Archive for 'Jim Thorpe'

African-Americans in Pro Football, 1897-1946

Duke Slater was a pioneer for African-Americans in pro football, but he wasn’t alone.  A handful of black athletes competed in pro football before World War II, and today, we take a look back at some of their groundbreaking achievements. African-Americans in Pro Football – Pre-NFL, 1897-1919 The National Football League was founded in 1920, but before that, several professional football teams were formed.  Without the benefit of an organized league, these teams nevertheless found competition with other nearby squads, and many played very respectable schedules. I mentioned in my profile on Frank Holbrook that he played in a semi-pro…

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Hawkeyes Revisited: Duke Slater

I wrote a book with over 220 pages about Duke Slater, so I could talk about him all day.  In terms of contributions to the Hawkeye athletic department, on the field and off, Duke Slater is, in my opinion, the greatest Hawkeye athlete of all time.  There are so many facets and aspects to his contributions to American sports that it seems impossible to cover them all.  But in this edition of Hawkeyes Revisited, I’m going to try to give you a quick overview of one of the most remarkable athletes of the twentieth century. Duke Slater Frederick Wayman Slater was…

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