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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (April 15, 1997)
Fifty years ago today, Jackie
Robinson shattered a nationwide
barrier and changed the face of
sports forever. Robinson died 25
years later, but his message lives on
today, carried by thousands of ath
letes — black and white — at ev
ery level of competition.
m ms rirsi game as a orooKiyn
Dodger on April 15, 1947,
Robinson went hitless in three at
bats. He scored the winning run in
a 5-3 Dodger win over the Boston
Braves and a run much bigger in
an American triumph.
As the first black to penetrate
baseball’s color barrier, Robinson
set an amazing precedent. Many
athletes today fail to recognize
Robinson’s significance, and al
though the world of sports has taken
great strides since 1947, it still has
a long way to go.
“As time goes on, our memoirs
of history have shrunk,” said Ron
Brown, receivers coach for the Ne
braska football team. “We don’t go
back as far as we need with as much
detail as we need to. There are
things that are forgotten, and we
take things for granted.”
Brown grew up in a poor fam
ily and fought adversity to gradu
ate from the prestigious Brown
University in 1979. Since joining
the Husker staff 10 years ago, he’s
passed over several offers to leave
Lincoln, last year turning down a
coaching position with the Tampa
TT* __1 _-_
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represent everything that’s right
about spots and society, much like
the attitude Robinson carried 50
“Around hoe, there is no color,”
Nebraska I-back Jay Sims said,
“even though guys have their dif
ferences. This anniversary reminds
us how far we’ve come, but it also
reminds us how far we have to go.”
Individuals like Pat Tyrance, a
future orthopedic surgeon, and Ti
ger Woods, a future sports legend,
show us anything is possible.
Tyrance, a forma NU linebacker
who spoke at the Nebraska Student
Athlete Academic Awards Banquet
Sunday night, will receive a doc
torate and master’s degree from
Harvard University in June.
Woods shattered another barrier
on Sunday, winning golf’s most pres
tigious tournament in Augusta, Ga.,
the same state in which Robinson
was bom on Jan. 31,1919.
“When Tiga Woods does what
he does,” Brown said, “it sends an
inspiring message, and it should not
be relegated to one particular race.
It should transcend into all races.”
Someday it will, when every
thing for which Robinson stood 50
years ago finally becomes a reality.
Sherman Is a senior news-edi
torial major and a Daily Nebras
kan senior reporter.
Sam linebacker spot
sees battle between
By Andrew Strnad
Brian Shaw is following the path
of many Nebraska football players.
After waiting to prove himself for
a season, Shaw has entered this spring
as NU’s top Sam linebacker and is us
ing this chance to stake a claim to a
possible starting spot come fall prac
Thingsjiave been good so far in the
sophomore’s attempt to fill the spot va
cated by team tackle leader Jamel Wil
Shaw, a 6-root, 215-pounder from
Deweese, redshirted as a walk-on dur
ing the 1995 season, and saw limited
playing time a year ago totaling 22
tackles in playing all 13 games for the
This spring Shaw is at the top of
the depth chart, ahead of fellow sopho
more Tony Ortiz, which makes this
spring that much more important.
“Obviously we both want the start
ing job, but at die same time we’re push
ing each other in practice,” Shaw said.
NU Linebacker Coach Craig Bohl
said Shaw’s competitiveness and fire
has impressed Bohl this spring, and
that is one reason Shaw is penciled in
to start in the fall.
“Brian’s a tough kid,” Bohl said. “He
flies to the ball and can pressure the
quarterback at the same time as well.”
Shaw showed his tenacity during
Saturday’s scrimmage when he forced
and recovered a fumble on his last play
of the afternoon.
Shaw was an all-state running back
for Sandy Creek High School, where he
rushed few more than 5,000 yards, in
cluding 2,121 yards his senior season.
Being a former back, Shaw said, has
given him the tools to be a run stopper.
*1 try to anticipate the sort of deci
sions that a running back makes and
just react to the ball,” he said.
Last spring, Shaw came into spring
ball having to learn everything about
his new position from scratch. This
year, with a full regular season and
spring under his belt, Shaw said, he
Please see SHAW on 8
“I was happy about that, especially
since it was my last play,” Shaw said.
“I just penetrated through the line and
hunted down the ball carrier just like
I’m supposedto.” .
In fact, it’s die time that Shaw spent
on the offensive side of the ball in high
school that has helped him now.
