Skip to Content

1950 Buffalo Bulls Football

by Scott Hollander
University at Buffalo Libraries

Team photo

The city of Buffalo’s football landscape changed dramatically during the winter of 1950.

In early January, U.B. coach Frank Clair was told his contract would not be renewed. Then on January 21, 1950, it was announced that Buffalo’s franchise bid to join the newly merged AAFC-NFL was rejected. The city of Buffalo would no longer have a professional football team.

Ad for Niagara at U B at Civic StadiumFinally, on February 7, 1950, Canisius College announced that it was abandoning football due to heavy financial difficulties. By spring, the University of Buffalo had the only football team in town.

On March 11, 1950, Jim Wilson was hired as head football coach at U.B. replacing Frank Clair. Wilson had previously coached the Bulls during the 1932 and 1933 seasons. He also coached at Canisius College from 1939 to 1942 and again from 1948 to 1949. (Wilson was inducted into the Canisius College Sports Hall of Fame in 1980.)

After a win in week one, the team lost its starting star tackle, co-captain Les Molnar, to the Marine Corp when he was drafted on September 26, 1950.

The biggest home game of the season was on October 7th against Niagara University. Niagara’s football team racked up its first post WWII victory over the University of Buffalo, 27 to 13, at Civic Stadium in front of 24,217 spectators.

Although the team finished with a 5-3 record, disappointment was in the air as more was expected from the squad.

Team member Team player Player

1950 Buffalo Bulls Football Season

Date Home Team Score Visiting Team W-L-T Location
9/23/19501 Cortland 0 – 13 Buffalo W Cortland, NY
9/30/19502 Louisville 48 – 19 Buffalo L Louisville, KY
10/7/19503 Buffalo 13 – 27 Niagara L Buffalo, NY
10/14/19504 Buffalo 13 – 0 Alfred University W Buffalo, NY
10/21/19505 Buffalo 52 – 6 Brooklyn College W Buffalo, NY
10/28/19506 Buffalo 33 – 12 Rhode Island W Buffalo, NY
11/11/19507 Buffalo 14 – 22 Ohio University L Buffalo, NY
11/18/19508 RPI 14 – 34 Buffalo W Troy, NY

Home: Buffalo Civic Stadium
Coach: James Wilson

  1. UB Gridders Open With 13-0 Triumph Over CortlandBuffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 24 September 1950.
  2. Powerful Louisville Eleven Turns Back Buffalo, 48-19Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 1 October 1950.
  3. Niagara Clips UB, 27-13, Before 24,217Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 8 October 1950.
  4. UB Gridders Triumph, 13-0, Halt Alfred Winning StreakBuffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 15 October 1950.
  5. Buffalo Soundly Drubs Brooklyn, 52 to 6Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 22 October 1950.
  6. UB Whips Rhode Island State, 33 to 12Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 29 October 1950.
  7. Ohio U Snaps Bulls’ Win Streak, 22 to 14Buffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 12 November 1950.
  8. UB Whales RPI, 34-14, To End YearBuffalo Courier-Express Buffalo, NY, 19 November 1950.