March 23, 1961

In today’s Tribune Ray Haywood’s column was all about Raider guard Don Manoukian’s other job: pro wrestler on the Texas circuit. Manoukian said the promoters tried to make him a hero at first, but inevitably the hirsute 240-pound lineman had no choice but to play the villain. Fortunately, that fit well with his day job.

“I’m spreading the the prestige and fear of the mighty Raiders via my body slams and TV appearances,” he said. “When I first got here I told everybody on TV and radio that the Raiders were Texas state champs because we beat both Dallas and Houston on our road trips. Man, that irked the natives to no end. Then, when I won the Texas heavyweight championship I wore the trophy belt upside down to remind the people what I had done to their state. The more unpopular I got, the bigger the crowds.”

Oakland Tribune

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