Charles Follis

Charles Follis

The Black Cyclone

First African-American professional American football player.

Client Since 2021.

Charles W. Follis, a.k.a. “The Black Cyclone,” was the first African-American professional American football player. He played for the Shelby Blues of the “Ohio League” from 1902 to 1906. On September 16, 1904, Follis signed a contract with Shelby making him the first Black man contracted to play professional football on an integrated team. He was also the first African-American catcher to move from college baseball into the Negro leagues.