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Sports Watching and Wondering

African American news from Pasadena - Sports - Shootouts at the Rose Bowl and in CarolinaSHOOTOUT AT THE ROSE BOWL CORRAL . . .

This game was not played in Tombstone, but it could have been. Two lean, mean gunslingers and their teammates met in the center of the field to decide who would get the BCS Championship Trophy. Each of them was strong, fast, and determined. Neither of them intended to yield. This was a case of a do or die.

Approaching from one direction was Jameis Winston, the FSU unbeaten Quarterback, who was recently awarded the Heisman Trophy. He appeared to be confident, but not cocky. He knew that there could be trouble ahead. He was approached by Nick Marshall, his celebrated counterpart from Auburn University. A tough competitor, if there ever was one.

The Rose Bowl setting was perfect, and the weather was ideal. Thousands of fans had traveled to Pasadena from Alabama and Florida. These were the true believers, and each contingent was absolutely certain that their team would win. To them, losing was not an option. However, in their heart of hearts, each of them knew that since only one team could win, the other had to lose. As former coach and current television personality Herm Edwards often says, "That is why they play the game."

Initially, things did not go well for Winston and the Seminoles. Maybe it was just nerves, or maybe they were finally facing a better team. Winston started the game poorly, and for the first time this season, his team was behind at the half. A major upset was clearly in the making. However, almost as if it was scripted, he recovered and threw a touchdown winning pass with just seconds remaining in the game. This contest was a masterpiece, and everyone involved in it can be justifiably proud.

I think that it is worth noting that both of the quarterbacks in this game were African-Americans. It was just a few years ago when Educators, Psychiatrists, Soothsayers, Fortune Tellers, Card Sharks, Manicurists, Medicine Men, and Archaeologists were gently explaining to us that African-Americans simply did not have the intelligence, leadership qualities, and other "necessities" that were required to have success at this position. They wrote these opinions, and they published them. Many people believed them, but thankfully, not everyone.


The dust has barely settled in Pasadena and Colin Kapernick and Cam Newton and their teams will be facing each other in the second round of the NFL Playoffs. Kapernick had to engineer a come from behind victory over the determined Green Bay Packers on the frozen turf at Lambeau Field. How cold was it? You really do not want to know, and most of us who live in sunny Southern California feel sorry for the athletes who have to play under those conditions. We are also puzzled that anyone would spend four hours in those freezing temperatures in order to watch a game. The people in Green Bay do this, and they seem to be very happy doing so. Maybe, they do not know about television. By the way, both Newton and Kapernick are African-Americans.

[You may contact John Randolph Rogers at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .]



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