dominion touched Larry Gergley for two runs in the second after two singles put men on first and third. Tomkins let a grounder go through at second for one run, and Gerry Montemano’s passed ball accounted for the other.

Meanwhile, Buffalo was hitting but not scoring with one safety in the second, two in the third, two in the fourth and one in the fifth. In the fifth the Virginians broke it open on five runs.

With two out, third baseman Steve booted a grounder and Gergley was touched for a walk, and triple, a walk, a triple and two more walks. Spiced in with another error, a stolen base and a wild pitch, they added up to a disastrous five-ran outburst.

The Bulls finally made the scoring column in the seventh on Gergley’s triple to right center and Washula’s infield out. They added their last run In the eighth on two errors by Old Dominion’s shortstop and Gergley’s single to center.

Barto was the leading Buffalo hitter with 4-5. His chance for a perfect day was ruined by a ninth inning pop foul to third. Dan Kraft, Wasula and Gergley each accounted for two hits. But the Bulls couldn’t get them when they counted and suffered frustration at the hands of Old Dominion for the second successive season.

Buffalo Courier-Express, June 6, 1964

1950s U.B. Grads Become Pro Wrestlers

Posted on: | by Scott Hollander | 1 Comment

In the early 1950′s, Don Beitelman and Bob Leipler, two University at Buffalo graduates and teammates, entered the wild world of professional wrestling. Don Beitelman, who legally changed his name to Don Curtis, had a long Hall of Fame career. In 2012, he was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in Waterloo, Iowa.  Bob Leipler, who at times wrestled under the name Duke Hoffman, also had a successful 15-year career.


Don Beitelman - 1949 Bulls Football

Don Beitelman – 1949 Bulls Football

Don Beitelman a.k.a. Don Curtis

Don Beitelman a.k.a. Don Curtis

Don Beitelman attended the University at Buffalo from 1947 to 1951 and played football and wrestled. Beitelman reportedly went through four seasons of college wrestling competition without having his shoulders pinned.

After graduating, he was offered a contract to play football for the Baltimore Colts but he chose professional wrestling because at that time it paid more money. He made his Buffalo pro wrestling debut on June 29, 1951 in front of 10,000 fans at the Buffalo Memorial Auditorium. (see “10,402 See Togo Score Over GG in Aud Battle” Buffalo Courier-Express, 30 June 1951)

Beitelman went to New Zealand and Australia where he became a star. When he returned, he changed his name to Don Curtis. In his prime, he formed a formidable tag-team with Mark Lewin. The duo captured several regional and world championships. Don’s dynamic wrestling career lasted until the early 1970s after which he made a successful transition to coach, referee and member of the United States Olympic Committee for wrestling.

In 1980, Curtis was inducted into the University at Buffalo Athletics Hall of Fame for his contributions to U.B. and the sport of wrestling. He died on March 6, 2008.


Bob Leipler - 1949 Bulls Football

Bob Leipler – 1949 Bulls Football

Bob Leipler a.k.a. Duke Hoffman

Bob Leipler a.k.a. Duke Hoffman

Bob Leipler attended the University at Buffalo graduating in 1951 with a bachelor’s degree in education. He played mostly football. Leipler did not take up college wrestling until his senior year.

Leipler signed a contract with football’s Chicago Bears in 1951. (see “Leipler of UB Signs With Bears” Buffalo Courier-Express, 19 May 1951)  A back injury prevented him from fulfilling the contract.

He instead followed Beitelman’s lead and pursued a career in professional wrestling. Leipler made his Buffalo pro debut on February 8, 1952 in front of 4,495 fans at the Buffalo Memorial Auditorium. The Beitleman and Leipler actually wrestled against each other early on as seen by this August 14, 1952 Binghamton (N.Y.) Press newspaper advertisement.

Leipler had a successful 15-year career that took him to venues around the globe, facing off against the sport’s top contenders. Leipler, along with Larry Hennig, won the American Wrestling Association (AWA) World Tag Team Champion in 1962.

