Text: H.Res.298 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (07/11/2013)


113th CONGRESS
1st Session
H. RES. 298

Congratulating the 1963 men’s basketball team of Loyola University Chicago on its induction into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame and the 50th anniversary of the team’s Division I National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball championship.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
July 11, 2013

Mr. Quigley (for himself, Ms. Schakowsky, Mrs. Bustos, Mr. Danny K. Davis of Illinois, Ms. Duckworth, Mr. Gutiérrez, Ms. Kelly of Illinois, and Mr. Schneider) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Education and the Workforce


RESOLUTION

Congratulating the 1963 men’s basketball team of Loyola University Chicago on its induction into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame and the 50th anniversary of the team’s Division I National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball championship.

Whereas in 1963, Coach George Ireland led the men’s basketball team of Loyola University Chicago “Ramblers” to the Division I National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) men’s basketball championship;

Whereas the Ramblers lost only 2 games during the 1962 to 1963 season and led the Nation in scoring with an average of 91.8 points scored per game;

Whereas Coach Ireland and the Loyola University men’s basketball teams of the early 1960s are considered by many to be responsible for ushering in a new era of racial equality in the sport by shattering major racial barriers in NCAA men’s basketball;

Whereas, in 1963, the Ramblers shocked the Nation and changed college basketball forever by starting 4 African-American players in the NCAA tournament, as well as the championship game;

Whereas it is difficult to appreciate what Coach Ireland and his team went through, starting in 1961, in breaking what had been a longstanding “gentleman’s agreement” to play not more than 3 African-American players;

Whereas during the 1962 to 1963 season, Coach Ireland started 4 African-American players in every game, and, in December 1962, the Ramblers became the first team in NCAA Division I history to have an all-African-American lineup in a game against the University of Wyoming;

Whereas despite their success during the 1962 to 1963 season, the players and Coach Ireland endured terrible bigotry, including racial taunts and abuse, and received countless pieces of hate mail from the Ku Klux Klan and other racist individuals, and all the while Coach Ireland tried to shield his team in every way possible;

Whereas before advancing to the championship round, the Ramblers participated in the NCAA Midwest regional semifinal against the Mississippi State Maroons (now called the Bulldogs), a landmark game often referred to half a century later as the “Game of Change”;

Whereas determined to play in the regional semifinal, the Mississippi State Maroons sneaked out of Mississippi to avoid an injunction, and the integrated Ramblers and the all-White Mississippi State Maroons met on the basketball court at Michigan State University on March 15, 1963;

Whereas with police surrounding the sports complex in East Lansing, Michigan, the Ramblers went on to defeat the Mississippi State Maroons by a score of 61 to 51 in the regional semifinal, a game that changed race relations on the basketball court forever and was selected by NCAA in 2006 as one of the 25 defining moments in the first 100 years of the organization;

Whereas the Ramblers went on to win games against the University of Illinois and Duke University before defeating the 2-time defending NCAA champion University of Cincinnati in overtime by a score of 60 to 58, the crowning achievement in Loyola University Chicago’s nearly decade-long struggle with racial inequality in men’s college basketball, highlighted by the tumultuous events of the 1963 NCAA tournament;

Whereas the Ramblers’ 1963 NCAA title was historic not only for the racial makeup of the Ramblers, but also because the University of Cincinnati had started 3 African-American players, making 7 of the 10 starters in the 1963 NCAA championship game African-American;

Whereas the City of Chicago has many storied sports teams, but the Ramblers basketball team of 1963 and Coach Ireland hold an exalted place because they are the only NCAA Division I Illinois basketball team to win a national championship and because they paved the way for the long overdue integration of races in college basketball before the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964;

Whereas all 5 starting players from the national championship game graduated from Loyola University with a degree, and several went on to earn advanced degrees in law and business;

Whereas the journey of the Ramblers is not just the story of an underdog team overcoming great odds to beat the favored team from the University of Cincinnati, a much larger basketball program that held the number 1 ranking and had won the previous 2 national championships;

Whereas the real significance of Coach Ireland and the Ramblers is the lasting impact of their bravery in breaking the racial barrier in college basketball that had been allowed to prevail for decades; and

Whereas the 2013 Hall of Fame induction season will mark the 50th anniversary of the 1963 Ramblers’ basketball championship, making the 1963 Ramblers the first whole team ever to be honored in the Hall of Fame: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

(1) congratulates Coach George Ireland and the 1963 Loyola University Chicago men’s basketball championship team on their induction into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame; and

(2) honors the 50th anniversary of the historic Division I National Collegiate Athletic Association championship of the Loyola University Chicago men’s basketball team and the profound athletic and civil rights achievements of the 1963 team.