by Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page

We are counting from 99 to 0 to determine who’s the best Buffalo athlete to wear each number.  It’s Buffalo Sports By The Numbers here on Buffalo Sports Page.

We’ll have a new number and athlete every day this summer.  Each story also includes reaction from the Buffalo Sports Page staff, and a way to catch up on numbers you’ve missed.

After every 10 numbers, a Sylvester & Peck On Sports podcast will feature Budd Bailey and the guys reacting to the selection.


Henry Nowak, Canisius. Nowak graduated as the Golden Griffins’ all-time leading scorer and rebounder. Nowak was drafted by the NBA’s St. Louis Hawks, but he went to law school instead. Nowak ended up serving 18 years in Congress. Others: Fred Crawford, St. Bonaventure; Eugene Marve, Bills; Dale Schuelter, Braves.  

Bob Gaughan’s Numerical Musings:  Every Buffalo fan should know that Canisius in 1956 beat the number one team in the country NC State in the first round of the NCAA tournament.   NC state coach Everett Case said before the game : “Canisius I don’t even know how to spell it.” Hank Nowak led the team with 29 points in a thrilling triple overtime 79-78 win. The front page of the paper the next day had the headline: “Hey Everett It’s spelled C-A-N-I-S-I-U-S.”  Case by the way would go on to start the tradition of cutting down the nets when you win a tournament.

Missed any of the previous numbers from 99 to 55?  Visit the Buffalo Sports By The Numbers section on the home page.

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey has been involved in almost every aspect of the local sports scene for the last 40 years. He worked for WEBR Radio, the Buffalo Sabres' public relations department and The Buffalo News during that time. In that time he covered virtually every aspect of the area's sports world, from high schools to the Bills and Sabres and everything in between. Along the way, Budd served as a play-by-play announcer for the Bisons, an analyst for the Stallions, and a talk-show host. He won the National Lacrosse League's Tom Borrelli Award as the media personality of the year in 2011, and was a finalist for that same award in 2017. Budd's seventh and eighth books, one on the Transcontinental Railroad and the other about Ichiro Suzuki, are scheduled to be released in the fall.

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