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Michigan State plans to honor 1960s football teams with statue

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MSU led college football integration in the 1960s.

Syndication: Lansing Lansing State Journal file photo

On Monday’s episode of “The Drive with Jack,” show, Michigan State athletic director Alan Haller revealed the university’s plan to honor Duffy Daugherty’s 1960s teams that helped integrate college football with a statue.

Daugherty and Michigan State are widely regarded as the coach and institution that helped integrate college football. The Spartans won national championships in 1965 and 1966.

The statue will commemorate the iconic photo of Daugherty and five of Michigan State’s star Black student-athletes. Those athletes were Bubba Smith, Clinton Jones, Bob Apisa, Gene Washington and George Webster. Each of those players were All-Americans in 1966 and all of them are in the MSU Athletics Hall of Fame.

In 1966, Michigan State head football coach Duffy Daugherty stands with All-American players Clinton Jones, Bob Apsia, Bubba Smith, Gene Washington and George Webster.
Courtesy of Michigan State Athletics

“As we look at the renovation of the football building, one of the things that are included in the plans is we’re going to put a statue out front of the new football complex of the iconic picture of Duffy (Daugherty) and the five athletes,” Haller said on the show. “That’ll be the first thing you see as you go into the building, so the history of who came and what came before us is going to be really, really important as we move forward.”

In Tom Shanahan’s piece, he has more background information and detail on the integration of MSU in the 1960s.

You can also listen to the full episode of Haller’s appearance on “The Drive With Jack” show below. Haller mentions the statue around the 8:50 mark.