The Express: The Ernie Davis Story

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Random House Publishing Group, Sep 2, 2008 - Sports & Recreation - 210 pages
“He could do it all, beat every opponent . . . except one.”
–plaque honoring Ernie Davis, in the lobby of Elmira Free Academy

Ernie Davis was an All-American on the gridiron, and a man of integrity off the field. A multi-sport high school star in Elmira, New York, Davis went on to Syracuse University, where as a sophomore he led his team to an undefeated season and a national championship in 1959, and earned his nickname, the Elmira Express. Two seasons later, Davis had broken the legendary Jim Brown’s rushing records, and became the first black athlete to be awarded the Heisman Trophy.

The number one pick in the 1962 NFL draft, Davis signed a contract with the Cleveland Browns and appeared to be headed for professional stardom. But Davis never ended up playing in the NFL: He was diagnosed with leukemia during the summer before his rookie season and succumbed to the disease less than a year later. In battling his illness, Davis showed great dignity and courage, inspired the nation, and moved President John F. Kennedy to eulogize him as “ an outstanding man of great character.”

An enduring story of a true scholar-athlete, The Express is a touching, impeccably researched, deeply personal portrait of Ernie Davis, and a vivid look at sport in America at the dawn of the Civil Rights era.

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User Review  - bramily4 -

I ordered The Express paperback as a Christmas gift. I was so surprised to get it in time! I loved the movie based on the true life of Ernie Davis so I knew I would love the book as well. Read full review

The Express

User Review  - simlin51 -

This is an inspirational sports story about a young black mans love for football and struggles he endures in the 50s and 60s. Ernie Davis overcomes countless obstacles to become the first black ... Read full review


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Number One
0urneys End
An Enduring Memoryl

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About the author (2008)

Robert C. Gallagher is an alumnus of Syracuse University and a freelance sportswriter. Gallagher is the author of The Express: The Ernie Davis Story, which was turned into a major motion picture. His articles have appeared in Baseball Digest, the Washington Post, the Redskins Report, and other publications. He works for the Fairfax County Public Library in Virginia.

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