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Ernie Davis
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Football Player
    (December 14, 1939-May 18, 1963)
    Halfback for Syracuse University
    Won Heisman Trophy (1961)
    Inducted into College Football Hall of Fame (1979)
    Died of leukemia at 23
    He died too young.
    He was drafted by Washington but signed a pro contract with the Cleveland Browns.
    He died before playing a single NFL game.
    He barely won the Heisman victory, it was the closest vote ever.
    As a sophomore at Syracuse, he helped the University gain their only national championship.
    He was the first black to win the Heisman Trophy (1961).
    After graduating from Syracuse, he signed with the Cleveland Browns for the then-huge sum of $80,000.
    His mentor was Jim Brown, a fellow Syracuse football star.
    Ernie died of leukemia before he could play in his first professional game.
    Statues, monuments, and schools are named in his honor in his hometown of Elmira, New York.
    The Cleveland Browns retired his #45, despite never playing a game for them.

Credit: Black Chic

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