Presidential Playing Field

On September 22, 2010, in I Played NAIA, by Angela

NAIA Sports Information Intern Adam Samson spent the summer rooting through historical records in the national office. This is one story from his summer adventures on the mezzanine level of the national office.

It is quite cliché, but you learn something new every day. First day on the job and I jumped right in. I began with the historical archives, organizing and preserving past statistics, box scores, press releases and photos. Sorting through a box of old photos, many of which were track and field, bowling, and gymnastics photos, I came across the lone football photo of the bunch, and it was the one that particularly caught my eye.

No. 12 in the photo looked familiar, but I couldn’t put a name to the face. Turning the photo over, I hoped that the photo had identification. Only one of the five players was identified. No. 12 Richard Nixon.

Yes, that Richard Nixon. The 37th President of the United States from 1969-1974. Nixon attended Whittier College in Whittier, Calif., playing on the gridiron before graduating and moving on to Duke Law School. Whittier College was an NAIA institution up until 1979, when it then transitioned to NCAA Division III athletics competition.

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