CFL legend Hal Patterson passed away on 21 November 2011 at the age of 79.
Prior to arriving in the CFL, Hal played football, baseball and basketball at the University of Kansas. He was the leading rebounder on the 1953 Kansas basketball team that lost the NCAA championship final to Indiana by one point. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles but chose to sign with the Montreal Alouettes where he teamed with QB Sam "The Rifle" Etcheverry.
The two were dynamite together. In 1956 Hal set the record for receiving yards in one game with 338. This record has yet to be broken. In another game that same year, Hal caught a 109 yard touchdown pass. The 1914 receiving yard record he set that season in fourteen games would not be broken until Terry Greer of the Argonauts caught passes for 2003 yards in 1983 in a sixteen game season. Hal had ten 100-yard receiving games in 1956, a record that was not broken until Jamel Richardson of the Alouettes set a new mark with eleven in an eighteen game season in 2010.
Hal went to Grey Cup games in 1954, 1955 and 1956 with the Als but they lost them all to the Eskimos. Hal was traded to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1961 and made it to the 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965 and 1967 Grey Cup games emerging victorious in 1963, 1965 and 1967.
He did of course play both ways and was an excellent defensive back as well. Hal was voted the thirteenth best CFL player of all time in 2006.
This first picture appeared as part of one of the three series of CFL players that Weekend Magazine published in 1957, 1958 and 1959:
Here as well are front and back scans of my 1959 Topps CFL card of Hal Patterson:
Great pose of a great player!