Frank “Dabby” Niglio

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  • December 15, 2023
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A “shooting star” is a star that for a brief period shines so brightly that is lights up the whole heavens. For two years, Frank Niglio, was that kind of star as a receiver for the Red Tornadoes. Dabby, played 21 games as a Tornado wideout, and caught at least one pass in every game. Before his career ended he led the Tornadoes in 11 career pass receiving categories; and in the remaining category, career receptions, he finished number two with 62. For that one year, 1966, you couldn’t imagine a better pass catcher. He broke records for most single season receptions…43; single game receptions…8; single season receiving yardage…178; single season receiving touchdowns….16; single game receiving touchdowns….3. He caught at least one touchdown pass in very game he played. Additionally it seemed that every pass he caught was spectacular. Football fans would talk about his catches, compare them with others he’d made, argue about which were more spectacular. You can still get a good conversation going by bringing up the catch and run for a touchdown in the Carlisle game in 1966.

These were glory days for Tornado Football, and Baddy and Greg Dovial who threw the passes he caught has a great deal to do with kicking off a 10-year period when the Tornadoes dominated Coal Region Football.

Dabby was All Citizen, All Anthracite, All Eastern Conference, All Susquehanna Conference, and All State. He went on to Yankton College where he was a 3-year letterman and led the team in receiving two years. He was an All Conference Selection as a college receiver and played in the 1970 Copper Bowl. He is presently a teacher-coach at North Schuylkill High School.

Categories: 1985 Hall of Fame