The Gene Mingo Page

Gene Mingo takes handoff from Frank Tripucka during 1962 win over Houston.

Born the youngest of 5 children growing up in Akron, Ohio, Gene dropped out of school to take care of a very sick mother. As a kid growing up Baseball was Gene's first love. The love of baseball was instilled in Gene by his uncle Jesse. Gene's Uncle Jesse played baseball with the Birmingham Braves, he had played with such greats as Satchel Paige and Josh Gibson and many other's. Gene's uncle had taught him how to throw from his catchers crouch to get the runner going to 2nd base. When Gene signed his football contract with the Broncos, it broke his uncle's heart. Gene's said his uncle didn't speak to him for two year's because of that.
In 1956 Gene joined the U.S. Navy, this is where Gene got the chance to play football. Gene became the first player from Oceana Master Jet Base to make the football team at Little Creek. Gene achieved many honors while playing in the Navy. After three year's, he was Honorably Discharged in 1959.
After the Navy Gene wrote a letter to the Broncos, Dean Griffing had heard about Gene from another person who was in the military. During training camp Gene won a kicking tryout, and that wass the start of his spectacular career.
Gene's career spanned 12 years from 1960 to 1972, he played for the Broncos, Raiders, Dolphins, Saints, Redskins and the Steelers. Gene still holds or shares many records for the Broncos. Here is a list of Gene's Bronco records.
Best Rushing Avg.(career)4.20yds-1960-64(8th all-time)

Longest Scoring Run from Scrimmage 82yds vs Raiders 10/05/62(1st all-time)

Best Avg. Per Punt Return(career)11.89yds-1960-64(4th all-time)

Longest Scoring Punt Return-76yds vs Patriots 09/09/60(8th all-time)

Most Points Scored(career)408-1960-64(5th all-time)

Most Points Scored(season)137-1962(2nd all-time)

123-1960(7th all-time)

Most Points Scored(game)21 vs LA Chargers-12/10/60(2nd all-time)\par 20 vs San Diego-10/06/63(4th all-time)

19 vs Oakland-10/05/62(5th all-time)

Most Points Scored by Rookie(season-123-1960(1st all-time)

Most Points Scored by Rookie(game)-21 vs LA Chargers 12/10/60(2nd all-time)

Most PAT Attempts(career)126-1960-64(5th all-time)

Most PAT Made(career)120-1960-64(5th all-time)

Most PAT Made by Rookie(season)33made-36att-1960(3rd all-time)

Best PAT Percentage(career).952-1960-64(7th all-time)

Most FG Attempted(career)119-1960-64(5th all-time)

Most FG Attempted(season)39-1962(1st all-time)

Most FG Attempted(game)7 vs San Diego-10/06/63(2nd all-time)

Most FG Made(career)72-1960-64(5th all-time)

\par Most FG Made(season)27-1962(7th all-time)

Most FG Made(game)5 vs San Diego 10/06/63(4th all-time)

Most FG Made by Rookie(season)18-1960(3rd all-time)

Best FG Percentage(career).605-1960-64(6th all-time)

Longest FG-53yds vs San Diego-09/07/62(17th all-time)

52yds vs San Diego-09/07/62(19th all-time)

Gene has been recognized as the first black field goal kicker in the AFL/NFL. In 1960 he had the 1st punt return for a touchdown in the AFL, that touchdown won the first ever AFL game as the Broncos defeated the Patriots. Gene also scored the first points in Mile High Stadium, then called Bears Stadium, with a 18yd field goal. He led the AFL in scoring in 1960 with 123 points and in 1962 with 137 points. Gene was known as a very versatile player, he played several positions including halfback, kicker, punt and kick returner just to name a few.
In 1986 Gene was inducted into Summit County, Ohio Sports Hall of Fame. Strangely enough Gene has yet to be inducted into the Broncos Ring of Fame. To me this is beyond belief, a man who accomplished so much, espically during his years with the Broncos has yet to be honored by the team he help put on the map.
After football Gene had a tough battle with cocaine addiction, 2 painful back surgeries and lingering back pain caused Gene to try cocaine in hopes of easing the severe pain. After a period of abuse Gene had a spiritual awakening. From that point on Gene has dedicated his life to God, Family and helping others. Gene was hired by Valley Hope Association in Parker Colorado to be a Alcohol & Drug Counselor for their new facility, which opened May 1989.
At the age of 50 Gene earned his G.E.D. in order to continue with college classes to ultimately become a Level III(highest in state) Colorado State Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor, earning enough credits towards his Associates Degree. Gene was employed by Valley Hope for 10 1/2 years counseling adolescents to adults seeking treatment for their addictions. December 31, 1999 Gene retired from Parker Valley Hope with the full intention of taking it easy and relaxing. But Gene's desire to help people was to strong and Gene was drawn back into private practice. Gene now does private counseling for relasped and newly referred patients, family intervention, some martial counseling and motivational/inspirational speaking.
I asked Gene if there was anything he would like to add, he said only this."I set many records, with a few still held for over 40 years, and I have firsts that cannot be taken away-such as The first black field goal kicker in the AFL/NFL and I have NEVER been recognized by the Denver Broncos Ring of Fame-- to which I have never been able to understand.

For me, Ross Rutter this page started out being about a football player I respected. As I have had the immense pleasure of working with Mr. Gene Mingo this page has become about more than an athlete I respect. This page has become about a person I truly respect and admire. What Gene Mingo has gone through and what he is today speaks volumes about the type of human being he is. Gene Mingo devotes his time to help others, it take a certain type of person to do that. Thank You Mr. Gene Mingo for who you are and what you do, this was truly a privlege and a honor for me. Thanks Again, Ross.

I would also like to take a moment and give a big Thanks to my good friend Jim of STEELERCHIEF.COM He was the reason this page is possible, Jim and Gene are friends and Jim introduced me to Gene. I would like to Thank Jim again for all his help on this.

Below is the address for the Denver Broncos, please take a moment and send a note off to them and ask why Gene Mingo hasn't gotten his due.

Mr. Pat Bowlen
c/o The Denver Broncos
13655 Broncos Parkway
Englewood, CO 80112