John (Oscar) Downer joined the University Football Club in 1954 and quickly developed into a strong marking ruck-rover in the A1 side. Oscar played with ‘the Blacks’ up until the end of the 1958 season and in that time earned the respect of everyone for his ability as a footballer and a leader. He was a tough, fearless player with natural ball skills who contributed significantly to the successful sides of this era.
Oscar earned his Football Blue in 1955 and played for the State Amateur side in 1956 and 1957. He was a key member of the Premiership sides of 1954 and 1955.
Oscar captained ‘the Blacks’ in 1957 and 1958 and in this time he developed into an inspirational leader because of his aggressive approach to the ball. He won the Gunning Medal in 1958.
J.W. (Oscar) Downer was made an Honorary Life Member of the University Football Club in 1960.