Cards: Upper Deck 1991, ProSet 1989, GameDay 1992, Collegiate Collection 1991
Acquired: TTM 2016, C/o Home
Sent: 11/14/16 Received: 12/16/17 (397 days)
See Also: Hart Lee Dykes
Hart Lee Dykes had some very nice cards during his heyday. Outside of his GameDay and his ProSet entries, there was his Score 1990 and his Action Packed 1990/91 that had solid action shots. Color me unimpressed by the warmup picture of him in his Upper Deck debut. (It is notable because it comes from a company that boasts about its quality action photography and poster cards.) The Collegiate Collection card is an OK photo but a terribly bland design. Why did I send those cards and not the Score 1990 or the Action Packed 1990? – I didn’t. He replaced my cards with these other ones.
In a rare move I traded the Upper Deck 1991 to D-Rock on Sportscollectors.net- ironically for another Patriot, Eugene Chung (Action Packed Rookies 1992) for a set need.
I then applied a remover to take the dedication to ‘Earl’ from the GameDay 1992 card. I don’t use removers, ever, but I made a special exemption here. I genuinely wanted that autographed card and to flip through the collection and see the name Earl in it would just drive me nuts. Again I do not like the idea of removing autographs/ dedications from cards. Typically that is a technique that is reserved for resale purposes, something I am strictly against.
I kept the sad looking Collegiate Connection card and the Pro Set 1989. Hart Lee certainly had a very unique autograph. I mean I think he’s one of a handful of players who could get away with using a heart as the main part of his autograph.
Despite having a bevy of teams get caught with their hands in the cookie jar bidding for Dykes’ services, Hart Lee went on to have a prolific college career and still holds many of the Big 8 records today.
Card: Score 1991
Acquired: TTM 1991, Patriots Blitz
Hart Lee Dykes was a beastly athlete as a child, winning the Pass, Punt, Kick Competition and becoming an All Star high school receiver out of Bay City Texas, that was even documented in Sports Illustrated. A highly lauded recruit, Dykes would become the subject of a well documented bidding war between college programs to land him, and the ensuing brouhaha would land him squarely in the middle of a college football corruption scandal.
Surviving the scandal and granted immunity in exchange for his testimony, he’d be drafted by the New England Patriots out of Oklahoma State in 1989. Hart Lee would also be the highest rated wide receiver taken out of this infamously deep draft with the 17th overall pick. (Eric Metcalf was drafted by the Browns three picks ahead of Dykes but as a runningback.) Dykes’ rookie season seemed promising enough, playing in all 16 games and starting 8, lodging 49 receptions for 795 yards and 5 touchdowns, but he’d be overshadowed by fellow rookie Andre Rison in Indianapolis. In 1990, Dykes season appeared to be off to a good start but he’d shatter his kneecap, effectively ending his career. After being placed on injured reserve, he’d attempt a comeback over the next season or two, but his situation was only complicated by a bar room altercation with teammate Irving Fryar where Dykes would have his eye socket shattered in the fight. Shortly before he was cut, I got his autograph on this score 1991 card. At last glance the former Bay City, Texas resident had dabbled in real estate and was in the trucking business.
Well when your name is Hart Lee Dykes, you’ve got to come up with a clever autograph, so it makes perfect sense that he used a heart for his first name in a fun autograph with lots of loops and curves. At the time of his graduation from OSU, Dykes was the All-time leader in the Big 8 for receptions (203) and yards (3171), however sadly still has not been recognized by the school, possibly due to his involvement in OSUs recruitment scandal.
G/Gs 26/18 Rec 83 Yds 1344 Avg 16.2 Td 7 Lg 42
A Dykes highlight film: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5DYdc1LYxs