“Cookie” Gilchrist dies at 75
Tough on the field, tough on injustice
Carlton Chester “Cookie” Gilchrist, one of the hardest charging fullbacks ever in pro football, died of cancer Monday at age 75. Gilchrist was considered one of the first marquee players of the fledgling American Football League, and his punishing running style was often compared with that of Jim Brown’s of the National Football League.
Bills teammate Booker Edgerson said Gilchrist simply ran over opposing players. When others asked why he didn’t sidestep them, he replied: “I want to teach them a lesson. If I run over ’em they won’t come up anymore.”
Gilchrist was born on May 25, 1935, in Brackenridge, Pa., and was named Cookie as a child.
After high school he joined the Canadian Football League, where he starred with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. He led Hamilton to a Grey Cup victory in 1957, and was a six-time division all-star, once as a linebacker. He also played with the Saskatchewan Roughriders and the Toronto Argonauts before joining the Buffalo Bills.
At 6 foot 3 and 250 pounds, he was considered the first great AFL power running back, when he joined the Bills. Gilchrist led the AFL in rushing, with 1,092 yards in 1962, and was the AFL’s first 1,000-yard rusher. The following year he set the pro football single-game rushing record with 243 yards against the New York Jets. He was named All-Pro every season from 1962 to 1965. After three years in Buffalo, he was waived and later joined the Denver Broncos. He finished his career with the Miami Dolphins.
Gilchrist was as tough on racism as he was on opposing players, and he was known as a player who took no guff. It was said that his off-the-field challenges in Canada overshadowed his work on the field. Whatever the disputes were with the public and the team, Gilchrist in 1983 refused induction into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame.
When Gilchrist and other Black players were refused bars and taxicab service in 1965 during the AFL All-Star game in New Orleans, they boycotted. The game was then moved to Houston.
Ernest Davis, born Dec. 14, 1939, became the first African American athlete to win the Heisman Trophy. The running back played at Syracuse University before being drafted by the Washington Redskins. He also was declared an All-American athlete in 1960 and in 1961, the same year he won the most prestigious title for an American collegiate athlete.
The Monday night football game this week was a lesson in life and redemption. I only saw the first half, but that was enough. I got so excited about the performance of Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback, Michael Vick, that I shelved my intended column topic for this week and started over.
VAN NUYS, Calif.—Former Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Milton Bradley was scheduled to be arraigned later this month on 13 misdemeanor charges for allegedly attacking his estranged wife on five occasions between 2011 and 2012.
Bradley, 34, was charged Thursday by the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office with four counts each of spousal battery and criminal threats, two counts each of assault with a deadly weapon and vandalism and one count of dissuading a witness.
His arraignment is scheduled for Jan. 24 at the Van Nuys Courthouse.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—Former Los Angeles Lakers forward Matt Barnes pleaded no contest today to misdemeanor unlicensed driver and resisting arrest charges.
The 32-year-old basketball player—who has signed with the Clippers—was immediately sentenced to two years probation, ordered to complete 30 hours of community service and attend anger management classes for three months, according to the District Attorney's Office.
Hallie Mossett, 16, began her gymnastic career at only 5 years old when she attended a summer camp with a friend from school. It was supposed to be for fun, but Hallie fell in love with gymnastics that summer.
By the fall, she had enrolled at All Olympia Gymnastics Academy and was well on her way to the top.