BY EVAN WEINER
The New York Giants and Jets are opening up training camp in the next few days and all eyes will be on SUNY Cortland for Jets fans and SUNY Albany for Giants fans as the teams prepare for the 2010 season. But once upon a time, the National Football League and the Giants were considered a real alternative to the Canadian Football League.
The CFL paid better salaries.
In 1953, the NFL would set an attendance record and by 1954 most of the NFL teams had local TV contracts. No matter, the NFL was a step above semi-pro football and another league had set its sights on a war with the NFL.
The Canadian Football League.
The CFL signed the 1952 Heisman Trophy Winner Billy Vessels, along with Eddie LeBaron and Gene Brito. In 1955, LeBaron, Brito, Norb Heckler, Alex Webster and Tom Dublinski left the CFL for NFL teams after representatives from the two competing leagues failed to work out a no raiding treaty.