The 1971 Walkout and call for change
On February 3, 1971, four African-American football players, Larry Dibbles, Hodges Mitchell, Raymond Rhodes, and Ervin Garnett, abruptly quit the football team, protesting changes to the athletic dress code they felt targeted Black athletes. Their walkout was the catalyst for a meeting of African-American students to discuss a campus culture they felt excluded them and the underlying racism of the administration and athletic department.
Student leaders Frank Callaway, Jennifer Giddings, and Eddie Miles joined Dibbles at a press conference on February 4 calling for an increase in recruitment of Black students and faculty, a Black Studies program, and a Black campus minister and counselor at TCU. The students also addressed specific circumstances when African-American students had been treated unfairly.
Addressing the need for a Black Studies program, the students stated "We feel that the present curriculum with its token black courses does not even begin to prepare us for life as Black Americans," the students said.
As a result of the protest, a Black Studies minor was introduced in 1972. TCU made efforts to hire a Black minister, but lack of funding and difficulty in finding a suitable candidate hampered the search. A Black counselor was hired in 1971.