The track where John Carlos and Tommie Smith practiced for the 1968 Mexico City Olympics will be paved over and turned into a parking garage.

By Charlotte Carroll
April 04, 2019

The track where iconic U.S. sprinters John Carlos and Tommie Smith practiced for the 1968 Mexico City Olympics will be paved over and turned into a parking garage, reports Fox KTVU.

San Jose State revealed plans Wednesday to turn the Bud Winter Field into a multi-level garage that will accommodate 1,500 cars. While the school had planned to create a new practice facility and track, San Jose State athletics media relations director Lawrence Fan said the university needs parking. 

Smith and Carlos, who were students at the school, won gold and bronze, respectively, in the men's 200 meter final. The two made history while taking the podium by raising their fists during the ceremony to protest racism and injustice against African-Americans in the U.S. Both were sent home from the Olympics by the U.S. Olympic Committee for their actions. 

A statue depicting the moment was dedicated at San Jose State in 2005. 

"We are going to do everything we can to preserve the history of what's taken place as it pertains to San Jose State’s track and field," Fan said.

A petition has been set up on Change.org to help save the track.

"Two years ago we watched from the crowd as the University invited Track & Field LEGENDS to campus to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 1968 Olympics," the campaign page states. "A big to-do was made about bringing SJSU Mens T&F back and building a track. We've now learned that NO Fundraising Plan was ever created. It was never created at all and the University now holds that they can't afford to build a track because they don't have the funds--Well newsflash, you can't generate funds if you never had a plan in the first place. Numerous successful plans and campaigns for other sports are proudly touted by the President and AD and yet one of the most legendary and historically influential teams (SJSU Track and Field) doesn't even get the respect of a fundraising campaign? Terribly disappointing."

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Eagle (-2)
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