With Universal Pictures’ The Express opening in theaters this week, there will undoubtedly be a few collectors with added interest in the football cards of Ernie Davis.
Davis, a star for Syracuse who was the first African-American to win the Heisman Trophy, was the No. 1 pick in the 1962 draft but never played in the NFL because he was diagnosed with leukemia. He died in May 1963 at age 23 and his team, the Cleveland Browns, retired his jersey not long thereafter.
He has one officially recognized rookie card, which comes in the 1962 Topps set (No. 36, above). It’s a short-printed and condition-sensitive card that books for $150. However, he also has a card in the less widely distributed 1961 Nu-Card set of college stars. And, believe it or not, he has appeared on just a dozen cards total.
Look for more on The Express and Davis’ cards from Beckett soon.
Chris Olds has collected sports cards and memorabilia since 1987. Before coming to Beckett Media, he wrote about the hobby for the Orlando Sentinel on his blog, SportsStuff, and for the San Antonio Express-News and The Tuscaloosa (Ala.) News. Do you have a comment, question or idea? Send e-mail to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.