After retirement from wrestling, Leipler worked at the Attica Correctional Facility as a physical education teacher from 1973 until his retirement in 1990. He died on December 24, 2002.

For more information on football at the University at Buffalo, visit the UB Sports History Collection website.

10,402 See Togo Score Over GG in Aud Battle10,402 See Togo Score Over GG in Aud Battle

by Ray Ryan

Gorgeous George turned in by far his outstanding Buffalo bout in a vain cause last night in Memorial Auditorium as he bowed to the Great Togo before a remarkable Summer wrestling assemblage of 10,402. Apparently enjoying to the utmost the unique experience of being cheered to the echo, the Pacific Coast showman appeared headed for victory when the end came with startling suddenness at 22:06.

GG had made the Jap wince with flying hip locks, and had countered Togo’s feared chops with flurries of punches. His slams had Referee George Baltz counting over Togo on more than a few occasions. Stealing Togo’s thunder, Gorgeous once bowed mockingly. Then, when Togo stormed at him, GG left him apparently for dead with a right cross.

Togo’s chops keyed George to a high pitch. He clipped the Jap; threw him through the ropes with a hammerlock, and pushed Togo off the apron. Upon Togo’s return, GG rushed him to the other side of the ring, lifted him high and attempted to pitch him over the top rope. But the aim was poor. Togo struck the top rope and rebounded, with Gorgeous retaining the hold. GG fell over backward, and Togo pressed him for the fall.

Gorgeous figured he had the “difference” going in. He sported a robe of gold cloth, a replica of one worn by Emperor Hirohito on state occasions. Togo and Hata, his man Friday, gave it the double take. “Cost me seven and a half bills,” said GG.

Etchison Scores Again

Ronnie Etchison, exploding with a terrific tally for the second straight time, ironed out Zorra, the French Tarzan, in 17:04 of the semifinal. Again, the popular Midwesterner employed the colorful giant swing as the coup de grace. Zorra opened along scientific lines, but branched into hair pulling and punching while locking Etchison’s left arm. Ronnie flung him away, but Zorra came on again with the same tactics. Steaming, Etchison decked him with a straight right; leaped across the ring, grasped Zorra’s ankles and swung him about for the fall.

Don Beitelman, the former University of Buffalo mat and gridiron star, made a sensational Buffalo debut as he trimmed Howard Cantonwine in 1:25, the fastest time of the meeting. Don dashed from the corner with the opening bell, connecting with a solid tackle. Three more flying butts set up the veteran for a bear hug. Beitelman pressed Cantonwine’s shoulders to the rug while the fans tore up the seats.

Sandor Kovacs, using the ropes as bowstrings to twang his opponent’s noggin, decisioned Jim (Bull) Wright in a brisk 20 which saw them mix after the final gong. Kovacs tallied with a flip from a wrist lock, and was putting the piledriver on Bull when the bout reached its official termination.

Dona Lewin, with an Indian suntan, returned in the opening 20 and drew with Dick Trout. Trout tallied with a head scissors as they pinwheeled about the premises, but Lewin retaliated with a right that made it appear Dick was out like Trout.

Buffalo Courier-Express, June 30, 1951

Leipler of UB Signs With Bears

Joins Grid Pros

Bob Leipler
… UB Tackle

Leipler of UB
Signs With Bears

Chicago, May 18 – The Chicago Bears football club today announced the signing of Robert Leipler, former University of Buffalo tackle. Leipler is 24 and an Air Force veteran. He weighs 237 pounds. The Bears also announced signing of veteran Paul Stenn, former Villanova tackle, who has been with then the last three seasons.



Buffalo Courier-Express, May 19, 1951

1915-1916 Buffalo Basketball

Posted on: | by Scott Hollander |

Art PowellWith Buffalo fielding a football team for the first time in over ten years in the Fall of 1915, the school administration decided that basketball should also officially return as a varsity sport.

