With the Seattle Seahawks defeating the Denver Broncos 43-8 last night in Super Bowl XLVIII, it put the Seahawks in rare company.
First of all, they have won their first Super Bowl in franchise history. Secondly, head coach Pete Carroll became the third coach in NFL history to win a Super Bowl and a National Championship in college football. The only other two coaches to do that are Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer.
Finally, the greatest significance of the win is that Russell Wilson became the second African-American quarterback in the NFL history to win a Super Bowl. The first was Washington Redskins quarterback Doug Williams back in the eighties.
In a weird coincidence both quarterbacks defeated the Broncos in the Super Bowl. For Williams, it was Super Bowl XXII when he defeated the Denver Broncos 42-10 on January 31, 1988 at Jack Murphy Stadium in San Diego, California.
Williams would go on to win Super Bowl MVP throwing for 340 yards, four touchdowns and one interception. The Redskins in the second quarter of that game had a 35-point outburst which gave them the win. In that game, Williams took on John Elway which is a tough task. Elway is also one of the greatest quarterbacks to play this game.
Last night, Wilson took on Peyton Manning, a tough task in itself. Wilson threw for 206 yards and two touchdowns. It's a great thing to see happen this month especially since it is Black History Month. This win also knocks down the stereotype that a run-first, mobile quarterback can win a Super Bowl. I, myself, as an African-American male take pride in seeing this because it shows that times are progressing in our country.
It also shows that race in sports is not a factor still because many years ago it used to be an issue. In the NFL did you know the first African-American quarterback was Willie Thrower? And that was in 1953. He played at Michigan State and the Chicago Bears.
Or not many people know that in the first Sunday of the 1969 NFL season, James Harris became the first African-American pro quarterback to start on Opening Day and he faced tons of scrutiny.
Lastly, a lot of people don't know that Marlin Briscoe, who played for the Denver Broncos in 1968 became the first African-American starting quarterback in the AFL. That next season in 1969, Briscoe was traded to the Buffalo Bills and converted to a wide receiver.
All of these examples just show everyday, history is being rewritten as we saw last night in Super Bowl XLVIII.