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Bernie Custis, modern pro football's first black quarterback, dies at 88

Bernie Custis, modern pro football's first black quarterback, dies at 88

Bernie Custis, regarded as modern professional football's first black quarterback, has died. He was 88.

Custis made pro football history on Aug. 29, 1951, when he became a starter with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, who confirmed his death Thursday.

He starred at quarterback at Syracuse and was selected sixth overall by the Cleveland Browns in the 1951 NFL draft. But Custin, who roomed with future Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis, was told he'd play safety with the club, a move he resisted.

A native of Washington, Custis opted to sign with Hamilton instead, starting every game in his first season in the Interprovincial Rugby Football Union, one...

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