Art Powell, a Buffalo product who starred in basketball, track, baseball and football at Syracuse University in 1903-1907 and served as the head coach of the Indiana Hoosiers basketball for one year (1913), agreed to take over as the head coach of the University of Buffalo basketball team in December of 1915. (see “U.B. Basketball Team Should Be Topnotcher” Buffalo Evening News, 10 December 1915)

Incredibly, Powell was the head coach of both the University of Buffalo AND the University of Rochester varsity basketball teams during the 1915-1916 and 1916-1917 seasons.  At the time, coaching jobs were part-time contract positions and Powell took any assignment he could get.  After the 1917 season, Powell severed his relations with the University of Rochester and devoted his time to the U.B. basketball.  He spent the next 27 years as the head coach of the U.B. basketball program from 1915 to 1943. Powell also coached the U.B. football team from 1916-1921.

Not having a gymnasium anywhere on campus, the team was forced to practice in the gymnasium of the Buffalo Turn Verein, a social/cultural club located at 385-387 Ellicott St., Buffalo. Most home games were played at Orioles Hall, 566 Genesee St, Buffalo, NY. The hall was built in 1914 for the Fraternal Order of Orioles, a social and charitable organization, by prominent Buffalo business leaders of German descent. The building still stands today.

The 1915-1916 season started slowly as U.B. lost four straight games. In mid-February of 1916, Coach Art Powell’s training finally took hold and Buffalo went on a roll winning their last seven games. The University of Buffalo capped the season with a best of three series against Canisius College.  The series was called the “city collegiate basketball championship” and was played at the Elmwood Music Hall. Buffalo won the first game beating Canisius College narrowly by two points 27-25.  U.B. wrapped up the city championship the next game with a convincing 40-23 victory. Buffalo’s first official basketball season was a success. (see “U.B. Basketball Five Makes Good Record for Year” Buffalo Evening News, 8 April 1916)

When his career ended, Art Powell had coach men’s basketball for 38+ seasons at the University of Rochester, University of Indiana, University of Buffalo and Canisius College. He died in Kenmore, NY at the age of 85 in 1969. In 1984, he was inducted into the University at Buffalo Athletics Hall of Fame.

For more information on basketball at the University at Buffalo, visit the UB Sports History Collection website.

1915-1916 Buffalo Basketball Season

Date Home Team Score Visiting Team W-L-T Location
1/14/19161 Carnegie Tech 38 – 22 Buffalo L Pittsburgh, PA
1/15/19162 Duquesne 33 – 19 Buffalo L Pittsburgh, PA
1/17/19163 Geneva College canceled Buffalo Beaver Falls, PA
1/29/19164 Buffalo 29 – 50 Niagara University L Buffalo, NY
2/13/1916 St. Lawrence University 21 – 17 Buffalo L Canton, NY
2/14/1916 Clarkson 18 – 26 Buffalo W Potsdam, NY
2/19/19165 Buffalo 36 – 19 Carnegie Tech W Buffalo, NY
2/26/19166 Buffalo 57 – 17 Hobart W Buffalo, NY
3/4/19167 St. Bonaventure 18 – 51 Buffalo W Olean, NY
3/11/19168 Hobart 16 – 24 Buffalo W Geneva, NY
3/25/19169 Buffalo 27 – 25 Canisius College W Buffalo, NY
4/3/191610 Buffalo 40 – 23 Canisius College W Buffalo, NY

