Ulysses "Crazy Legs" Curtis proved tough to bring down on and off the field.While the CFL has rightly earned plaudits for giving black players opportunities before other leagues did, it still often wasn't easy for those players north of the border. Stories of players like Cookie Gilchrist, Bernie Custis and Chuck Ealey illustrate that there were still plenty of challenges for black players in Canada, particularly in the early days of the CFL and its predecessor leagues. Still, the experience had positive effects on many, and many of them stayed in Canada after their playing careers ended, making further contributions to the country in other fields. Both sides of that are illustrated in an excellent Toronto Star obituary published Monday on the odyssey of Ulysses "Crazy Legs" Curtis, the famed Toronto Argonauts running back who passed away earlier this month. Curtis played with the Argos from 1950-1954, winning two Grey Cups, and he was the team's first black player. As George Haim writes, Curtis endured challenges thanks to his race, but still gained from his CFL experience and went on to be a renowned educator:Read More »from Remembering Ulysses Curtis, the first black Argonaut, who went on to educate many
Andrew Bucholtz is a Canadian football blogger for Yahoo! Sports.