Students get to know ‘Ghost’

Local News

UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS (WCIA) — A National Football League historian was on campus Thursday to teach students the backstory of the “Galloping Ghost.”

Chris Willis has been with the NFL for 25 years, but he wrote his book on Illinois’ Red Grange this year. He spoke at the 16th Annual Sapora Symposium about his book and Grange’s legacy.

“It’s a great chance for a younger generation to learn about Red’s accomplishments,” says Willis.

More than 350 students were at Memorial Stadium for the symposium. It is a two-day event where they are learning about sports’ impact on culture in the United States. Willis was the featured speaker for Thursday. He says Grange’s past proves to students they can do anything.

“He was a humble superstar from Wheaton, Illinois,” says Willis. “[It’s great] to be able to achieve superstar status and still be humble and be a good role model. Hearing his stories, hopefully readers can gain that sort of insight.”

Willis added part of the reason he wrote the book was for the 150th College Football Anniversary and 100th NFL Anniversary.

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