College GameDay had an awesome segment Saturday about the famous 1970 football game between USC and Alabama.
The Trojans were the first integrated team to play at Alabama when they traveled to Tuscaloosa in 1970. Bear Bryan was already the most powerful coach in college sports, but he knew his team had no shot against the athletes USC had. (RELATED: David Hookstead Is The True King In The North When It Comes To College Football)
We look back on USC’s historic win over Alabama 50 years ago, a game that for many represented the last gasp of segregation in major college football.
— College GameDay (@CollegeGameDay) September 12, 2020
It’s truly incredible how much that 1970 game changed things at Alabama. The fans, who are faithful to the highest degree, watched USC tear the Crimson Tide apart with their athletes.
A former Bear Bryant assistant is famously reported to have said that USC star “Sam Cunningham did more to integrate Alabama in 60 minutes than Martin Luther King did in 20 years.”
Who knows how true that is or isn’t, but there’s no doubt Alabama realized they couldn’t win at an elite level if they remained a segregated team.
Finally, if you haven’t read “Chasing the Bear: How Bear Bryant and Nick Saban Made Alabama the Greatest College Football Program of All Time” by Lars Anderson, I’d suggest that you do. It’s one of the best books about sports that I’ve ever read, and dives into the issue even more.
It’s worth your time for sure.