Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Rams rookie sensation Bucky Pope is custom card subject in 1965P style

For a couple of years now I've had in my photo files some images from the Topps vault that were recommended to me as good candidates for some 1960s style custom football cards.

I decided to work up a few of them, as much for the challenge of working in new formats as to create football cards of guys that never made the card cut with Topps and/or Philadelphia back in the day. All these players had interesting NFL careers, though none were stars.

First up is Frank "Bucky Pope," who played 1964 and 1966-67  with the L.A. Rams and in 1968 for the Packers.

Pope had a sensational rookie year in 1964 after being drafted in the 8th round (#105 overall) by the L.A. Rams out of tiny Catawba college, an NAIA school in North Carolina.

Tall (6'5"), fast and sure-handed, Pope became the Rams' long-ball threat. His 10 receiving touchdowns were two more than the rest of the team combined and tied for first in the NFL that season.

Pope's 31.4 yards per catch average in '64 were best in the league and remain the second-best all time in the NFL. His 786 receiving yards were team-best.

Following the season he went to camp with the Army reserve, being released in time for the opening of the 1965 exhibition season. He immediately injured his knee and his football career was over.

There are several good accounts of Pope's career on the internet; I recommend you start with this one: Bucky Pope .

As I mentioned, Pope never had a mainstream football card. I made my custom in the format of 1965 Philadelphia.

Keep following the blog for a couple of more football cards that never were.

You can order this card. Unless otherwise noted, all of my custom cards are available to collectors for $9.95 each, postpaid. Complete checklists of all my custom baseball, football and non-sports custom cards were published on this blog Dec. 10 (football), July 6 (non-sports) and Sept. 19 (baseball). To order, email me at for directions on paying via check/money order, or to my PayPal account.


  1. I saw Pope play with the Rams and loved his nickname, the kind you never find anymore. Being from Catawba College and a sure-handed receiver, he was known as the "Catawba Claw."

  2. Glad to see you are back in action--looking forward to more of your fantastic custom football cards

  3. There is a YouTube video of a Packers pre-season game (either 1968 or 9) and Pope plays for Green Bay there.


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