Home Court: Orioles Hall, 566 Genesee St, Buffalo, NY
Arthur Powell

  • 1 – “U.B. Could Not Hold Lead in Second PeriodBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 15 January 1916.
  • 2 – “U.B. Falls to Duquesne Five in Scrappy ContestBuffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 16 January 1916.
  • 3 – “U.B. Did Not Play at Geneva Last NightBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 18 January 1916.
  • 4 – “U. B. Boys Lost to Falls CollegiansBuffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 30 January 1916.
  • 5 – “U.B. Teams Beats Carnegie on CourtBuffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 20 February 1916.
  • 6 – “U.B. Overwhelms Hobart College on Court, 57-17Buffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 27 February 1916.
  • 7 – “St. Bona Five is Easy For U.B. TeamBuffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 5 March 1916.
  • 8 – “U.B. Hands Another Defeat to Hobart FiveBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 13 March 1916.
  • 9 – “Capt. Burns Saves Game For U.B. in Canisius BattleBuffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 26 March 1916.
  • 10 – “Canisius Beaten By U.B. For TitleBuffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 4 April 1916.


U.B. Basketball Team Should Be TopnotcherU.B. Basketball Team Should Be Topnotcher

With High Class Material Local Varsity
Should Develop Splendid Aggregation
Art Powell to Coach.

Manager Tommy Atkins of the University of Buffalo basketball team announced yesterday the appointment of Art Powell, the diminutive former star of Syracuse, as coach of the local seminary’s quintet of basket shooters. Incidentally the schedule for the season was made public and the names of several men, who are fighting; for positions on the local aggregation.

Taking everything, including Art Powell, the candidates for positions on the five and the schedule arranged for the season, into consideration it looks as though the University of Buffalo will get recognition before the year has progressed very far. Powell up to last year was coach of the University of Rochester basketball team. The Dead City teams beat the best of them under his tutelage.

Material Is Promising.

There is daily practice in the Turn Verein hall, which is not far from the university in High street. If the material, which has turned out during the past few days, is any criterion, the local quintet will be an all-star aggregation. Among the candidates are three members of last year’s victorious Canisius team, which nearly completed the season without a defeat. They are Lyons, McMullen and Cotter.

Other candidates are: Burns, University of Pennsylvania; Lavin, Rochester; Cooper, Auburn High school; Bates, State college, Albany; Smith, Cornell freshmen; Drexilius, St. Joseph’s; Siegel, Hutchinson H.S.; McGill, Olean High school; Hayes, Tonawanda; Ryan, Syracuse H. S.; Burns, Albany; Eastman, Hamburg; Lawrence, South Carolina; Kerns, Olean H.S.; Ripley, Syracuse; Merchant, Ravena H. S.; Stowell, Waterman, Patterson, Manchester, Jones, Dobson, Scott.

Buffalo Evening News, December 10, 1915


U.B. Basketball Five Makes Good Record for YearU.B. Basketball Five Makes Good Record for Year

Local Varsity Boys Playing Strong Teams Capture Majority of Games Played.

Winning seven out of 11 games is the record of the University of Buffalo basketball team for the 1915-16 season. The local collegians hold victories over Hobart, Carnegie Tech, St Bonaventure, Clarkson Tech and Canisius College, having defeated Hobart and Canisius on two occasions. Their losses were the Carnegie Tech, Duquesne, Niagara Falls and St. Lawrence.

The local intercollegiate basketball champions brought their season to a most successful close with the victories over Canisius. The team was off to a very weak start, losing its first four games but after a few weeks of practice under the teachings of Art Powell showed the class of the big college teams.

Manager Atkins, Siegel, Lyons, Burns, Manchester and Scott will receive sweaters at the smoker to be held April 20. Arthur C. Flentge was elected manager for the next season with Tex Anderson assistant manager

The following is U. B.’s court record for the 1915-16 season:

U. of B. …………… 22 Carnegie Tech ……………38
U. of B. ……………19 Duquesne ……………33
U. of B. ……………29 Niagara ……………50
U. of B. ……………17 St. Lawrence ……………21
U. of B. ……………26 Clarkson Tech ……………18
U. of B. ……………57 Hobart ……………17
U. of B. ……………51 St. Bonaventure ……………18
U. of B. ……………24 Hobart ……………16
U. of B. ……………36 Carnegie Tech ……………19
U. of B. ……………27 Canisius ……………25
U. of B. ……………40 Canisius ……………23

