March 7, 1961

George Hower, Jr.’s column in the Santa Rosa Press Democrat included details of his conversation with Tom Louderback over the Tribune’s report of a contract beef. According to Hower, Louderback was “distressed” and said he had “never experienced a cut.”

“It’s surprising,” Louderback said, “because the coaches thought I had a good year. I played every game…which I thought would entitle me to an automatic raise.” He said he missed just five minutes out of a single game when he had the wind knocked out of him. Hower said the current dispute was over “special provisions,” though Louderback wouldn’t give details.

Santa Rosa Press Democrat

March 4, 1961

A Game in Hawaii

Raider general manager Bud Hastings announced that the team would open their 1961 preseason slate against the Houston Oilers in Honolulu. According to Scotty Stirling of the Tribune, the game was actually a gift to the Oilers players from the team’s management for winning the AFL championship and the Raiders were just lucky beneficiaries. The Oilers would open training camp in Hawaii three weeks prior to the game.

According to an Oilers official, the plan came from owner Bud Adams. “It will be a change from the hot, humid camp we had in Texas last year,” said the unnamed official, “and the trip certainly should be enjoyable to the squad.”

The Raiders had yet to schedule their other three preseason games, but said one would likely be played in Candlestick Park, another would take place in Sacramento or Stockton, and the last would probably be against the Chargers in their new San Diego home. The team was still deciding between Santa Cruz and Santa Rosa for their own training camp, with Eddie Erdelatz plumping for Santa Cruz.

Contract News

Wayne Crow, who reportedly had been at odds with management over his contract for 1961, said he thought his situation, which had involved confusion or disagreement over whether offseason payments were part of his 1960 contract, said he thought things had been “straightened out.”

John Dittrich, for his part, said he was “very happy” with his new deal. Stirling reported that Marty Feldman called Dittrich the team’s best guard.

Oakland Tribune
San Mateo Times

March 2, 1961

Ed Schoenfeld of the Tribune reported that progress had been made toward the building of a stadium in Oakland. Per the report, the city of Oakland, Alameda County, and Stadium, Inc., the non-profit tasked with hiring contractors for the project, had engaged in further discussions on the project and signaled that a “preliminary agreement” could be presented to the parties within ten days.

Oakland Tribune

March 1, 1961

Contract Talk

Scotty Stirling, in the Oakland Tribune, reported that there was unhappiness among some of the players over their 1961 contract offers. Wayne Crow, Charlie Hardy, Jack Larscheid, Tom Louderback, and Tony Teresa all voiced some degree of disappointment according to Stirling. Crow and Louderback said they received pay cuts, while Hardy, Larscheid, and Teresa said their raises were too small or non-existent. Tom Flores, on the other hand, said he was “reasonably happy” with his deal and Stirling said the general consensus was that he had received a hefty increase over last year. No specific dollar figures were mentioned anywhere in the story.

Quotes

Crow, explaining that part of his 1960 deal included the withholding of part of his salary to be paid to him during the offseason while he completed his degree at Cal: “The withheld money was not a bonus, but part of my basic salary and it isn’t included in my new contract. That represents a big cut in pay. The withholding setup did not work too well, and I don’t want a similar contract, but that money was a part of my salary so I feel there may be a mistake somewhere. At any rate, I’m not signing until I’ve thrashed the thing out with club officials.”

Hardy: “My contract had a bump in it, all right, but I’m not satisfied with it.”

Larscheid: “I sent (my contract) back, and I’ve since received a letter requesting I drop into the office to discuss the matter. I know, too, that Wayne Hawkins isn’t pleased with the terms in his contract, and he was a starter all of last year.”

Louderback who, like Larscheid, returned his contract unsigned: “They included a big cut in the salary and I’m not signing. When I first got the contract in the mail I thought it was a misprint. I feel I had a good year for the club. I was a starter all season and didn’t get any complaints about my play from the coaches.”

Teresa: “I just gave (my offer) a quick look when I saw the small raise and I threw it in a drawer. I’m thinking it over and I may send it back unsigned.”

