We’ve come a long way since the days of minority segregation in sports. It has been 74 years since Jessie Owens won gold and Matthew Robinson won Silver in the 200-meter dash at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, right under the nose of Adolf Hitler. Matthew’s brother Jackie would break the color barrier in Major League Baseball 11 years later. Doug Williams was the first black quarterback to win a Superbowl when he played for the Washington Redskins, a traditionally white-led team even in the mid-1980s. In a majority of traditionally “white” sports and competitive events today, minorities playing hardly causes one to bat an eye. It is hardly true the other way around, however.
It seems that the winners of the first ever Sprite Step Off competition will have to share their first-place trophy. Coca-Cola made the decision on March 1st after reviewing hundreds of comments when a white sorority from the University of Arkansas won the competition at the end of February. Citing a “scoring discrepancy” Coca-Cola (the major sponsor via its Sprite brand) awarded Alpha Kappa Alpha, a team from Indiana University, the first-place tie.
Message boards were filled with vitriolic comments after the ladies from Arkansas won, much of it racially charged. Read the rest of this entry »