Jackie Walker’s true 1969 Tennessee story forgotten and unjustly overshadowed by 1970 USC-Alabama folklore

Although no one in the documentary says it, there seems to be a feeling that Southern Cal’s rout of Alabama was the shock that the University and a majority of the fans needed to support integration of the football program. But in fact, that same shock probably came the previous year when the Tennessee Volunteers, the team that Bryant always regarded as the Tide’s most bitter foe, thrashed the Tide 41-14 at Legion Field in Birmingham. (I know—I…

Continue ReadingJackie Walker’s true 1969 Tennessee story forgotten and unjustly overshadowed by 1970 USC-Alabama folklore

Purchase my new book: It’s the right thing to do

By TOM SHANAHAN My latest book on college football integration is available to pre-order. THE RIGHT THING TO DO The True Pioneers of College Football Integration in the 1960s Foreword by Ruffin McNeill Click here for summary and to purchase from August Publications:     *** As I said when I was invited to speak at the National Sports Media Association book festival on June 23 in Winston-Salem, no two books better tell an accurate story about college football…

Continue ReadingPurchase my new book: It’s the right thing to do

Part IV: College football integration lore, in the form of traffic, was steered down a fairy tale exit

NOTE: As a Detroit Tigers and Mangum fan, this is my letter to Tom Selleck, admittedly a bit tongue in cheek. The facts vs. fiction I present, though, tell the true story of college football integration’s pioneers in the 1960s. College football integration was fait accompli by 1970, thanks to the price paid by true pioneers. They knocked down the door. Alabama coach Bear Bryant didn’t open the door. He was pointed to it after coaching segregated teams…

Continue ReadingPart IV: College football integration lore, in the form of traffic, was steered down a fairy tale exit