Mintz, Barney : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Mintz, Barney

Bernard D. Mintz

Mintz played back for Tulane University in the 1930s. After graduating from Tulane Law School, Mintz became a lawyer, businessman, civic leader, and philanthropist. A lifelong resident of New Orleans, he opened a law practice with Samuel Rosenberg and after serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, Barney worked in the family furniture business, Lafayette Furniture Co.

A member of the Jewish fraternity Sigma Alpha Mu while at Tulane, Mintz was active in the New Orleans Jewish community. A president of the local Anti-Defamation League chapter, he was a member of the organization's national executive board and received the Torch of Liberty Award. Mintz also served as president of the New Orleans Jewish Federation, was a founder of the Jewish Endowment Foundation, and president of the local JCC (Jewish Community Center).

Barney was also a member of the National Conference of Christians and Jews, and was active in the larger New Orleans community. He served as president of the New Orleans United Negro College Fund, chairman of the March of Dimes and Christmas Seals, and was a board member of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, the Muscular Dystrophy Association of America, and the Tulane Alumni Association. Mintz passed away on May 16, 2003 at the age of 89. (the majority of the above information is from his obituary at

Birth and Death Dates:
b. unknown - d. May 16, 2003

Career Highlights:
A graduate of Isidore Newman Manual Training School (high school) in New Orleans, Mintz was a two sport star and led the football team to the city championship in 1930 (he was named All-Prep). He was an outstanding back at Tulane in the mid-1930s, although the Green Wave lost its first two games of the 1933 season, Barney's first year on the varsity. Although it was the first time Tulane had been beaten in consecutive games since 1928 and the first season opener Tulane had lost since 1921, the team rebounded and lost only once more during the rest of the year to finish the season with a record of 6-3-1. That year, Tulane was a charter member of the SEC (Southeastern Conference).

In 1934, the Green Wave finished the regular season with a record of 9-1-0 (SEC co-champions) and played in the first-ever Sugar Bowl game against Temple and its star Dave Smukler. In the first half, Smukler passed for one touchdown and ran for another as the Owls went on top, 14-0. But after the second Temple score, Tulane took over the game. With the score tied 14-14 in the third quarter Mintz threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to help Tulane defeat Temple, 20-14 (he also kicked two extra points). Considered one of Tulane's greatest teams, the 1934 squad won ten games; only the 1931 Rose Bowl team won more games in one season.

On January 1, 1935, Mintz threw the game-winning touchdown in the first-ever Sugar Bowl. The following season, Mintz was selected by Tulane coaches, Touchdown Club, and faculty as the student "who most typifies athletics at Tulane." In 2002, the practice field for Tulane's football team was renamed in his honor as the Barney Mintz Auxilary Field. In 1935, Mintz was named Grantland Rice All-America honorable mention, and was the team captain as the Green Wave posted its eighth consecutive winning season with a 6-4-0 record. They also got revenge on the Colgate team that dealt the Wave its only loss in 1934; Mintz's 90-yard interception return sparked a 14-6 win. Mintz is a member of the "T Club," Tulane University's Athletic Hall of Fame.

New Orleans, Louisiana

Career Dates:
Mintz played back at Tulane University from 1933-1935.

Physical description:
5'9", 180 pounds

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encyclopedia of JEWS in sports by Bernard Postal, Jesse Silver, and Roy Silver (New York: Bloch Publishing Co., 1965)