Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Luck of the Irish

My card purchasing has dropped pretty dramatically over the last couple of months, so much so, that since the last show I attended at the end of May, I have bought maybe five cards total. I attribute this recent decline simply due to being burned out on cards, plain and simple.

Card burnouts are not uncommon for me, but this kind of decline in buying, has been a little more pronounced than usual. Thankfully for me though, I have many other collecting interests, so I don't have to do anything too crazy/responsible, you know... like save my money. That would be just sheer lunacy!

This drop-off in newer acquisitions is also why all of my more recent posts have featured cards from last year, and even as far back as late 2015, that have been sitting in folders collecting digital dust. So with that being said, today's card is a bit of a treat, in that it's actually new -- or at least, new to me.

I may not be buying much, but I still look around, just to make sure I don't miss any great deals. Today's card comes courtesy of a recent auction on Sportlots, I just couldn't pass up a cheap opportunity to add a card to my small collection of autographs featuring Heisman Trophy winners.

2012 Fleer Retro 1961 parallel autograph
Johnny Lattner capped off his senior season at Notre Dame by winning the Heisman in 1953, which paired nicely with the Maxwell Award that he also won that year and the year prior. Johnny was never great at one particular position, he was just really good at multiple positions -- playing on both sides of the ball as a halfback and defensive back. He was also used as a kick returner and was an accomplished punter as well.

Drafted by the Steeler's with the 7th overall pick in 1954, he would play one season with the team,    before joining the Air Force for the next two years. It was there that some point (I couldn't find the date), that during an exhibition football game, Mr. Lattner suffered a knee injury of such severity, that he was never able to play football again.

Racking up over 1,000 all-purpose yards and being named to the 1954 Pro Bowl, his one and only professional season with Pittsburgh was considered a success, there is no way to know just how well he would have fared, had the opportunity at a longer career not been taken from him so soon.

Before getting this card, I wasn't familiar with the 2012 Fleer Retro football set in the least, and even after reading about it, I can honestly say that I'm still not. It seems like a very confusing set. Among other things, it looks like they had four different insert sets featuring players on the old Fleer designs from 1960-63, with each of those sets then having autograph parallels. The odds of pulling these inserts varies by year. The odds of pulling a card from the '61 set were 1:20 packs, unfortunately I couldn't find any stated odds of pulling one of the autograph parallels, so I have no idea how difficult this particular card was to get. I do know however, that from searching around some, the autograph parallels on the old Fleer designs don't seem to be very common, in fact one could almost say that they are somewhat scarce in the wild. Which is par for the course, I find something I like, and then I can't find anymore (at least reasonably priced). And after doing some research, I think getting the above card for $7.50 turned out to be a pretty good deal. Had it been listed on eBay instead of Sportlots, I suspect it would have gone for much more.

Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.


  1. I remember the early 60's Fleer designs. Pretty plain. But this set looks cool

    1. The plainness of those old Fleer sets is part of the appeal though.

  2. Great looking card! Lattner's signature is equally as beautiful.