October 17, 1960

A day after the team’s biggest win, the owners continued to be concerned by anemic attendance figures. Yesterday’s game drew 11,500, consistent with the numbers for previous home games, but still disappointing. Some members of the ownership group thought the $4.50 top price was simply too high.

“It’s too late to do anything about it this season,” said Don Blessing, “but next year I think we’ll quite definitely have to drop our prices. It’s obvious that people aren’t ready to pay the same price as for the 49ers,” and thought $3.00 to be about right.

Fellow owner Ed McGah wanted to go even lower. “I’d like to see the price cut in half to $2.25,” he said. “We expected to lose this year and maybe next year, but not this much.”

Chet Soda cautioned his colleagues not to be so hasty. “The team is starting to roll and that is our primary concern right now,” he said. “We have two deals now for fans to buy tickets at a reduced price and Sunday only 71 people took advantage of them. I think the attendance will pick up as the team catches on with people. We have an owner’s meeting scheduled tomorrow and I’m sure we’ll discuss the matter further, along with other subjects.” He also said he and his fellow owners were “real proud of the team and starting to smell roses.”

Hayward Daily Review
Oakland Tribune
San Mateo Times

October 16, 1960

Final statistics

 

The Patriots hadn’t lost a game on the road and the Raiders hadn’t won at home, but that was all out the window at the end. It was probably the Raiders’ best game to date, but they were also lucky to get away with a 27-14 win over the Patriots on an unseasonably warm afternoon at Kezar Stadium.

Almost immediately, things began to go Oakland’s way. On the second play from scrimmage at the Raider 13, Jack Larscheid, starting in place of Tony Teresa, took a pitch from Tom Flores and took it 87 yards for a score. And if that weren’t a rousing enough start, Ron Burton fumbled on Boston’s first offensive play and Carmen Cavalli recovered for Oakland at the Patriot 31. Flores couldn’t move his team much closer and the score stayed 7-0 when Larry Barnes’s 40-yard field goal attempt came up short.

Most of the rest of the quarter was a punting duel. The Patriots did get close enough to give Gino Cappelletti a chance to kick one from 47 yards out, but his attempt was short, too. Frustrated with Flores’s inability to move his team after the first drive, Eddie Erdelatz put in Babe Parilli late in the quarter, but on his second play Bob Soltis picked him off and returned it back to the Raider 9. Three plays later, Alan Miller took it in to score from the 2, but Riley Morris, in the game despite numerous reports saying he wouldn’t play, blocked Cappelletti’s extra point attempt and the Raiders kept the lead. Read more “October 16, 1960”

October 15, 1960

Eddie Erdelatz decided to give his players the day off before tomorrow’s game against the Patriots. “Our Saturday work is limited to 20 minutes and experience has taught us the drill isn’t necessary,” he said. “When a team comes off the road, say, on a Friday before the game, then a Saturday workout is in order. But we have been home all week and I think we’re better off without the Saturday practice.”

The Raiders coach confirmed that linebacker Riley Morris would miss the game. “Riley was kneed in the back when he ran with a kickoff return against Dallas,” Erdelatz explained, “and he will have to sit this one out.” Tom Louderback would slide over to Morris’ right linebacker spot and Larry Barnes would get the start at Louderback’s middle linebacker position. On offense, halfback Tony Teresa would see only spot action because of his back woes and Jack Larscheid would start the game in his stead.

Having seen poor attendance at Kezar Stadium since their first game in July, the Raider front office was anticipating improved numbers starting tomorrow. “We hope for a crowd of 15,000,” said general manger and co-owner Chet Soda, “but a lot depends on the weather.” Their best attendance total to date was the 12,703 figure for their regular season opener against Houston.

In public relations news, the team announced that Erdelatz and his staff would provide a pair of football clinics for local area kids in November. They would happen on the 19th and the 25st and were to take place at Triangle Field, adjacent to Kezar. The sessions were part of a project sponsored by former major league baseball players Mike Sabena and Lefty O’Doul in conjunction with the San Francisco Parks and Recreation Board.

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Oakland Tribune
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October 14, 1960

The coaches eased up on the practice intensity today to help the players get rested up for the Patriots two days from today, but the staff still continued to prepare for Boston’s passing attack, featuring quarterback Butch Songin.

“Good pass defense is the key to success in pro football,” said secondary coach Ed Cody, “because most clubs are so good at stopping running plays, a team is force to throw the ball more than 50 percent of the time. If you can stop the other team’s air game, you have a better than even chance for victory.”

In other news, the team announced a special ticket deal for members of the armed forces in uniform. Any such attendees would be offered $2.00 seats in a section on the northwest side of Kezar Stadium.

Oakland Tribune

October 13, 1960

The team officially designated injured linebacker Riley Morris as “doubtful” for Sunday’s game against the Patriots saying he was still recovering from taking a knee in the back and wasn’t yet ready to play.

In sportswriter Ray Haywood’s column in the Oakland Tribune, space was provided for his colleague Scotty Stirling’s observations during his three-week road trip with the team.

