R.I.P. George Taliaferro Goes Home To Glory At Age 91, First African-American Drafted To NFL

- By Bossip Staff

New York Yanks quarterback George Taliaferro, 1949 Rookie of The Year, runs on the field, carrying a football, circa 1949. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

George Taliaferro Dies At Age 91

George Taliaferro, All-American and star of the undefeated Indiana University Hoosiers of 1945, has passed away at age 91 according to the IndyStar.

Beyond his college accolades, Taliaferro was the first African-American drafted to an NFL team in 1949 by the Chicago Bears in the 13th round.

His college career was also groundbreaking in that Taliaferro was also the first African-American to lead The Big Ten in rushing during the aforementioned 1945 season.

Taliaferro’s athletic feats are to be respected, but let’s be clear. George Taliferro was a G, capital, whether he was wearing shoulder pads or not. Evidence of his gangsta lies in another IndyStar piece written back in 2015. It details his time spend at IU in a time when Black folks weren’t exactly welcomed with open arms.

He had been in school a few years when he showed up at the Princess Theater with ticket money and a screwdriver. It was a Tuesday, when the “colored” section was closed, but Taliaferro was given a ticket and headed for the balcony. Not to sit in it. But to emancipate it.

“In full daylight I removed … two … screws and took that sign down,” Taliaferro says. “And then I sat downstairs and watched a movie.”

Smother George Taliaferro’s name with respect.

Rest in peace, sir.

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