In a galaxy far, far away ... a Jedi master once led a small group
of knights in the galactic battle against the evil Empire. There were
many encounters with the Empire in the early years, but the Jedi troop
always emerged victorious. The force multiplied in the young knights
with each new victory. One maverick knight, Annakin Skywalker, reveled
in the ways of the force, and he excelled faster than the rest. Unfortunately,
consumed by his selfish ambition, he was drawn to the dark side. Annakin,
now known as Darth Vader, embraced the Empire and personally led new
attacks against his Jedi mentor. This continuous struggle between
mentor and pupil defined the star wars of good vs. evil for all eternity.
Nevertheless, the Jedi master and his faithful charges were always
protected by the power of the force.
or fiction? While the Star Wars saga exists in the imagination,
another good vs. evil clash was contested across AFL/NFL gridirons.
Here life imitated fiction. The Chargers' franchise began in 1960
under the direction of Head Coach Sid Gillman - the original Jedi
master. Led by Coach Gillman, the Chargers won consecutive AFL Western
Division titles in 1960 and 1961. Charger power was born, and life
in the AFL was good.
prospered from the Chargers' success, especially the four young
assistant coaches who learned directly from the master. Coach Gillman's
staff included Joe Madro, Jack Faulkner, Chuck Noll and ... Al Davis.
Although only 33, Davis distinguished himself as a football prodigy
with thirteen brilliant years of coaching and football administration
experience behind him.
attended Wittenburg College in Springfield, Ohio and Syracuse, playing
football, basketball and baseball. He began his football coaching
career at Adelphi College in Garden City, Long Island, in 1950-51.
He was head coach at the Ft. Belvoir, Virginia Army team in 1952-53.
He served on the staff of the Baltimore Colts, at The Citadel and
at the University of Southern California (1957-59). Finally, he
excelled as a Charger assistant to Coach Gillman in 1960-62. Considered
one of the top recruiters of football talent in the nation, Davis
signed many key players for the Chargers, including Ernie Ladd,
Lance Alworth, Walt Sweeney, Earl Faison and Paul Lowe. Truly, the
force of Charger power was with Al Davis.
Davis' rise in the Charger dynasty was terminated on January 19,
1963 when he became General Manager/ Head Coach of the Oakland Raiders
- the evil Empire!
The Raiders continues with ... The Empire