Oakland Tribune

February 28, 1961

The Raiders signed another trio of free agents today: halfback Grover Garvin, end John Hardy, and tackle Ray Schaack.

Garvin, 5’10” and 185 pounds, played his college ball with Cal and excelled in the return game. Last season he spent time with the Chargers in training camp before getting cut in August. Although he played both ways with the Bears, the Raiders were probably going to try him out in the secondary.

Hardy, 6’2” and 220 pounds, was Charlie Hardy’s younger brother and followed him at Oakland Tech high school before moving on to Cal Poly. Charlie said his signing “may mean a real fight for my job. I haven’t seen him since 1958, but people in football tell me he is a fine player.”

Schaack, a 240-pounder, played for UC Santa Barbara where he made honorable mention on the United Press Little All-Coast team.

Hayward Daily Review
Oakland Tribune
San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Examiner

February 21, 1961

For the first time in history the Raiders and 49ers squared off on the field of battle. The teams met at the Alameda County Fairgrounds to play basketball in a charity event and the first round went to the NFL, with the Niners winning 65-48. The Raiders were never in it, going down 38-24 at the half. Oakland’s scoring leaders were George Fields with 14 points and Charlie Hardy with 12.

Back in the football world, the team announced the signing of three free agents: halfback Clive Bullian, center Harrison Rece, and tackle Bob Voight. Bullian, 25, at 5’10” and 190 pounds, played his college ball at San Jose State and had training camp experience with several pro teams, most recently with the Dallas Cowboys last year. Fellow Spartan Tony Teresa called him “a fine all-around ball player.”

Rece, 24, at 6’3” and 235 pounds, played at the University of Tampa before transferring to Trinity in Texas. He had also spent some time playing ball during military service.

The 23-year-old Voight, at 6’5” and 265 pounds out of Los Angeles State, had been drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the 18th round after doing his own stint in the service. He was probably the best prospect of the three, having been an excellent athlete in several sports during his collegiate career.

Hayward Daily Review
Oakland Tribune
San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Examiner

 

February 20, 1961

The Raiders, along with their AFL brethren, got some good news today when ABC announced they would be increasing their payments to the teams for the rights to televise their games. Citing strong ratings, especially as the season progressed, the network said the total payout in 1961 would be $2,000,000, a $200,000 increase over 1960. That would boost the Raiders’ take from $185,000 to $215,000.

Oakland Tribune

February 19, 1961

With the basketball game against the 49ers just two days away, Raiders coach Tom Louderback announced the team’s lineup: 6’3” George Fields at center, Wayne Crow and Tom Flores, both 6’1”, at forward, and 6’0” Charlie Hardy and 5’9” Tony Teresa at guard. On the bench would be John Harris, Jack Larscheid, Jetstream Smith, and Ron Warzeka.

Oakland Tribune

February 15, 1961

Today, the Raiders removed the word “acting” from Bud Hastings’s title and made him the team’s full-time general manager. Hired as the assistant GM last June, he had filled the top spot on an interim basis since Chet Soda’s resignation on January 2.

The 43-year-old Hastings said the restructuring of the ownership group had resulted in “a definite clarification of management policies.”

“The owners will determine policy and leave the management of the club in my hands,” he said. “The experience gained during our first year of operation makes us feel we’re geared now to do a much better job.”

The team filled another open spot by hiring former Chicago Cardinals guard Bob Maddock to coach the offensive line, replacing the recently departed Ernie Jorge. Maddock, 40, had played nine games for the Cardinals over two seasons before moving on to coaching stints in the college ranks, the All-America Football Conference, and the Canadian Football League. For the last three seasons he had been employed by the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

Hayward Daily Review
Oakland Tribune
Pro Football Reference
San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Examiner

February 11, 1961

The Raiders lost another draft choice to the competition today. Tony Polychronis, a guard out of Utah, signed with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. He had been chosen by the AFL’s Twin Cities franchise and by the NFL’s Giants as a redshirt last season and his AFL rights had eventually been assigned to the Raiders. In making his choice, he said simply that the Canadian team made the best offer.

Oakland Tribune
San Francisco Chronicle