The Cleveland Rams

The NFL Champs Who Left Too Soon, 1936–1945

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About the Book

In 2016 the Rams left St. Louis for Los Angeles—having departed L.A. for St. Louis in 1995—and caused much heartbreak among fans. NFL teams are notorious for decamping to more profitable markets and the Rams’ history of opportunistic moves goes back to 1946, when they left Cleveland, their original hometown, where fans had cheered them to a championship a month earlier.
The move to L.A. from Cleveland shocked the NFL and shook up its power structure. It also jolted the all-white league into reintegration, prepared the way for the Browns, and made the Rams the only NFL champs ever to have spent the following season in a different city.
This is the story of how the Rams went from a home-grown Ohio team funded by local businessmen to the first major-league franchise on the West Coast, and how their departure jumpstarted a chain of events in Cleveland that continues to this day.

About the Author(s)

James C. Sulecki is the corporate content director of a northeastern Ohio business media company. He lives in Mentor, Ohio.

Bibliographic Details

James C. Sulecki
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 288
Bibliographic Info: 36 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2016
pISBN: 978-0-7864-9943-4
eISBN: 978-1-4766-2645-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Preface 1
Introduction: “A Champion scram team” 6
Part I: ­Start-Up
1. “We became the Rams” 15
2. Razzle-Dazzled and Bedraggled 26
3. This Time Pro Football Was Going to Work in Cleveland 39
4. Rams to the Slaughter 51
Part II: Upstarts
5. Race-Wrecking Rams 60
6. The Rams’ Lewis and Clark Expedition 76
7. “The public be pleased” 89
8. The War Year, the Lost Year 106
Part III: On the Up and Up
9. Twenty Months to a Title 117
10. The Hero’s Journey to Cleveland 131
11. A New Power Rises in the West 142
12. “An even zero”: The Title Game 162
Part IV: Up and Gone
13. “The public be damned” 177
14. “The Cleveland Rams ceased to exist” 196
Appendix: What Became of Selected Individuals 217
Chapter Notes 225
Bibliography 245
Index 268

Book Reviews & Awards

Winner—The Nelson Ross Award, Professional Football Researchers Association.
“Sulecki has written a readable account of the Cleveland Rams that flow nicely, and is often hard to put down. It is an interesting story, and is filled with fascinating details…a well researched and well written account of the Rams years in Cleveland and beyond”—Sport in American History; “the first book to examine the history of the Cleveland Rams and the context surrounding the team’s move to Los Angeles. The research is thorough…recommended”—Mind’s Eye Press.