Willie Ray Smith left a legacy beyond football

Part II: Texas royalty turned to uncommon manMy segment on The Drive with Jack on sports radio in Lansing, Mich., on the influence of Willie Ray Smith-- Willie Ray Smith Sr. was one of the southern black high school coaches that laid the tracks to Michigan State coach Duffy Daugherty’s...

My Michigan State history letter to Mel Tucker

To Coach Mel Tucker:Welcome back to Michigan State.Your two seasons as a graduate assistant in the 1997 and 1998 seasons on Nick Saban's football staff was time for you to learn more about the school than we know about you upon your return 22 years later. So I'm wondering how much you learned...

Dan Dierdorf on Coryell and the Hall of Fame

The NFL largely remembers Don Coryell for his dynamic Air Coryell teams in San Diego. Dan Dierdorf begs to differ. “We saw him first in St. Louis,” said Dierdorf. Coryell’s innovative passing game with the old St. Louis Cardinals was sandwiched between equally novel periods throwing the ball at...

Forty four Underground Railroad legacy facts

--- Why do I write so much debunking the myths and fiction surrounding Bear Bryant and the 1970 USC-Alabam game? The answer is simple: History has failed to properly credit College Football Hall of Fame coach Duffy Daugherty and his Michigan State Underground Railroad teams for pioneering fully...

Underground Railroad travels sesquicentennial

A uniquely American sport celebrates its sesquicentennial this season. College football's growth over the 150 years since Rutgers beat Princeton on Nov. 6, 1869, quickly spread sea to sea and halfway across the Pacific Ocean to Hawaii.The game learned to adapt to the times, albeit sometimes slowly,...

No Inspector Renault moments around Izzo

Sportswriters are both romantics and cynics. That’s why Inspector Renault, a cynical character in Casablanca, a romantic movie, so often appears in sports stories.The latest example of Inspector Renault declaring he’s “shocked, shocked,” results from Christian Dawkins testifying in the FBI’s college...

Cassius Winston is bullish on legacy stocks

Cassius Winston’s legacy stock is up. Way up. His NBA prospects determine future financial stocks, but his pro career can only enhance his Michigan State legacy. That was secured once he announced on Friday his senior year return for another NCAA title shot. He has a chance to join a pantheon of...

Kenny Goins and his road to the Final Four

Tom Izzo enriches the Michigan State basketball program's history with season awards named for former players and coaches. It is one way the Basketball Hall of Fame coach connects the past to the present and into the future. Johnny Green, who led the Spartans to their first...

Comparing two record Raleigh scorers and eras

NOTE: Campbell's Chris Clemons scored 32 points in his final game as UNC-Greensboro beat the Camels 84-69 Tuesday night in the first round of the NIT. Clemons finished No. 3 on the career scoring list. So, unfortunately, no trip to Madison Square Garden.By Tom ShanahanChris Clemons’ last shot...

Elijah and Army seniors living The Life of Riley

A mere three years ago Army cornerback Elijah Riley graduated from high school and arrived at West Point, but the consecutive winning seasons his senior class has put together feels like a a three-decade accomplishment. That much time has passed since Army last strung together a winning streak...