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Giant Coach Allie Sherman Defends His Players

Dec. 29, 1963 - Allie Sherman leaped immediately to the defense of his star quarterback, Y.A. Tittle, after today’s championship game. The Giant coach also made it clear that in no way did he want injuries to be construed as an excuse for his team’s defeat. The man who coached the Giants to the Eastern title three consecutive seasons said: “Before I say anything else, I want to make it very clear that anything I say about injuries is not to be taken as an alibi. Anyone who puts it that way is misquoting me.” Then Sherman said: “Anyone who has ever said that Y.A. Tittle doesn’t come up to the big game should feel a little ashamed of himself today and realize he doesn’t know much about football or football players. Tittle has been in more big games and has won more big games than anybody because, in the last three years, the Giants have played more big games than anyone. He went out and played the second half in a condition — well, I couldn’t find another quarterback in the league who would go out in that condition.” Tittle suffered severe ligament injuries to his left knee and hobbled off the field in the second quarter. He was hurt either by Larry Morris of the Bears, who hit him on the play, or by the way he fell. After the game, Morris said: “I hit him just as he tossed that pass. His left leg was rigidly set on the ground, and I slammed him just at the knee. I guess that’s what hurt him.” Tittle, on the other hand, felt he hurt himself when “I fell over my own body after that pass. I had slipped going back to pass and just fell badly.” The Bears praised Tittle in their dressing room. Coach George Halas called him “just great,” and linebacker Joe Fortunato said: “Some of us hit Tittle when he threw that touchdown pass to Gifford. He made a tremendous play to get off the pass after we had slammed into him. That’s how good he is.” There were at least two other significant Giant injuries. Tom Scott suffered a broken left forearm, and Bookie Bolin had a concussion. Bolin swallowed his tongue when the concussion happened and needed emergency treatment to prevent suffocation.


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