UC Football Standout Johnny Green Diagnosed with ALS

Tuesday, August 26, 2014 - by B.B. Branton

University of Chattanooga football All-American Johnny Green points to Nov. 8, 1958 and a mighty 14-6 triumph against Tennessee in Knoxville.

“Some thought it was an upset, but as players we knew we could win that game and we did,” said Green earlier this week who was able to take the best shot the Vols had and came out the winner.

“Beating Tennessee was definitely the highlight of my college career.” 

Green was 12 of 20 passing for 117 yards that fall Saturday afternoon in Neyland Stadium, scored the Mocs first touchdown on a 1-yard run 50 seconds before halftime, punted for a 33.1 yard average and had an interception on defense.

But now 50-plus years after his last snap of his pro career (4 years in the old AFL) another opponent – ALS – has taken a shot at the UC/UTC Hall of Famer and the West Point, Miss. native.

Diagnosed in July, Green does his best to carry on with his day-to-day life.

He will go to Vanderbilt Hospital for a checkup Oct. 3, the day before UTC’s Homecoming game with VMI and plans to attend the Chattanooga Quarterback Club luncheon Oct. 6 as several of members of the Mocs 1958 will be special guests with the UT-UTC game set for Oct. 11.

“I look forward to being at the Quarterback Club lunch in October and tell old stories about the Tennessee win,” Green stated.

He will celebrate is 77th birthday Oct. 12, the day after the UTC-UT game.

Johnny Green AFL Career Highlights

* Sun. Oct. 30, 1960 – Buffalo Bills 25, Houston Oilers 24

Green out duels George Blanda

The Oilers (10-4-0) were on their way to the first of two AFL championships, but Johnny Green led the Bills (5-8-1) to a 25-24 upset win.

On the day, Green was 18 of 49 for 339 yards and two touchdowns, while the Oilers hall of fame quarterback George Blanda was 9 of 32 for 124 yards and three touchdown with four interceptions ... two of Blanda’s TD passes were to 1959 Heisman Trophy winner Billy Cannon … The Bills’ Billy Adkins kicked two of his three field goals in the fourth quarter for the win.

* Oct. 22, 1962 – New York Titans 23, San Diego Chargers

Green was 17 of 30 for 313 yards with 2 TDs … beat John Hadl and the Chargers … Green threw two scores to HOFer Don Maynard

* Nov. 22, 1962 – New York Titans 46, Denver Broncos 45

Green threw two, fourth quarter touchdowns as the Bills (5-9) rallied for a 46-45 win over the Broncos (7-7) … on the day, Green was 22 of 46 for 292 yards and 5 TDs … and had one punt for 55 yards

contact B.B. Branton at william.branton@comcast.net

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