“I never saw him play, but he was my offensive line coach at OCU so you heard stories on how good he was,” said Frank Bruno, 88, who played football at OCU in the 1950s. “Back in those days you played both ways. He also was a pretty good linebacker.”
Led by Gutowsky, the Goldbugs (OCU's nickname until 1944) were a combined 15-1 in 1929 and 1930, including going 3-0 against Oklahoma and Oklahoma A&M.
“OCU had great football teams back then,” Smith said. “They were really, really good. One of the best players they ever had was Ace Gutowsky. I'll never forget as a young boy they used to put the light on in the tower after they won. And they won a lot back then.”
Gutowsky was born in the Polish extraction in Russia in 1909. His father moved to the United States when Ace was an infant. They settled in Kingfisher.
After serving in the Army during World War II, Gutowsky went into the oil business with his father, Assaph, who discovered an oil field in west Edmond that produced 117 million barrels of oil.
Gutowsky also was an accomplished bridge player. He won the 1951 match national title, earning a “life master” rating, the first Oklahoman to achieve the highest ranking in bridge.