In honor of Black History Month, Gopher Athletics is celebrating those who made us great. Throughout February, GopherSports.com will share short interviews with African-American alumni from almost every Gopher program. In these interviews, former student-athletes reflect on their time at the U of M, provide advice to current Gophers and share what Black History Month means to them personally.
Graduation Year: 1971 and '73
Hometown: West Warwick, R.I.
What is it you miss most about the University?
I loved the overall environment and atmosphere of the University and its neighborhoods. The University provided the opportunity to grow and mature. I also was very grateful to have a built-in family via my teammates. I was fortunate to make lifelong friends. In addition, making new friends in class and in the dormitory was exciting, and helped me to learn so much about life outside of the Twin Cities. I miss the energy and vibrancy of campus life.
If you could give the current student-athletes any piece of advice, what would it be?
To enjoy all the experiences that the University has to offer. As a student-athlete, so much of your time and focus has to be on your sport and that's understandable. However, during off-season, explore the offerings of the University, classes, plays/theater, clubs, fraternities/sororities, etc. Participate in departmental affairs if interested. Final piece of advice would be to focus on study skills and time management, and work as hard in the classroom as you do on the field.
Please share your favorite university or athletic event you've attended since you graduated and what made it so special to you?
Being invited to come back for the opening of TCF Bank Stadium, and running the field with other football alumni. It was great having football back on campus and seeing all the new improvements to the stadium. I had the privilege of playing in Memorial Stadium, and it was great to stand on the sidelines with other great alumni.
What are you grateful for?
My family, and the educational opportunities the University provided. I was well prepared for my career, having earned two degrees from the University. I am grateful for the friends and teammates that remain wonderful friends to this day. I am grateful for the opportunity to have traveled around the country with the football team. I am also grateful to have been able to spend time in the Twin Cities, a very cosmopolitan environment.
What does Black History Month mean to you?
BHM is an occasion to highlight the contributions of persons of color in the building of and development of the United States and the world. It is an opportune time to expose some of the history and achievements of persons of color that has been hidden, revised, and/or obliterated. My only criticism of BHM is that it is the shortest month of the year.
What occupies your time now?
I retired from Brown University in 2013 and remain available to my students at each of the Universities that I taught and served in administration as a consultant. I also participate in local community activities. I remarried in 2013 and my wife and I travel. I also do a lot of pleasure reading, mainly detective and medical investigation fiction.
Please visit Black History Month Central on Gophersports.com to see all the profiles.
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