Los Angeles Wildcats - After The First AFL

After The First AFL

Two days after the end of the 1926 season (and of the AFL), the Wildcats and the New York Yankees started a series of exhibition games as the two Pyle-owned teams went on a barnstorming tour of the American South and West. The two teams competed in Atlanta (a 7-7 draw), Birmingham, Alabama (a 14-3 Yankees win), Beaumont, Texas (a 34-0 Wildcats win), and San Antonio (a 20-14 Yankees win) before traveling to California for games against the independent Hollywood Generals (whom the Wildcats defeated, 26-7, in Wrigley Field of Los Angeles) and the NFL’s traveling team, the Los Angeles Buccaneers (the Wildcats won, 17-0, in a game played in San Francisco).

With the dissolution of the American Football League (Pyle’s Yankees were preparing to join the NFL under an arrangement with New York Giants owner Tim Mara, who acquired the assets of the defunct Brooklyn Horsemen), the Wildcats ceased to exist after the game in San Francisco. Wildcat Wilson joined the Providence Steam Roller for the 1927 NFL season. Wilson was not the only 1926 Wildcat to join a NFL roster for the 1927 season:

Mal Bross – Green Bay Packers
Ted Bucklin – Chicago Cardinals
Walden Erickson – Pottsville Maroons
Ray Flaherty - New York Yankees
Ted Illman – Chicago Cardinals
Jim Lawson – New York Yankees
Ray Stephens – New York Yankees
John Vesser – Chicago Cardinals

Flaherty continued to play until 1935 (taking 1930 off to teach college football), then became head coach of the Washington Redskins in 1937. He became a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1976.

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