Masten Park grad Art Powell was taught basketball by Fred Burkhard, who learned the game from James Naismith. Powell went on to play Basketball, Baseball and Football at Syracuse. He played on the 1904 AAU Buffalo German team that won the first ever basketball tournament at the 1904 St. Louis Olympics.
Powell helped shape football as an umpire and referee for college (including Syracuse games) and NFL games. He went on to coach basketball at Rochester, Indiana before coming to Buffalo in 1916. Powell became the first long term coach on record of the football program, as well as the first coach of the basketball program.
Although Powell's impact is much more profound in Basketball where he coached for 28 years winning 198 games including a 15-0 season in 1932, Powell also captured 13 wins in 6 years at football coach, including a 7-5 stretch between 1917-18 which concluded with a 81-0 destruction of Hobart.