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Claude Buddy Young, star halfback for the Dallas Texans, National Professional Football League entry, signs his 1952 contract, as Texans Head Coach Jim Phelan looks on, May 7, 1952, Dallas, Texas.It’s no coincidence that professional football and baseball in Texas both integrated in 1952—and the breakthrough started on the gridiron.Three Black players—Sherman Howard, George Taliaferro, and Claude “Buddy” Young—were on the 1951 roster of the NFL’s financially strapped New York Yanks when Dallas businessmen Giles and Connell Miller bought the franchise in January ’52 and moved it to the Cotton Bowl.The Millers didn’t think twice about bringing Black athletes to Jim Crow Texas, according to author Mike Cobern, whose book about the Dallas Texans’ 1952 season, Wards of the League, is scheduled for release by TCU Press this summer. Similarly, the team’s general manager, Frank Fitzgerald, was quoted in the New York Daily News saying the players were prepared to make the move.Then, just days…

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