BRIAN SHAW (right) stands with Eric Johnson, No. 1, Chad Itottle and Russell Froelich at practice Monday. Shaw is
Nil* top returning Sam linebacker.
From Staff Reports
The Nebraska baseball team at
tempts to get back on the winning track
today when it plays host to Hastings
College at Buck Beltzer Field at 2:30
NU and the Broncos
scheduled to play just one
two will now play a
The Comhuskers (18-22 overall
and 4-11 in the Big 12 Conference)
returned home from College Station,
Texas, on Monday after dropping
] three straight to Texas A&M. NU has
s lost seven of its last 10 games after
winning eight consecutive contests.
The Huskers need to regroupbe
fore a five-game road trip which be
gins Friday at Oklahoma. Nebraska
plays three of those five games at
OU this weekend. The Sooners beat
the Huskers three times last season.
Nebraska travels to league-leader
Texas Tech next for games on April
22 and 23 before returning to Lincoln
to play Oklahoma State. NU begins a
three-game homestand on April 25.
In other Big 12 baseball news,
Baylor outfielder John Topolski and
Oklahoma right-handed pitcher Kevin
Olsen were named the league’s play
ers of the week.
Topolski went 14 for 24 at the plate
for the Bears and Olsen gave up one
run and five hits in a 10-1 win over
Reive hangs tough
By Gregg Madsen
For all its length, life is essen
tially defined by individual mo
life was radi
one of those
p tat the NCA/ir
his head during
glln his parallel
I .. bars practice
tat up and took a
he noticed a tin
his arms anH
said. “I gotiip right away, and it was
almost like I had got electrocuted.”
The sophomore Cornhusker
gymnast separated his fifth cervi
cal vertebraon the fall, and surgery
was performed the next morning.
A week and two days later, de
spite the brace and constant doses of
pain pills, Reive doesn’t know if he’ll
ever compete in gymnastics again.
But for Reive, that’s not a problem.
He’s just thankful to be alive.
“The doctors told me they didn’t
know how I managed to walk away
from it,” Reive said. “A half-inch
higher or a half-inch lower and I
wouldn’t be walking.” •§, ^
Reive said Che s' Jg
months in a brace, W*'
won’t be healed for eignt montiis.
The full extent of the injury will
not be known until the bones com
pletely Intel, 6ut Reive fefft wot- -«
ried about whefln»r ** *
f^Rtave hid' My ~ "
of the third-ranked husicers topau
arounders in 1997: Against Penn
State on March 16, he had the high
est score of the season for die team
with a 57.725 on the all-around.
He said he wouldn't rule out thbt*
possibility of competing again. But -
for now, he said ms focus is on his
*1 never want to go through that
kind of pain again,” Rove* said.
NU Coach Francis Alkn said he
is optimistic that Reive can do gym
“It depends on JD. from here on
out,” Allot said, “ft depends on how
he reacts and how die injury heads.”
Reive, who has competed in
gymnastics since age 3, said the
heartbreak of the injury is out
weighed by the joy of being alive.
“It’s hard to be angry when I’m
still here,” he said. ‘‘Most people
would be in a wheelchair. But I feel
very fortunate that I’ll at least be
able to walk again.”
to play CU
Bt Mike Kluck
• * > _
Nebraska’s stop-and-go softball
season will get die gfoen light today
— Mother Nature permitting.
The Comhuskers (16-16 overall
and 3-3 in die Big 12 Conference)
travel to Omaha to pfiiy Creighton in
a doubleheader that begins* at 6 p.m.
at die CU Sports Complex.
nu swept ^reignion m a uouoie
header April 3 at the NU Softball Com
plex winning 10-1 and 4-2. But in the
12 days since that game, the Huskers
have played only two games — a
doubleheader against Texas Tech on
Sunday in Iowa. ~ 4 V
“We looked a little rusty against
Texas Tech,” NU Coach Rhonda
Revelle said. “But lye can’t let that
bother us, we just have to go out and
After having played 12 games in a
period of nine days over spring break,
the Huskers have played just four
times — two games each against
Creighton and Texas Tech — since 1
NU’s game against Iowa State on ,
April 5 was postponed after the Husk
ers jumped out to an 8-0 lead after the
first two innings. Those games were
rescheduled for last Thursday, but poor
Please see JAYS on 8
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