We return to the airways to round up a busy week here at One Bills Drive. We began the show with a special guest, Bills owner Kim Pegula. Kim called in to go over a variety of topics, including the process in hiring new head coach Rex Ryan.
“Rex almost was a candidate because obviously his name was all around. We didn’t really give much thought to him. We interviewed a lot of people before him. He came in and we were pleasantly surprised at how down to earth he really was in person, his love of the game, and what he said he really wanted to do with life and where he wanted to help us being part of the team. That really resounded very well with Terry and I. It was a little bit of a surprise, I’m going to admit because he was not a candidate we really had on the top of our list.” said Pegula “He really came in and really elevated himself to that top position.”
It’s been three months since taking over ownership of the team and Kim discussed her and Terry’s impressions so far. She also talked about her role on the NFL Foundation Board
At the bottom of the first hour, Bills center Eric Wood joined us to share his thoughts on the Bills new hire. Wood talked about Coach Ryan’s love for the offensive line, his new offensive coordinator Greg Roman, and why he is more excited than he has ever been heading into the 2015 season.
“I’m excited to have Coach Ryan in the building. His enthusiasm, his passion, will be great for us. From a lot of guys I’ve spoken to, we’ll love playing for Rex Ryan and that fires me up.
At the top of the hour, former Bills cornerback Butch Byrd called in to discuss the 50th anniversary of the 1965 AFL All-Star Game, in which he and his African American teammates spearheaded the decision to not play in the All-Star Game and instead return home after they faced racial discrimination in the city of New Orleans. The boycott was also welcomed by many white players who believed a statement needed to be made. Byrd went on to talk about the impact of that day.
“I was really not aware of the significance of the boycott when it was taking place. I was playing in my first All-Star Game and I was excited about it and wanted to play. I was disappointed that we weren’t going to play. After the Houston game (The game was quickly moved to Houston), when we got back to Buffalo, I ran into Cookie (Gilchrist) and later Ernie (Warlick) and they were talking about the significance of the boycott. I started reading the papers about what we did. I believe it was the first time that any sports organization boycotted an event because of racism. That’s when I decided it was a big deal.”
Finally, we were joined by Luke Tasker, the son of former Bills special teams ace Steve Tasker. Tasker, an All-Star wide receiver for the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger Cats, talked about the team’s back-to-back Grey Cup appearances and his thoughts on the rule in the CFL to review defensive pass interference calls. He weighed in with his thoughts on if that same rule could apply to the NFL.
To hear the complete John Murphy Show from Friday, including a visit from Monday Morning Quarterback Club Vice President Paul Peck, who joined us to talk about Monday’s Football Night in Buffalo, click here.
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