The Christian Science Monitor

Racial equity and the pandemic: How a collegiate football player is tackling both

Dallas Hobbs pauses outside the Washington State University football stadium in Pullman on Oct. 20, 2020. A defensive lineman for WSU, Mr. Hobbs has worked with other athletes in the Pac-12, which starts its delayed season Nov. 7, to improve COVID-19 safety measures for players. Source: Ann Scott Tyson/The Christian Science Monitor

Washington State University defensive lineman Dallas Hobbs walks through a vast but largely deserted campus athletic complex in Pullman, a quiet college town surrounded by golden fields of freshly cut spring wheat, on his day off from the Cougars’ football practice.

“Hey, coach!” he greets WSU head football coach Nick Rolovich in passing. Then he steps into the empty WSU stadium and strides onto the turf at center field, recalling the night three years ago his team defeated the University of Southern California (USC) Trojans in overtime, and elated fans rushed the field.

“It was pretty exciting,” recalls Mr. Hobbs, then a freshman, even though that celebration cost his team “a big fine.”

Back then, by his own account, Mr. Hobbs’ life

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