Stirling was impressed by the players’ response to the team’s “inevitable mistakes in travel scheduling, accommodations, practice fields, etc.,” and said, “Their attitude is a compliment to Eddie Erdelatz. They are so devoted to the coach that they laugh off inconveniences which would cause most teams to call a grievance committee meeting.”

Among the tales he returned with was news that 5’8″ guard Don Manoukian was the humorist on the team, that Erdelatz rates trainer George Anderson as the best he’s ever worked with, that tackle Paul Oglesby’s nickname is “Cheyenne” based on a television character and is incidentally “the handsomest player in the league,” that Eddie Macon’s nickname is “Old Folks”, which is perhaps appropriate given that he is the only player on the team who has seen his 30th birthday, and that assistant coach Tommy Kalmanir is a poker player, but solo only. “Playing alone is the best way to break even,” was his explanation.

Oakland Tribune
San Mateo Times

October 12, 1960

The Raiders continued to prepare for the Patriots on Sunday while sick bay continued to be well-attended. Nyle McFarlane, despite suffering a dislocated shoulder against the Texans, was expected to be ready to go, as were Charlie Hardy and Gene Prebola, both victims of muscle pulls. Less certain was the status of Tony Teresa, who was still healing from torn back cartilage, and Riley Morris, recuperating from a bruised back.

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Oakland Tribune
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October 11, 1960

General manager Chet Soda announced the resignation, “for personal reasons,” of public relations director Gene Perry today. No further explanation was given. Taking his place was sportswriter Jack Gallagher, who had been a columnist for the Oakland Tribune for better than a decade. The change would happen in a week or so.

The team also provided additional news about Riley Morris. He was reportedly recuperating nicely after a scare aboard the team’s plane on the return from Dallas. He had to be given oxygen when he reacted badly to shots given to him following a back injury suffered during the game and was taken to Merritt Hospital upon touchdown. His status for the Patriots game was still unknown.

Having been relatively quiet on the topic of the Raider quarterback controversy up to now, Eddie Erdelatz decided to speak at greater length today. He called Tom Flores and Babe Parilli “the best one-two quarterback combination in football” and said he wouldn’t trade them for anyone in any league.

“Singly, of course, there are quarterbacks just as good,” he said, “but as a tandem, you can’t find a more effective pair. In Houston, three weeks ago, we started Babe because Tommy had been having trouble regaining his form after suffering a shoulder injury. Babe had trouble making the club go, so we went with Tommy in the second half. Well, all Tommy did was direct a terrific touchdown march that gave us a 14-13 victory.

“Against Denver, the quarterbacks worked on a par. Last Sunday, in Dallas, it was Flores having first half troubles so Babe got the call in the final two periods. We scored three times, once on a well-directed drive, and pulled it out. That’s how it’s been all season. One week one guy looks great and the next week the other one comes through. I honestly can’t choose between them and I’m glad I don’t have to.

“As far as I’m concerned, they’re both great and I’m real glad they’re on our side. As a pair, they give a team a great advantage when it comes to moving that ball.”

Hayward Daily Review
Oakland Tribune

October 10, 1960

After returning home late last night the team was given the day off from practice, but at least some of the team were on hand to help kick off Raider Week in San Francisco. Mayor George Christopher hosted the ceremony starting at noon in Union Square. Before a crowd of around 500 fans, Christopher presented keys to the city to Tom Flores and Bob Dougherty, the team’s co-captains, saying his city was “where the atmosphere and the weather make it the best city in the country for football,” and added that he was “looking forward to the day the Raiders and the 49ers are playing the football world series in San Francisco.”

Team general manager Chet Soda followed, saying, “On behalf of the Raiders I want to thank all the dignitaries and people of San Francisco responsible for Raider Week and for having us here today.”

Head coach Eddie Erdelatz added his thanks, then introduced his coaching staff and asked for a cheer for line coach Ernie Jorge, who was still recuperating from a recent heart attack.

Afterward, press, dignitaries, and team members gathered for lunch at the Press and Union League Club.

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Oakland Tribune
San Mateo Times

October 9, 1960

It started out slowly enough but got wild in the second half. The Texans got on the board first with a long drive in the second period, but Oakland head coach Eddie Erdelatz gave his team an ass-chewing at halftime that spurred them on to a 20-19 nail-biting victory over the Texans in Dallas.

Read more “October 9, 1960”

October 8, 1960

The team planned only a light workout today with the coaching staff wanting to give the players some rest before tomorrow’s game, especially in light of all the bruises and bumps many key players had been working through. Some of these injuries had previously been announced by the team, such as Tony Teresa with his back problems and Jim Otto with chest and knee issues. But also among the walking wounded with unspecified aches and pains were fullback Billy Lott, middle linebacker Tom Louderback, defensive back Eddie Macon, tight end Gene Prebola, and defensive tackle Ron Warzeka. According to trainer George Anderson, all were expected to be in more or less game shape tomorrow, except for Teresa. The halfback’s status was still uncertain, and if he did play, the team expected to use him sparingly and that he would be of reduced effectiveness.

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Oakland Tribune
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