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Civil Rights Summit Shines Light on Strong's Historic Hire

Updated: Thursday, April 10 2014, 03:39 PM CDT

As a child growing up in the segregated south, Bill Russell's mother wanted him to play in the front yard in hopes of exposing him to ignorance and hate at an early age

"They will say things to you, good or bad," recalled Russell. "But it has nothing to do with you. It has to do with them and their perspective."

What started in Russell's front lawn very well may have changed the overall landscape of sports. 58 years after Russell was hired as the NBA's first black head coach, Charlie Strong tackled Texas history as he became UT's first African-American head coach in any sport.

"This is a historical day," Strong admitted when he was introduced on January 6. "It was a historical day when the president was named the President of the United States also. There is always going to be a first somewhere, so this had to be the first."
 
Manor high school head football coach Sadd Jackson wasn't sure he'd live long enough to see a black head coach at Texas and Texas A&M at the same time. But Jackson says he hopes the door has been opened thanks to an open mind and not strictly skin color; a sentiment Hall of Famer Jim Brown backs

"Coach Strong feels like he was the best man for the job at Texas and not because he's an African-American, but just because he's a good football coach," Jackson said.

"Those who chose your coach and chose him for the right reasons did not choose him because he is black," Brown proclaimed. "And if you did, you did the wrong thing."

Those lessons Bill Russell learned on his front lawn and he shared just across this LBJ lawn Wednesday, prove that when it comes to opening a closed mind about civil rights: the grass is always greener on the other side.

by Adam Winkler

Civil Rights Summit Shines Light on Strong's Historic Hire


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Scores & Schedules

October 22, 2014 07:13 GMT

Latest scores, upcoming games

WORLD SERIES

Tuesday - Game 1

San Francisco 7, Kansas City 1

Wednesday - Game 2

San Francisco (Peavy 6-4) at Kansas City (Ventura 14-10), 8:07 p.m.

NHL

Tuesday's Games

Nashville 4, Arizona 3, SO

Boston 5, San Jose 3

N.Y. Rangers 4, New Jersey 3, OT

Toronto 5, N.Y. Islanders 2

Montreal 2, Detroit 1, OT

Winnipeg 3, Carolina 1

Chicago 4, Philadelphia 0

Dallas 6, Vancouver 3

Florida 4, Colorado 3, OT

Tampa Bay 2, Calgary 1, OT

Wednesday's Games

Toronto at Ottawa, 7 p.m.

Philadelphia at Pittsburgh, 8 p.m.

Washington at Edmonton, 9:30 p.m.

Buffalo at Anaheim, 10:30 p.m.

NBA PRESEASON

Tuesday's Games

Minnesota 107, Indiana 89

Utah 105, Oklahoma City 91

Miami 90, Houston 85

Portland 93, Denver 75

Phoenix 114, L.A. Lakers 108

Golden State 125, L.A. Clippers 107

Wednesday's Games

Houston at Orlando, 7 p.m.

Brooklyn at Boston, 7:30 p.m.

Washington at New York, 7:30 p.m.

Cleveland at Memphis, 8 p.m.

Minnesota at Milwaukee, 8 p.m.

Atlanta at San Antonio, 8:30 p.m.

Portland vs. L.A. Lakers at Ontario, CA, 10 p.m.

Phoenix at L.A. Clippers, 10:30 p.m.

MLS

Tuesday

No games scheduled

Wednesday

Chivas USA at Real Salt Lake, 9:30 p.m.

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KEYE-TV Sports Team


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