Tragedy struck the 1959 Covington Buccaneers as they lost teammate Dave Murray on September 5th, but proceeded to honor their teammate with a memorable season.

1959 Covington Buccaneers: First Row, left top right: Dwaine Shawver, John Thompson, Mike Hudson, Larry Wise, Paul Althoff, John Holsinger, Larry McKenzie, Kay Hunt. Second Row, left to right: Mr. Deeter, Mr. Barnes, Jim Cassel, Tom Iddings, Ronnie Ruhl, Fred Davis, Tom Carder, George Yingst, Doug Murray, Jim Ruhl, Mr. Irvin, Mr. Dunn. Third Row, left to right: Dan Cotrell, Phil Iddings, Sam Bashore, Bob Livingston, Bob Hartley, Mike Cotrell, Jim Sampson, Larry Warner, Steve Wells, Gordon McMaken, Mike Hart.
Blair Irvin

Brisk breezes are blowing and the stands are crowded with excited fans, ready to cheer the Buccs on to victory. As the Buccs come onto the field, the air is filled with excitement, and the confidence of the team is evident as they prepare to meet their opponents. The team warms up and gets ready for action, then everyone stands at attention for the National Anthem. The Buccs form a huddle and have a moment of silence before they are ready to play.

Twenty-six players began the season with the Buccs but, because of injuries, they had only 20 to 22 eligible. They didn’t let that stop them! They practiced every evening after school until 5:15. Who said, “Practice makes perfect”? Well, he certainly was right, because we had the next best thing to a perfect team. The Buccs were defeated just once, and they set a new offensive record of 386 points. They also broke their defensive record with only 42 points scored against them.

Some of the games that caused the Buccs the most worry were: Versailles, Dayton Kiser, and West Milton. Covington met Versailles on their field and won 40 to 14. It was the first time in five years the Buccs had beaten Versailles. Later, Covington met Dayton Kiser at Smith Field and shut them out 32 to 0. When it came to West Milton, the Buccs had their work cut out for them. Covington met West Milton at Memorial Stadium and lost 6 to 14. This was the last game of the season for the Buccs, and the only one they lost.

Seniors on the starting line-up were: Jim Sampson, Captain, left tackle; Mike Cotrell, right guard; Bob Livingston, right tackle; Fred Davis, quarterback; Phil Iddings, left halfback; Tom Carder, right halfback. Reserve seniors were: Jim Cassel, center; Paul Althoff, guard; and Ronnie Ruhl, end.

Community members have a good reason to be proud of their Covington Buccaneers as this was an exceptionally good year for them. The co-operation of the boys and the capable coaching of Mr. Irvin, head coach, and his assistants Mr. Dunn and Mr. Banes can be credited for the success of the team.

(Content obtained from the 1960 Covington High School Yearbook.)

Tribute To A Fallen Teammate…
One tragic incident darkened Covington football this season. Dave Murray, a stellar performer, suffered a head injury in a practice session and passed away on September 5, 1059. Medical research determined a previous injury, not directly related to football. However, the Boosters Club provided a lasting tribute to Dave Murray at the west end of Smith Field, with a new flag pole embedded in a memorial base.

A moment of silence is observed by the football squad in front of the memorial built in honor of Dave Murray, who was fatally injured during a practice game.

1959 BUCCS - 8-1



Tipp City




Xenia Woodrow






Miami East




Dayton Kiser


West Milton


Bob Hartley #40 and Tom Iddings #30 close in a Milton ball carrier.
Tom Iddings heads for the goal with blockers leading the way.
Miami East defenders attempt to stop Jim Sampson.
Gordon McMaken delivers a pass.
Team captain Jim Sampson talks with head coach Blair Irvin and assistant coach Frank Dunn.