Role of Race in Winning Shed Light on the Need for Integration - Higher Education: Watch any major college sporting event these days, and you’re almost guaranteed to see at least one African-American face competing, if not a majority. It’s so commonplace these days, no one even thinks about it anymore. But that wasn’t always the case.
Can you imagine Auburn beating Oregon in the BCS Title game in 2010 without Cam Newton under center? Or John Calipari winning a championship with no Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrest or any other player you can name from last season’s championship crew. Or what would Dean Smith’s legacy look like without players like Phil Ford, James Worthy and Michael Jordan?
For much of the 20th century, colleges from the Southwest to the Mid-Atlantic competed in an athletic world that was devoid of any diversity. That list includes perennial powerhouse programs Alabama and Florida of the Southeastern Conference and Atlantic Coast Conference schools from South Carolina to Maryland.