Service Alert

All library services will be closed on Wednesday, June 19th in observance of Juneteenth. Early voting will still be available at Riverfront Library and Will Library from 9am-5pm.

Amazing Sports Stories: The Black 14

Amazing Sport Stories: The Black 14 is about the Black 14 who were African American football players that protested against racism they experienced at Brigham Young University (BYU). The host is B.A. Parker, the co-host of Code Switch. In the four episodes about the Black 14, you learn about why the football players planned a protest and what repercussions they faced. Parker interviews members of the Black 14 and they describe their personal experiences during this time period. These episodes are expertly crafted and incredibly interesting.

The Black 14 were fourteen African American football players that played at the University of Wyoming. When playing against BYU, players experienced dirty tactics by the opposing football team and they were routinely jeered with racist taunts. When games at BYU ended, sprinklers were turned on before they had a chance to leave the field. On top of all this mistreatment, they were upset that African Americans were barred from priesthood by the Latter Day Saints.

In response to this prejudice, these players brainstormed a protest ahead of their game against BYU on October 18, 1969. On the Friday before the game, they met with their coach to discuss ways they could protest. They attended the meeting wearing black armbands and they were dismissed from the team without having a chance to speak. The players were understandably shocked and confused by their dismissal. That simply an armband could trigger their removal from the team was unbelievable. To hear their reactions to this is heartbreaking. 

I recommend you listen to Amazing Sport Stories: The Black 14 to hear the full story of what members of the Black 14 experienced during this turbulent period of history. Several of them were interviewed for this podcast and they share their memories from that time period. All of their stories are profound!

To learn about the Black 14 other than listening to Amazing Sport Stories, I recommend visiting the Wyoming Historical Society website


Michael Walsh is an Adult Services Librarian at the Will Library. He is currently reading The Women by Kristin Hannah.


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