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Pete Rozelle Speaks Out on NFL Corruption Investigation

Jan. 8, 1963 - NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle (pictured) disclosed today that the Detroit Police Department had observed Detroit Lions players in the company of “known hoodlums.” Rozelle said an investigation of rumors concerning NFL players had been undertaken on the basis of information made available through the cooperation of the Detroit police commissioner, George Edwards. Edwards said today: “Two notorious gamblers, Vito Giacalone and his brother Anthony, continually sought association with some Lions players. Vito is a known gambler; Anthony was convicted of bribing a police officer in an attempt to lay off gambling surveillances and arrests in 1954.” Rozelle stressed that “nothing more than questionable associations have been discovered in these two unrelated investigations of rumors.” In related news, the Detroit News reported today that a defensive tackle, Alex Karras, has been ordered to sell his share of a tavern. Edwin J. Anderson, general manager of the Lions, was quoted as saying: “I don’t like the idea of a player owning a part of a bar where he might run into undesirable people.” In Los Angeles, Karras was visibly upset by the report. He said he would not give up his $45,000 investment in the tavern without a fight. “It’s all I have,” he said.

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