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Veryl Switzer

African American professional football player, educator. Born: August 6, 1932, Nicodemus, Kansas.

Veryl A. Switzer, born in 1932 in Nicodemus, the son of Fred and Ora Switzer and descendent Zach Fletcher, one of the first settlers in Nicodemus.

Switzer was a standout football and track star in high school at Bogue High School, near Nicodemus, and at Kansas State University. He earned three All-America honors as a running back and defensive back for KSU. In 1954, he was selected in the NFL draft, by the Green Bay Packers in the fourth round, the highest draft pick ever from KSU.

Switzer played two seasons with the Green Bay Packers. He then completed his military obligation, serving in the U.S. Air Force. After the service, he played three years of Canadian football—one year with the Calgary Stampeders and two years with the Montreal Alouettes.

He spent a decade working at the Chicago Board of Education before returning to KSU in an administrative capacity in 1969.  He held several positions, both in the academic and athletic departments before retiring.

Switzer has maintained his ties to Nicodemus. In 1961 he began to purchase nearby farm and pasture land and has continued to operate the farm after his retirement from KSU.  In 2009 the Veryl Switzer Back to History Camp was established for youth to spend a week visiting both K-State and Nicodemus.

Entry: Switzer, Veryl

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: March 2009

Date Modified: April 2013

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.