Robert "Bo" Scott (2016)

Robert “Bo” Scott had a fine high school and college football career and played in the CFL and NFL, but it all started in Connellsville, PA.

“I was talking recently to my grandson,” Scott recalled. “He plays quarterback in football and I was talking to him about my experience and I remember Wally Schroyer

Chuck Muncie  

He was my first coach when I was in second grade. I remember he’s the one that got me into football. I remember one day my brother had gone to football practice and I asked my mother if I could go and my brother was gone and I saw a couple of other guys and they were on there way to practice and I followed them up the path through the woods to practice. I stood around and was watching practice and Wally walked over and said ‘Who are you?’ I told him who I was and he gave me a uniform and my brother had a fit and I went home and my mother said ‘what are you doing?!’. That’s how I started playing football.”

Scott played at Connellsville from 1959 to 1961.

“We didn’t have any exceptional teams,” Scott said. “But we were competitive and had pretty good teams.”

His high school football coaches were Roger Spiedel his sophomore year and Dan Hamil his junior and senior seasons.

“I was a quarterback for years from booster football all the way through my sophomore year,” Scott explained. “And then the new coach told me he thought I’d be more beneficial to the team if I played running back. At that time I didn’t think much of it. I had been playing quarterback from like second grade all the way through, and at first I hesitated, but I said he’s the coach and I can’t do anything about it. As it turns out, that probably was the best move that ever happened to me.”

Scott also ran track and played basketball in high school.

“Football was always my main sport,” Scott recalled. “I started on the basketball team and I did well in track. I had a few school records. I first started out in the high jump and then ran the 100-yard and 200 hundred-yard dash and the relays. I loved track - I loved them all.”

Scott garnered All County, All WPIAL and All State honors and played for the West in a 34-14 victory over the East in an intrastate contest in the 1961 Big 33 Game.

Redstone High School product Don Croftcheck and Scott served as co-captains for the West squad in the Big 33 game.

Scott was a highly sought after football recruit when he graduated in 1961, and chose to go to Ohio State.

“I had a lot of schools after me,” Scott stated. “Woody Hayes was the reason I went to Ohio State. He came to see me play. Plus I didn’t know it, but when we played the Big 33 game he came over to Hershey, PA to see me play in that game.”

Scott played on some fair teams at Ohio State from 1961 to 1963. He played freshman ball in 1961 and was on a 1962 squad that went 6-3 and a 1963 team that finished 5-3-1.

Scott had a good relationship with Coach Hayes.

“Oh, yeah - it was either you liked him or you didn’t like him,” Scott said of Hayes. “There was no in-between and I know there are some guys that didn’t have much to say good about him and there were a lot of guys who raved about him, but the main thing is everybody respected him. I had a great relationship with him.”

Scott had a chance to play with some outstanding players at OSU.
“We had Paul Warfield - he was a year ahead of me,” Scott offered. “We had Matt Snell who ended up playing for the New York Jets and there was Bob Vogel and Daryl Sanders, they were two tackles and were number one draft choices.”

One of Scott’s fondest memories is his first varsity touchdown at Ohio State in 1962 during a 41-7 win over North Carolina.

“I remember the first touchdown I made,” Scott said. “It was against North Carolina and back then you had to go both ways - offense and defense and I was in on defense and intercepted a pass and ran it in for a touchdown.”

Scott didn’t play his senior season at Ohio State and went to the Canadian Football League with the Ottawa Roughriders in 1964 and spent four seasons in the CFL.

“The highlight in Canada was playing against older brother Wilber,” Scott laughed. “He was playing for Montreal and we had a lot of fun and he tried to talk trash to me when we played them. He was a linebacker so we ran into each other a few times. It was interesting when we played each other.”

Scott was a third round selection of the Cleveland Browns in 1965 and also was drafted by the AFL Oakland Raiders.

“At the time I had a three-year contract - so I played out my contract and my last year I had a contract dispute,” Scott recalled. “I played out my option in Canada and several teams contacted me and wanted to know who had my rights and it was Cleveland and Oakland. I had a good career in Canada. I was set to go to the Raiders and at the last minute Cleveland called me. Jim Brown had retired right after I was drafted and Ernie Green got hurt and they contacted me. I didn’t go to the Raiders. I ended up going to the Browns.”

Scott played for the Browns from 1969 to 1974 and rushed for 2,124 yards and 18 touchdowns in his career. He also hauled in 112 aerials for 826 yards and six touchdowns.

“We went to the playoffs and we almost went to the championship game my first year there,” Scott stated. “I was a starter the whole time I was there. When I first went there, I wasn’t a starter - they drafted Ron Johnson from Michigan and he was a holdout and he came in late, but they gave him the starting job. After about three or four games head coach Blanton Collier came to me and said “I know you are frustrated.” He said he told offensive coordinator Nick Skorich to alternate Johnson and me. We did that for three games and then I had an exceptional game against the Giants and from that day on I was the starter and after the season they traded Johnson to the Giants.”

Scott played in the same backfield with Hall of Fame running back Leroy Kelly.

“He was good,” Scott explained. “I told him that, you’ve got to give me a pat on the back because you know I helped you get in the Hall of Fame - I always joke with him when I see him.”

The Steelers vs. the Browns was always the marquis game on the schedule.

“It was crazy,” Scott said. “When it came up that was the game you looked forward to playing in and the fans made it that much more electrifying.”

When he retired Scott went back to Columbus, OH.

“I worked with kids,” Scott stated. “I was assistant director of juvenile detention center and I worked for the juvenile court and worked with them for 28 years until I retired.”

Scott, 73, still lives in Columbus and attends Ohio State games as well as going to Cleveland on a regular basis to watch the Browns.
He has four children from a previous marriage and has been divorced for some time. He also has 12 grandchildren.

“Just about all of the grandkids play sports,” Scott reported. “Ten out of the 12 play sports. Some days I just go from game to game watching them play and one of my older granddaughters is on a basketball scholarship at the University of Akron.”

He doesn’t get back to Connellsville very often, but it still holds a special place in his heart.

“It was a good experience growing up there,” Scott stated. “I here people saying they grew up in a small town and I can appreciate growing up in a small town. There is no question that I grew up in a great era back there.”


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