Buffalo Evening News, April 8, 1916

1914 Buffalo Baseball

Posted on: | by Scott Hollander |
Dan Mellen 1914 U.B. baseball captain

Dan Mellen 1914
U.B. baseball captain

For the first time in many years the University of Buffalo was represented on the baseball diamond in 1914. Athletics at U.B. had a new lease of life with the advent of the new department of arts and science. When a call for candidates was issued early in March, some thirty men responded. Manager Arthur O. Harris organized several games mostly with high school teams. (see “The U. of B. Gets Into Baseball Game” Buffalo Evening News, 24 April 1914)

Dan Mellen was elected captain of the baseball team. Standing over six feet tall and weighing over 200 pounds, Mellen was a gifted baseball catcher.  Mellen graduated from the University of Buffalo with a medical degree in 1918.  Dr. Mellen practiced medicine in Rome, N.Y. for 34 years.

Throughout his life, Dr. Mellen was a loyal baseball fan. He invested thousands of dollars in the Class “C” Canadian-American baseball League through the 10 years he owned the Rome (N.Y.) Colonels baseball team. The decade included the six seasons between 1937, the year Can-Am baseball was introduced in Rome, N.Y. and its war-time suspension after the 1942 campaign, as well as the four post war years from 1946 through 1949. In late 1949, he sold the Rome Colonels franchise to local businessmen.

The University of Buffalo cited Dr. Mellen for outstanding service to humanity in December of 1953. He died in Rochester, N. Y. on September 2, 1957.

For more information on baseball at the University at Buffalo, visit the UB Sports History Collection website.

1914 Buffalo Baseball Season

Date Home Team Score Visiting Team W-L-T Location
4/25/19141 Buffalo 2 – 9 (5 innings) Lafayette High School L Buffalo, NY
4/29/19142 Canisius College ? Buffalo ? Buffalo, NY
4/30/19143 Canisius High School 15 – 3 (5 innings) Buffalo L Buffalo, NY
5/2/19144 Buffalo 5 - 6 Central High School L Buffalo, NY
5/7/19145 Buffalo 6 – 12 Masten Park High School L Buffalo, NY
5/9/19146 Buffalo ? University of Rochester Freshmen ? Buffalo, NY
6/4/19147 Canisius College ? Buffalo ? Buffalo, NY

  • 1 – “Lafayette Trounces U.B.Buffalo Courier, Buffalo, NY, 26 April 1914.
  • 2 – “High Schools Busy in Diamond BattlesBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 28 April 1914.
  • 3 – “Canisius High Wins a Five-Inning Game From U. of B. TeamBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 1 May 1914.
  • 4 – “School BaseballBatavia Times, Batavia, NY, 4 May 1914.
  • 5 – “Masten Parkers Beat U. of B. TeamBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 8 May 1914.
  • 6 – “High School Teams Have Busy DayBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 9 May 1914.
  • 7 – “Scholastic Baseball for This WeekBuffalo Evening News, Buffalo, NY, 2 June 1914.

The U. of B. Gets into Baseball Game


Blue and White Team May
Cut Some Shine on the

For the first time in a number of seasons baseball will come in for more than its share of attention at the University of Buffalo. Although the faculty governing board has not given permission for a varsity team to take the field, the ban has been lifted on inter-class nines and the freshmen of the arts department have come to the front in fine style.

Over a month ago the art students selected Arthur O. Harris as baseball manager and from the schedule that has arranged it looks as if the right man had been placed on the job. Manager Harris has drawn up an outline that will enable his team to face some of the strongest scholastic nines in this part of the state. Owing to the late start but few collegiate outfits will be taken on. the only college argument that is closed calls for the appearance of the U. of B. at Canisius Oval next Wednesday for a crack at the college team. A game is pending with the Freshmen of the University of Rochester for May 9.

