Monday, November 14, 2011

First '55AA style Penn State customs

Penn State's football program has been much in the news lately, and not in a good way. 

Although I am a part-time resident of a small Western Pennsylvania town about 45 minutes from Beaver Stadium, I have not yet fully embraced the Nittany Lions. 

Over the past few years, my antipathy towards Penn State football had been softening. but since they now play in the Big 10's Leaders Division with Wisconsin, I don't see myself becoming a Penn State fan.

Nevertheless, there's no denying that many former Nittany Lions players went on to become NFL superstars, so over the weekend I created custom cards in the 1955 All-American format for two of their best: Jack Ham and Franco Harris. 

In that regard, I've outstripped Topps, which didn't include any Penn State players in its original 100-card All-American set of 1955.

Ham and Harris were stalwarts of the Pittsburgh Steelers dynasty of the 1970s. While I wasn't following NFL football to any great degree in that era, I have always been somewhat of a Steelers fan. This continues today, as they are my part-time home team. Since they play in the AFC, I'm free to root for them most weeks.

Off the top of my head, I can think of three reasons for liking the Steelers . . . 

1) They had that cool logo on their 1955 Bowman football cards

2) They have a former Ole Miss player (Mike Wallace) as an important part of their offense.

3) They wear the best throwback uniforms in the NFL.

I'm not quite done with Penn State customs yet. A year or two back I bought a copy of the Paterno Legacy book that includes a decent photo of Joe Paterno as the quarterback at Brown University. Someday that will appear on one of my '55 customs.

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