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The African-American Athlete

Rickey L. Hampton Sr.

Colorful Ducks Add A Little More Color To Coaching Ranks

Oregon's hiring of Willie Taggart as its head football coach is significant in regards of diversity in the FBS coaching ranks.

The Oregon Ducks football team is known for their colorful uniforms, with literally dozens of dazzlings displays of rush colors in recent years. Now, the Ducks will have a little more color on the sidelines, too.  Oregon has named former  University of South Florida coach Willie Taggart as the university's head football coach.

Taggart replaces Mark Helfrich, who was fired following a 4-8 season. The hiring of Taggart is  significant in regards to diversity in college coaching. There were only 12 black coaches out of the 120 coaches at FBS programs in 2016, down from 17 in 2011. Recently, Texas fired head coach Charlie Strong after three seasons. The opportunities for black coaches to lead power conference programs simply don't come often. For more on the hiring of Willie Taggart click here.

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Warriors' Celebration Of Klay's 60 Point Night Is A Warning To Opponents

Klay Thompson's 60 points in 29 minutes against the Pacers is the latest example of why he is one of the greatest shooters in the history of the NBA.

Golden State's Klay Thompson had one of those nights on Monday against the Indiana Pacers.  The 6-foot-7 shooting guard from  Washington State poured in a career-high 60 points in just 29 minutes of play in the Warriors' 142-106 win over the Indiana Pacers.

What is so impressive about Thompson's performance is just how efficient it was. Thompson was 21-33 shooting, including 8 of 14 from the 3-point line. In addition, he knocked down 10 of 11 free throws. Not only that, he was doing everything in the flow of the offense, and when he got going, teammates started looking for him.

Checkout the video link below as BBALLBREAKDOWN explains how Thompson was able to put together a career night. In the second video link I want you to watch the reaction of the Thompson's Warrior teammates, including Steph Curry. They were celebrating Thompson's outburst, which is a good thing for the Warriors, and a dangerous thing for the rest of the league.

When you have a team that plays for each other, and celebrates each other, and has the great talent the Warriors have, they are going to be very difficult to beat.


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Discipline And Dedication Have Sabien Tinson On A Fast Track To Olympics

Sabien Tinson is already one of the country's best Inline Skaters even though he is only 15-years-old.

Sabien Tinson is not your average 15-year-old. Not many 15-year-olds start their day at 5 a.m., and typically doesn’t end until 11 p.m. That's a long day for anyone, especially someone Sabien's age. Of course, when you are working out two or three times a day, going to high school (where you are an honor roll student), and traveling all over the world, your schedule is going to be busy.

Sabien ,  one of the country's premier young athletes in the sport of Inline Speed Skating, would have it no other way. He is mature enough to understand the sacrifices he is putting in now are all part of his goal of becoming an Olympic champion. The Albany, Ga., native's master plan  is to make the transition from Inline skating to Olympic Speed Skating (in  either Short or Long Track) and compete in the 2022 Winter Olympics in Bejing, China.

It takes an extraordinary amount of dedication and discipline to work towards a goal literally years away. Sabien, a thoughtful,  mature young man, has the mindset to handle it.

"It's a lot of hard work, and I have to sacrifice a lot of things, but it is worth it." said Tinson, a three-time National Champion. "I don't get a chance to go parties, hang out at the mall, or go to movies. But that's OK because I am doing what I love, and working towards my dream. I know in order for me to accomplish my goals, I have to work to get better every day."

Last summer Sabien earned a spot on the 2016 USA Jr. World Team (which he was the youngest member). The team traveled to Nanjing, China to participate in the World Championships.

His spartan work ethic, and the support of his parents, Stephanie and Scott, have played a large part of Sabien's success.

"I wouldn't be able to do any of this without the love and support of my parents," he said. 

Sabien Tinson

Check out this impressive list of Sabien's accomplishments. Also watch the video of him in action at the end of the story.

• 2013 Indoor National Champion Elementary Boy with several records

• 2013 Outdoor National Champion Elementary Boy with several records

• 2014 Regional Champion Freshman Boy and overall Champion

• 2014 Indoor National Champion Freshman Boy with several records

• 2014 Outdoor National Champion Freshman Boy with several records

• 2014 Pan American Speed Club Championships Freshman Boys

• 2015 Indoor National Champion Freshman Boy with several records

• 2015 Outdoor National Champion Freshman Boys with several records

• 2015 Pan American Speed Club Championships Freshman Boys

• 2016 300M Outdoor National Champion

• 2016 America’s Cup Champion Junior Men

• 2016 Member of the U.S.A World Team, Second Sprinter

• 2016 Member of the NSC (Professional National Speedskating Circuit)

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