The newspaper industry provided me a four-decade career experiencing inspiration, dedication and just plain fun. The start of my career covering the Chargers, college, high school sports and Olympic athletes came full circle with Don Coryell’s Pro Football Hall of Fame induction on August 5 in Canton, Ohio. I helped Hall of Famer Dan Fouts with research on Coryell’s remarkable record of first-time Pro Bowlers with the SAN DIEGO Chargers and Cardinal for Fouts’ presentation to the voters
PHOTO (News & Observer): Fuquay-Varinia defensive back is committed to remaining in the Triangle playing for North Carolina.
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By TOM SHANAHAN
FUQUAY-VARINA – Two impactful memories – spanning the natural emotional responses of joy to anger — mark the teen-age years of Malcolm Ziglar, a Fuquay-Varina High senior bound for North Carolina on a football scholarship.
The first filled him with gratitude, taking place as a 7-year-old on November 9, 2013 at North Carolina’s Kenan Stadium. The joyful day, upon growing into a college football recruit 10 years later, unwittingly influenced his commitment to the Tar Heels. More on that later.
The other could have embittered him as a 14-year-old on January 30, 2021. He was outside his home when Fuquay-Varina Police Department patrolmen arrived over a report of a stolen dirt bike. Ziglar, an African American, was handcuffed and placed in the backseat of a police cruiser. His friend, who is white, was only briefly handcuffed and wasn’t detained in the car.
Ziglar tried to explain the dirt bike in his possession was the result of a business he started. He bought dirt bikes from Facebook Marketplace or Craig’s List and fixed them to resell. The incident finally ended when his father, Sharndale Ziglar, came outside with the bill of sale Malcolm had saved.
Malcolm, though, didn’t let anger or bitterness take him to a downward cycle.
“I forgive,” Ziglar said earlier this week before football practice. “I’m not the get-angry type. There is no going back on what happened. People make mistakes. You just hope people learn from it.”
Click here to read the rest of my News and Observer story.
Previous weekly features this season:
— September 29, Fuquay-Varina’s Malcolm Ziglar, North Carolina commit
— September 22, Wake Forest’s Zane Williams, North Carolina State commit
— September 15, South Garner’s Nnamdi Ogboko, Georgia commit
— September 8, Southeast Raleigh’s Chase Robinson, two offers.
— September 1, Southern Durham’s Isaiah Campbell, 30-plus offers.
— August 25, Rolesville’s Isiah Jones, committed to NC State
— August 18, Millbrook’s Mason Fortune, underrated prospect.
Your correspondent hard at work in the rain at the Southeast Raleigh-Fuquay-Varina game. Thanks to Steve Worthy for the photo.
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Click here for my story on the 1962 Rose Bowl and Segregation awarded first place by the Football Writers Association of America. I tell untold stories on Michigan State’s leading role and the true pioneers of college football integration. Click here to read a summary.
Click here to purchase The Right Thing To Do
THE RIGHT THING TO DO
The True Pioneers of College Football Integration in the 1960s
Foreword by Ruffin McNeill
Click here to purchase Raye of Light.
RAYE OF LIGHT
Jimmy Raye, Duffy Daugherty, the 1ntegration of College Football and the 1965-66 Michigan State Spartans
Foreword by Tony Dungy