Some of the University of Wyoming’s Best Have Called Buffalo Home
LARAMIE -- Josh Allen isn't the only former Wyoming Cowboy to punch the time clock every Sunday in Orchard Park.
Of course, there are his two current teammates Jacob Hollister and Tanner Gentry. Rock Spring native John Wendling also spent three seasons in a Buffalo Bills uniform. Who could forget the NFL's "dirtiest player" Conrad Dobler? Eddie Yarbrough, Joe Cummings, Guy Frazier, Corey Mace, and Vic Washington played in Western New York, too.
Pat Rabold was drafted by the franchise in 1989.
But there is one lesser-known former Wyoming football player who called Buffalo home for a dozen seasons, leading the team to four consecutive Super Bowl appearances from 1990-93. Now, you can find his bust in Canton, Ohio, where it will forever be on display at the NFL Hall of Fame.
Tuesday, he also joined Warren Moon and Bud Grant as the only three members of both the NFL and Canadian Football Hall of Fame.
That man is Marv Levy.
No, Levy didn't have a dazzling career in Laramie like all those guys listed above. In fact, he spent just one semester on the high plains before high tailing it to Division III Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
He gave the Des Moines Register his reasoning for leaving back in 2013.
"It was 24 hours a day," Levy told the newspaper. "You'd come back and look at film, do this, do that. There was no time to study."
Levy, a defensive back from Chicago, was recruited by Bernard "Bunny" Oakes at UW. Oakes spent six seasons -- three of which were canceled because of World War II -- at the school, compiling a 6-20 overall record. Before Levy could step on campus, Bowden Wyatt had taken over the reins of the Cowboy football program.
In Levy's one semester, Wyoming went 4-5, securing wins over rivals BYU and Utah State.
Wyatt got things turned around rather quickly though. In fact, if Levy wouldn't have bolted, he could've been on the undefeated 1950 Gator Bowl championship team. That 20-7 victory over Washington & Lee was Wyoming's first bowl appearance in its then 57-year history.
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Levy did OK though.
After lettering in three sports -- football, basketball and track in Iowa -- he was accepted into Harvard Law School. In 1951, Levy started his coaching career at the high school level. Just two years later, he was an assistant at his alma mater, Coe College. Levy got his first head coaching gig in Albuquerque, where he became the youngest coach in Division-I.
In 1958, Levy's Lobos bested Bob Devaney's Cowboys 13-12 in Laramie. The following season, Wyoming outlasted New Mexico, 25-20.
Levy bounced around the college game for a decade before becoming a kicking coach with the Philadelphia Eagles in 1969. From 1973-77, he headed north and led the Montreal Alouettes to a pair of Grey Cup titles.
Then, he got his shot.
Levy became the head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs in 1978. He lasted just five seasons before taking over the head job of the Chicago Blitz of the upstart USFL.
Levy eventually found his final landing spot in 1986 when Ralph Wilson hired him to take over the Bills. There, Levy won 112 games, was named the Coach of the Year three times and is now a member of the team's Wall of Fame.
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