Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving! Here's an Oddball Set...

I have my brother and mother in town this week for Thanksgiving, which has meant very little time for me to catch up on the cool PWE from Jeff, the massive Brewers mailing from Cynical Buddha, or the gobs of great & cheap cards I picked up at my local show on Sunday.  For that matter, I also haven't had the chance to scan much of anything from the box of random stuff that my brother brought down for me. It even included an uncut sheet of cards from the 1984 Nestle set!

When I did have a few minutes, though, I scanned most of the things that I wanted to share.  In the spirit of sharing and Thanksgiving, here's a great oddball set.

Nobis is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, and for good reason.  He enjoyed an incredible three years with the Texas Longhorns. He was a two-time All-American, a three-time all-Southwest Conference player (in the years before freshman eligibility), and was a starter for Darrell Royal as both a linebacker and as a guard.  In those positions, he finished seventh in the Heisman Trophy voting.

Here in Atlanta, Tommy Nobis is also a legend.  Nobis was the first player ever drafted by the Atlanta Falcons for their debut season in 1966 as the first pick overall.  In a weird reflection of the times, the 1966 Draft took place on November 27, 1965. He was also the first selection of the Houston Oilers of the AFL, leading astronaut Frank Borman to say from Gemini 7 that his message to Earth was to "tell Nobis to sign with Houston." He capped his rookie year by being named the NFL Rookie of the Year and to the Pro Bowl. He still holds the record for most NFL tackles in a season with 294 combined tackles. His number was retired by the Falcons.

After his career ended, he stayed in Atlanta and founded the Tommy Nobis Center -- a center for youths and adults with disabilities to receive job training and employment services.  

Salient to my discussion is that Nobis was also an entrepreneur. Back in 1978 and according to Frank Moiger (the person I bought this from), Nobis help organize the 1st Annual Atlanta Sports Collectors Sports Card Convention. As part of that convention, a set of 24 cards was printed for the guys who appeared and signed autographs.  That included Nobis and these guys too:

In addition to these Braves, also appearing were Gene Oliver, Fred Haney, Denny LeMaster, Ken Johnson (who just passed away this week and is still the only pitcher to lose a game in which he pitched a 9-inning no-hitter), Lee Maye, Denis Menke, Felix Millan, Felipe Alou, Frank Bolling, Tony Cloninger, Ty Cline, Johnny Sain, Pat Jarvis, and two Yankees -- Johnny Mize and Bob Turley.

I knew of this set's existence when I went about putting my Joe Adcock Checklist together. I paid $20 for this set, which is about right as best I can tell from eBay when you figure in the willingness to pay a little bit more to help support people you know who organize baseball card shows.  

Granted, Hall's Nostalgia -- a name I don't think I've heard since reading Baseball Digest in the 1970s and 1980s -- is trying to get $19.99 plus $3.99 shipping for the Nobis Card alone (and it looks like their eBay photo was taken in an asphalt parking lot), but there is a complete set available for around $15 if you're interested.

Finally, as today is a day to give thanks, I want to thank every one of you who reads my blog, who has sent me cards, who has received cards from me, or even who are still waiting to get cards from me. Without you guys and gals, I probably would have gone through my cards the first time around and decided not to fool with them. Instead, I now have a great way to spend my time with people who are as passionate (or more passionate) about a great hobby as I am.

Thank you one and all, and have a great Thanksgiving!


  1. That is a very neat looking set.

    1. I agree, Jon -- I love the 1959 Topps design!

  2. Man I might have to spring for that Set instead of blowing money on black Friday sales. Awesome post man

    1. You should! It's not a tough set to find, but it is also not a common set to run across either.

  3. 70's oddball set for $15... sounds like a pretty sweet deal. Happy Thanksgiving!