Wednesday, September 1st, 2010 | Iowa History Journal
With football season kicking off all across the state of Iowa and the nation, now is the perfect time to revisit the story of one of the greatest football players in the history of our state. Johnny Bright played his first game at Drake University in the fall of 1949 – and over the next three years blazed a trail that is simply amazing.
Bright led the entire nation in total offense as a sophomore, as a junior, and was leading the nation as a senior when he suffered one of the most reprehensible occurrences in the history of college sports. Bright and the Bulldogs took a 6-0 record into Stillwater, Oklahoma, on October 20, 1951, to meet the Oklahoma A&M Aggies. What happened that day has been a dark spot ever since.
Bright was badly injured and missed two of the next three games but still finished fifth in the Heisman Trophy balloting that year. He went on to a tremendous career in the Canadian Football League and eventually became a highly regarded educator in Edmonton, Canada.
This issue of Iowa History Journal offers the compelling story of Johnny Bright along with some fabulous pictures. You won’t want to miss it.
Also included in this issue:
- the third and final part of the John Wayne – Winterset saga
- a first-hand account of what it was like to be a WWII bride in Iowa
- threshing memories
- the 100th year anniversary of the National Cattle Congress in Waterloo
- a fascinating account of the Underground Railroad in Grinnell in 1859-60
- columns by our regulars – Arvid Huisman and John McNeer
- how the tiny town of Britt has become a hobo haven
- …and much more
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