On this day in 1968, one of the greatest moments in sports history happened. It was also one of the greatest moments in world history.
Tommie Smith and John Carlos, two runners from San Jose State University (my alma mater), made a demonstration that forever changed history. After having won gold and bronze medals, respectively, in the 200-meter running event, both Smith and Carlos raised a black-gloved fist during the national anthem in a gesture towards human rights. This came at a time in America where racial equality was still a distant dream.
What transpired afterward was equally telling of the times in America. There were people who understood the importance of their message; there were many who disliked the act. Smith and Carlos were immediately sent back home, they (and their families) received death threats. It became discussion over and over about how a sporting event was no place for what they deemed a political protest. What these two did was completely unacceptable and disrespectful.
I remember writing up a recap of the 49ers drafting Penn State linebacker NaVorro Bowman. I was at my friend’s house and I had brought my laptop with me. At the time I was still getting my footing as a beat writer. But I felt that Bowman was a smart pick. Even though he was not a first round selection, he had a strong pedigree and had potential for growth.
Since then, Bowman was a four-time First All-Pro, three-time Pro Bowl selection and at times, was the best defender on the team. And that’s with Patrick Willis next to him.
Bowman was a great professional to work with and he always gave me respect. He was a beast of a linebacker and it’s a shame injuries prevented him from reaching his best potential.
Regardless, he was beloved by many fans and they will always cherish his pick-six at The Stick. That’s an image that will last a lifetime.
So what do you do when you’ve announced plans to move away from the city you’ve called home for 46 years? You pen this letter! (Read the responses to the tweet.)
On Friday the Warriors officially unveiled their “Statement” uniforms for the season. Basically, they’re wearing this every Saturday to replace the slate uniforms they had for the past couple of seasons. This uniform is to pay homage to the city of Oakland. The city in which they are leaving for a nicer, fancier arena in San Francisco. Add on the fact that the Raiders are leaving for Las Vegas, it hurts the people of “The Town” that two of their beloved franchises no longer want to call Oakland as home.
So here are the Warriors, who have planned to leave Oakland since Joe Lacob and Peter Guber took over, trying to make amends before the exodus. The team has worn throwbacks in the past but all these throwbacks that feature a city name is that of San Francisco. Both uniforms have featured San Francisco or The City on it. But never in franchise history has a uniform featured a moniker for Oakland. And the Warriors have played in Oakland longer than any other location they have in history.
Well, did you expect me to like this?
The deal with the Japanese company for $20 million a year is the highest contract for jersey ads in the NBA. Of course the Warriors would do this.
Aside from the fact that jersey ads exist, the red doesn’t match with the white uniform. At least the blue jerseys feature the patch in white.
But still, it just looks like some random letter on the jersey. Oh well. This is the NBA we have right now.
When the A’s announced today that their April 17 home game against the White Sox will have free admission, it sounded like a cool idea but also popped this question in my mind: Would the stadium even be filled for this game?
Columnist Ray Ratto (link above in tweet) shared those exact thoughts.
The idea of a free game is great as it really allows all those people who may never have considered going to a game an incentive to go to a game without the cost of paying for a ticket. I don’t know how the logistics are for parking or concessions, but I will assume that prices for those will remain.
But still, a free game is a pretty nifty novelty. And it would leave people to believe that the stadium will be full for the game since the cost of entry is free. However, it could reveal that the fans or the city don’t have enough people to show up to a free game.
This could be troubling for an organization that desires to build a new stadium in the city. Also, it will lead to many different speculations as to why the stadium isn’t filled — especially for a season that is only a few weeks old.
Do people not care enough? Is the team unappealing? Is the stadium too old?
There are a lot of factors. This might be the A’s trying to find out those answers by doing this promotion.
Scott Hatteberg celebrates his walk-off homer which gave the A’s their 20th consecutive win on 9/4/02.
My friend texted me the other day and asked me how I felt about the Cleveland Indians challenging the Oakland Athletics’ American League record of 20 straight wins set back in 2002.
It was a scenario I was very well aware of anytime a team reaches double digits in a winning streak. Many teams since 2002 have reached that plateau but no team has come close to eclipsing the record set by my favorite team. Until the Indians.
On Monday night, the Indians dominated the toothless Detroit Tigers 11-0 to win their 19th game in a row. One more today and they tie the A’s for the American League record.
The Indians are my favorite to win the World Series this year. I have a soft spot for the team and since high school, I adopted them as my second favorite baseball team. My friend also wants to see them win it all this year. And that’s what I hope is the end result for the team this year.
But please, Indians, don’t win 20 games in a row.
When I took a photo of my TV yesterday and shared the above tweet on Twitter, I didn’t know it would generate so much discussion and impressions. (The tweet has gotten more activity than my last viral tweet.)
But as I read the responses to the tweet (along with seeing how many people were liking and retweeting, including some notable Twitter users like Shaun King) it showed me that the divide is still strong on this topic.
Some people felt that kneeling during the anthem is disrespectful. Others believe that the fight is worth kneeling for. But as I continued to read the comments, it reflected so much to me that our country is in this state of divide. There is an uncertainty and ignorance of the issue.