Happy birthday, Jackie Robinson

In case you haven’t seen this yet, here’s the Google Doodle commemorating Jackie Robinson’s 94th birthday. In addition to breaking baseball’s racial barriers, he lettered in baseball, basketball, track at UCLA, and was the last African American to lead the football team in passing until Brett Hundley.

You can also click through to the trailer for the upcoming biopic “42″, which anachronistically features Jay-Z as the backing soundtrack.

Also, an excerpt from a 1987 Sports Illustrated article, in which former teammate Carl Erskine walks through a Robinson exhibit almost 15 years after the man died of a heart attack at age 53.

As Erskine watches Rachel walk away, he says, “What shocked me more than Jack’s death was the time a couple of years earlier when someone asked him to play golf. He said he couldn’t because he couldn’t see the ball. It affected me deeply how such a man’s health had deteriorated so much. The two strongest men on the Dodgers, Jack and Gil Hodges, died so young. I’m forever saddened their lives were so short.”

And finally, UCLA alum and Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo with a comment to Yahoo! Sports in light Chris Culliver’s recent remarks against having a gay teammate:

Ayanbadejo figures the reaction will be so positive for that first openly gay player that the entire issue will spin on a dime.

“People would be writing books about it and making movies and it would turn into such an awesome story. [We could] really call it our Jackie Robinson athlete,” he said.

“We know that he’s out there, we’re just waiting for him to embrace it and everybody to embrace him,” Ayanbadejo added.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/sakatalaw Cliff Sakata

    Thanks Jack. Only the greatest Bruin of all time could bring some light after that horrible loss.