Hardin-Simmons University (Texas), at that time a NCAA-I
football program, recruited Sammy Oates, from Texas
School for the Deaf, to play football in 1958.
He was an immediate starter, a freshman on a seasoned
veteran line up, as the wide receiver He was also
the team’s punter. He led the team with 31 catches
for 402 yards.
The team played against national champions LSU
in the 1958 season and lost 20-6. However, the
team was invited to play in the Sun Bowl,
losing 14-6 to Wyoming.
While Sammy continued playing for three more
seasons, the team’s fortunes went downhill.
He caught 26 passes for 312 yards as a
somphomore. Then as a junior, he was moved to
running back, rushing for 234 yards and then
202 yards as a senior. The following season
he university dropped football!
He was drafted by the Houston Oilers in the
American Football League and was one of the
final cuts before the season started. He
tried out again and was cut again. He then
played for a short time in United Football
League, a minor league outfit before
retiring for good.