Five Black Athletes That Changed The Game

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Cole Perry, Staff Writer

There are a lot of sports in the world today and even more athletes. For Black History Month it would be an honor to recognize just a few of the countless African American athletes who changed the game in their respective sports. 

Number one is Jackie Robinson in baseball. Robinson was the first African American to play major league baseball. He joined the Montreal Royals in 1946 and went to the Dodgers in 1947. He is well known for, not only how well he played baseball, but for breaking the color barrier. 

Next in American football we have Marlin Briscoe. Briscoe was the first quarterback in the NFL. He was drafted to the Denver Broncos as a cornerback, but told his team he’d return home and become a teacher if he didn’t get to try out as quarterback. “It’s just so many different historic things that happened in the year 1968, it was unfathomable,” Briscoe said. “It just seemed poetic justice, so to speak, that the color barrier be broken that year at that position. For some reason, I was ordained to be the litmus test for that. I think I did a good job.”

Third is Jesse Owens in track. Jesse Owens was a track and field star and a four time gold medalist in the 1936 Olympic games. He specialized in sprints and long jump. At this time, the Olympics were held in Germany and the Nazi party was very influential. Despite these trials, Owens became a hero to many. 

Muhammad Ali is known as one of the greatest boxers of all time. By the end of his career, his record was 56 wins and only 5 losses. He fought in more than one way in his career. He was active in the Civil Rights protests. “Hating people because of their color is wrong. And it doesn’t matter which color does the hating. It’s just plain wrong.”

And finally, we have Michael Jordan with the sport of basketball. Michael Jordan is often regarded as the best basketball player of all time. Jordan was drafted to the Chicago Bulls in 1984 as third overall draft pick. He led the bulls to win the championship in 1991, and then went on to win five more. 

  All of these athletes are different in the sports they play but they’re the same in the message that they givre. The message is that all of these athletes changed the game.