The schedule follows:

Saturday, April 25 – Lafayette High at Lafayette field.
Wednesday, April 29 Canisius college at Canisius oval.
Saturday, May 2 – Central high at the Front
Saturday, May 9 – University of Rochester Freshmen at Rochester (pending).
Wednesday, May 13 – Canisius high at the Villa.
Saturday May 16 – Technical high at Urban Liberty park
Wednesday, May 20 – Buffalo Normal school (pending).
Saturday, May 23 – DeVeaux college of Niagara Falls (pending).
Wednesday, May 27 – East Aurora high at East Aurora.
Saturday, May 30 -  (Decoration Day) – Open.

For the past two weeks the candidates for the team have been working out daily at the Front and the team is now in good shape. There are over 30 members in the squad and among them quite a few former scholastic stars. The team is to be selected this afternoon and uniforms are to be given out. A meeting will be held at managers this evening for the purpose of  selecting a captain.

Buffalo Evening News, April 24, 1914

1954 Buffalo Football

Posted on: | by Scott Hollander |

1954 Buffalo FootballThe 1954 edition of the Buffalo Bulls football team was Fritz Febel’s third year as head coach. His teams had struggled the past two years wining only 2 games and losing 12. But Febel was optimistic that things would turn around in 1954. He thought he had the finest group of backs to turn out at UB in a long time.

Heading Febel’s host of versatile backs was the experienced quartet of Ray Kennedy, quarterback, Bill Crowley and Pete Rao, halfbacks, and Bill Kindel, fullback. Two sophomore’s, Chuck Daniels and Dick Doll were also in the mix. Kennedy, Rao, Daniels and Doll were hard and accurate passers so Febel hoped to concentrate on an aerial attack.

Unfortunately, the offense and defense struggled and the season was not a success.  During a four week period, Buffalo was outscored 131 to 7.  Buffalo lost six straight games before finally beating St Lawrence University 13-6 on November 6, 1954 in a mostly empty Civic Stadium in Buffalo.

The highlight of the season was a 20-19 comeback win against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the final game of the season. Buffalo raced 94 yards on seven plays in the closing minutes for the win. Right half-back Paul Snyder whipped the final 33 yards as he straight-armed two rivals. Bill Crowley rail across the extra point for the decisive margin.

On September 1, 1954, U.B. named Clifford C. Furnas as the University of Buffalo’s 9th Chancellor. As mightily as the football Bulls had struggled the past 3 years, it was unknown whether the new Chancellor would support football and athletics in general. But Furnas, a chemical engineer, metallurgist, and aviator researcher, was also a former Olympic athlete participating in the 1920 Olympic Games. Dr. Furnas embraced athletics and helped develop a five year football plan for U.B. (see “UB Decides to Continue Football, Extend Aid to Athletes” Buffalo Courier-Express, November 28, 1954) So although the 1954 team won only two games, it passed it’s ultimate test.  U.B. Football would stay with full support from the administration.  Better days were ahead.

For more information on football at the University at Buffalo, visit the UB Sports History Collection website.

Buffalo player Paul 'Gopher' Synder   Buffalo player Dick Doll is tackled by Alfred Saxons

Your 1954 Edition of the Buffalo Bulls

1954 Buffalo Football Season

Date Home Team Score Visiting Team W-L-T Location
Sat, 9/25/19541 Cortland State 33 - 13 Buffalo L Cortland, NY
Sat, 10/2/19542 Buffalo 6 – 19 Brockport L Buffalo, NY
Sat, 10/9/19543 Hobart 45 – 0 Buffalo L Geneva, NY
Sat, 10/16/19544 Buffalo 0 – 26 Lafayette College L Buffalo,NY
Sat, 10/23/19545 Western Reserve 35 – 7 Buffalo L Cleveland, OH
Sat, 10/30/19546 Buffalo 0 – 25 Alfred University L Buffalo, NY
Sat, 11/6/19547 Buffalo 13 – 6 St. Lawrence University W Buffalo, NY
Sat, 11/13/19548 Buffalo 20 – 52 Brandeis University L Buffalo, NY
Sat, 11/20/19549 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute 19 – 20 Buffalo W Troy, NY


