2021 Spotlight Team

2021 Spotlight Team

1958 University of Buffalo Bulls Football Team

The 1958 University at Buffalo football team will be remembered as much for its dominance on the football field as for its unity off it. Following an 8-1 regular season, the Bulls were honored on “The Ed Sullivan Show” for winning the Lambert Cup — a trophy given to the best small school program in the East. The honor came with an invitation to play Florida State in the Tangerine Bowl — UB’s first bowl invitation. However, in a time of civil rights unrest, the invitation came with one condition: that Buffalo’s two Black players, Willie Evans and Mike Wilson, not attend the game. Without hesitation, the team unanimously voted not to play the game, refusing to leave their teammates behind. The 1958 team’s unified stance against racism was a great and principled action, inspiring to others, and dignified themselves, the university, and all of Buffalo in the eyes of the entire nation.

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