SIDELINE OBSERVATIONS: Remember athletes who served for our freedoms

Published: Tuesday, July 1, 2014 at 07:42 PM.

Friday, we celebrate our nation’s 238th birthday — and what a 238 years it has been.

I studied communications, but also took as many history electives as I could in college for love of the subject.

One of my favorite classes was History of American Sports. Yes, I made an A in the class. And no, the class wasn’t all about baseball, football and basketball; but there was a healthy dose of those sports, too.

Long before Babe Ruth hit his first home run for the Boston Red Sox, or his last home run for the Boston Braves, or Knute Rockne challenged Notre Dame's football team to win one for the Gipper, sports dominated America's landscape.

Many of those sports — such as hunting and horseback riding — were used in everyday life. We Americans have always wanted to test our skills against the best to see how we measure up.

Before Abraham Lincoln became our nation’s 16th president, he was one of the best wrestlers in the Midwest. Abe wasn’t bad at splitting logs, either.

Many of our presidents were college athletes.

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