Who’s Jack Trice?
Have you ever heard of Jack Trice? I hadn’t until last weekend. The story is disgusting and amazing at the same time. I was listening to the Iowa State/Kansas State football game on Saturday (why wouldn’t I?) As the ISU radio broadcaster said, “live from Jack Trice Stadium….” I wondered who this “Jack Trice” was that had a stadium named after him. I was SHOCKED to learn his story:
Johnny "Jack" Trice (1902 – October 8, 1923) was a football player who became the first African-American athlete from Iowa State University). Trice died due to injuries suffered during a college football game against the University of Minnesota on October 6, 1923.
On October 6, 1923, Trice and his Iowa State College teammates played against the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minnesota. On the night of the game, Trice had to stay at a different Minneapolis hotel from his teammates.
During the second play of the game, Trice's collarbone was broken. Trice insisted he was all right and returned to the game. In the third quarter, while attempting to tackle a University of Minnesota ball carrier by throwing a roll block, Trice was trampled by three Minnesota players. Although he claimed to be fine, Trice was removed from the game and sent to a Minneapolis hospital. The doctors declared him fit to travel and he returned by train to Ames with his teammates.
On October 8, 1923, Trice died from hemorrhaged lungs andinternal bleeding as a result of the injuries sustained during the game.
Trice's funeral was held at the Iowa State College's central campus in Ames on October 16, 1923, with 4,000 students and faculty members in attendance.
As a result of his death, ISU did not renew their contract to play against Minnesota after the 1924 game. They would not play again until 1989.