‘We got to tell our story’: The IU 10’s fight for racial justice in ’60s Indiana
There’s a photo that is perfectly snapped the next quarter of the 1968 Rose Bowl that shows two Indiana defenders colliding into the history as O.J. Simpson squeezes past them for the 2nd of his two touchdowns in a 14-3 USC triumph.
Among the Hoosiers is Black, the other White, an image that is fitting a school that produced initial African American player drafted in to the NFL – George Taliaferro in 1949.
Unbefitting of the system and maybe unknown at the time, there clearly was growing anger and resentment on campus that would prevent the Hoosiers from returning to Pasadena under mentor John Pont – this program tripped up by racial unrest that resulted in a 10-player walkout, maybe not unlike those seen this year across North America. To your IU 10, because the boycotting players had become known, 2020 has some noteworthy similarities to 1969.
In 1969, the Vietnam that is wildly unpopular War the narrative. Now, it’s COVID-19 and a human anatomy politic that can be fractured as ever, the bottom shifting beneath us in the wake associated with horrific killing of George Floyd as well as other people of color. A country’s very threatening that is fabric unravel.
Also through the 1969 season, the IU 10 were not alone in taking a stand. There were protests and walkouts by Ebony football players through the entire country, including during the University of Wyoming, Michigan State and elsewhere. Those were the occasions. Dissent and protest had been in the air. The status quo had been imperiled. Business as usual would no longer be acceptable to people who got the end that is short of stick. Then as it happens to be.
In Bloomington, the actions of the IU 10 left an indelible mark on the university. The players’ refusal to take part in the ultimate three games ruined an once-hopeful season, the Hoosiers losing all three games and falling far in short supply of time upforit dating for the Rose Bowl. More crucial, though, it created a distressing but awareness that is necessary all wasn’t well and equitable in your community of battle relations – in sports or elsewhere in the country. It might probably have fallen on deaf ears at the right time, but years later on, particularly 51 years later on, those voices of dissent nevertheless echo into the actions of today’s athletes.
The men who took a stand at Indiana paid a price that is significant their lives, from individual turmoil to lost possibilities to play within the NFL. Yes, there was no Rose Bowl for the Hoosiers that season — in reality, no Indiana group is back once again to Pasadena since ’68 — but for the IU 10, there was clearly no longer football. Perhaps Not that season, rather than again. Yet they say it would be done by them yet again.
“No regrets, none at all,” said Clarence Price, a senior defensive end for Indiana in 1969. “I stood up for the people on my group. All the others suffered just as much or maybe more if my brother is suffering, I’m suffering than I did (in the aftermath of the walkout), but the way I look at it. Our hearts had been within the right spot. I’d do it once again. I would personally.”
Charles Murphy, a senior protective tackle in 1969 and another person in the IU 10, recalls the moment obviously. The Hoosiers had simply finished a grueling exercise when he approached Pont with a demand. He knew Pont did not allow hair that is facial but still, he asked the top advisor if he could develop a mustache. Pont sharply declined and Murphy stepped away crestfallen. Maybe Not due to Pont’s refusal to allow him develop a mustache, but because of the insensitive remark the coach made as he responded: “Why? You want to cover up that top lip?”
Another time, Murphy asked a coach that is assistant he ended up beingn’t getting more playing time.