Home: Civic Stadium, Buffalo, NY
Coach: Fritz Febel

  • 1 – “Cortland Wrecks UB’s Grid Opener With 20-6 VictoryBuffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 26 September 1954.
  • 2 – “Brockport Hands UB Second Reverse, 19-6Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 3 October 1954.
  • 3 – “Undefeated Hobart Blanks UB, 45-0; Morton Has 3 TDsBuffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 10 October 1954.
  • 4 – “Lafayette Puts Up Umbrella Defense To Blank UB, 26-0Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 17 October 1954.
  • 5 – “Reserve Bags 34-7 Victory Over BuffaloBuffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 24 October 1954.
  • 6 – “Unbeaten Alfred Hands UB 6th Straight LossBuffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 31 October 1954.
  • 7 – “UB Subdues Larries For 1st Win, 13-6Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 7 November 1954.
  • 8 – “Brandeis Beats UB, 52-2Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 14 November 1954.
  • 9 – “UB Rallies To Defeat RPI, 20-19Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 21 November 1954.

UB Decides to Continue Football, Extend Aid to Athletes

Gradual Return of Games To Rotary Field Planned

Continuation of University of Buffalo football for at least five years; the feasibility of forming an athletic conference of schools within an appropriate geographical area, and the extension of aid to worthy student athletes, among other students, were the highlights of a UB policy and program for athletics announced yesterday by Chancellor C. Furnas. In an unprecedented morning press conference in the living room of his home, Dr. Furnas outlined the aims of his long range program. A gradual return of football games to Rotary Field on the campus, from large but unfilled Civic Stadium, is planned. Rotary Field seats about 2,000, against approximately 36,000 for Civic Stadium.

“It is better to have games on campus than in a great, three quarters empty place,” Dr. Furnas said. “I don’t think that UB will ever be in really big time football, which would fill the stadium regularly. The Ivy League probably will be always out of our league.” “Athletes will be welcome.” Dr. Furnas continued. “We have no objection to having a top team. There are enough boys in Western New York who ordinarily would come here to do the job. We hope to get our fair share. We hope to adjust our schedule upward in a conference.” The 1955 UB football schedule, tentatively drawn up, will be appreciably the same as in 1954.

Scope of Conference

The scope of the projected conference would be approximately from Detroit to the Atlantic Coast, Dr. Furnas said in reply to a question. Among schools with which UB has had “casual conversation” about a conference are Western Reserve, Lafayette, Lehigh, Bucknell and Colgate. “I am not in a position to say how much money we are losing in football,” Dr. Furnas stated. “That depends upon how you keep the books. But certainly we are losing some money at the present time.” A rough guess as to the cost of putting Rotary Field into top shape and increasing its capacity to 6,000 was $100,000. “We will try to use what we have next year and play a game or two there,” Chancellor Furnas remarked. “We are not going into the open market and compete for athletes,” the chancellor told the conference. “We will be more helpful to students who can play football.”

According to the policy statement, “the university will welcome contributions from individuals or organizations for the aid of worthy students who maintain an adequate scholastic standing, and who need financial help. The division and apportionment of the total resources the university has for aiding students will reflect the fundamental intention to give financial help where it is needed most and where it can be used best for the student’s own development, and for the eventual benefit of this society.

Recognize Activities

“In weighing qualifications for scholarships, the Scholarship Committee will be guided by the university’s desire to give full recognition to the value of extracurricular activities, including varsity sports, while avoiding exaggeration of the part athletic competition may desirably play in the student’s life and that of the university.” Chancellor Furnas said that this policy and program have been agreed upon in principle by three university groups: The Athletic Committee, the Scholarship Committee and the Alumni Athletic Council.

Buffalo Courier-Express, November 28, 1954