When Georgia Tech came to Michigan for a football game on Oct. 20, 1934, the visiting Yellow Jackets said they would refuse to play the game unless Michigan benched Willis Ward, an amazing student-athlete who was the lone African-American on the team. U-M eventually agreed to keep Ward off the field and out of the stadium, making it the only time in school history that a player was benched because of his race.
This year, Michigan has a home game against Michigan State on Oct. 20 - on the 78th anniversary of the Georgia Tech game. This year is also the 100th anniversary of Willis Ward's birth.
Since Willis Ward was banned from Michigan Stadium on Oct. 20, it's fitting that he be welcomed back to Michigan Stadium on Oct. 20.
We urge the University of Michigan to honor Willis Ward at the Michigan-MSU football game on Oct. 20, 2012.