John Mosley came to the Colorado A&M Aggies in 1939 as a National Merit Scholarship student and decided to play football for football coach Harry W. Hughes. When Mosley stepped onto the football field he became the first black college football player in the Mountain States Conference (Skyline Conference) and first in the state of Colorado in over 30 years. Mosley played various positions on the varsity team of the Colorado Aggies between 1940 and 1942, including fullback. John Mosley battled discrimination from other football teams, and with the help of his teammate Lewis "Dude" Dent he was able to break color barriers in sports throughout the Rocky Mountain Region.
John Mosley wrestled for Aggie wrestling coach Julius Wagner at Colorado State during his college days. Mosley won all-conference honors as a wrestler and in his junior and senior years, Mosley was elected to be the class vice president.
World War II
During the Second World War, he tried to join the United States Army Air Corps but was sent to Fort Sill for artillery training instead, and managed to join the Air Corps only after writing many letters to get into flight school. Mosley then went to the Tuskegee Institute to learn how to fly for the US Army Air Corp, a feat seen in the movie The Tuskegee Airmen starring Laurence Fishburne. Mosley stayed in the Army, flying until 1970.
In 1998, John Mosley was elected to the Colorado State University Sports Hall of Fame for his achievements in football and wrestling. In 2009, Mosley was inducted into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame as a great athlete and pioneer of Colorado sports. Mosley died at the age of 93 on May 22, 2015.
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- "John W. Mosley Papers". denverlibrary.org. Retrieved 6 November 2013.
- Denver Post, Tuskegee Airman, sports pioneer, John Mosley, Denver native
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