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Originally published July 25, 2007 at 12:00 AM | Page modified July 25, 2007 at 2:05 AM

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College Football | Boise State's Johnson receives racial threats

A boise State running back who scored the winning points in the Fiesta Bowl before proposing to his cheerleader girlfriend on national television...

BOISE, Idaho — A Boise State running back who scored the winning points in the Fiesta Bowl before proposing to his cheerleader girlfriend on national television has hired security for his weekend wedding because of racial threats, a newspaper reported Tuesday.

Ian Johnson, who is black, and his fiancée, Chrissy Popadics, who is white, are to be married Saturday in Boise.

A report on letters and phone calls Johnson has received was carried in an Idaho Statesman sports column.

Johnson ran into the end zone on a Statue of Liberty play to score the winning two-point conversion as underdog Boise State beat Oklahoma 43-42 in overtime Jan. 1. The Broncos ended their season 13-0.

Johnson proposed to Popadics, at the time a Boise State cheerleader, on the field after time expired in the game in Glendale, Ariz.

Since then, Johnson said he has received phone calls, 30 letters and, in some instances, personal threats from people who objected to his plans to marry Popadics.

"You take it for what it is — the less educated, the less willing to change," Johnson told the newspaper. "But we're not acting like we're naive to all the stuff that's going on. We know what's been said. We're going to make sure we're safe at all times. It's an amazing day for us, and we'd hate to have it ruined by someone."

He didn't describe the threats — or the heightened security measures the couple plans — in detail.

Jury finds against Notre Dame's Weis

BOSTON — A jury found against Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis in his malpractice lawsuit against two doctors he claimed botched his care after he had gastric bypass surgery five years ago.

The jury deliberated for less than half a day before finding surgeons Charles Ferguson and Richard Hodin of Massachusetts General Hospital were not negligent.

Weis, 51, accused the surgeons of negligence, saying they allowed him to bleed internally for 30 hours before performing a second surgery to correct the complication.

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Weis nearly died after the 2002 surgery. He testified that he still has numbness and pain in his feet and sometimes has to use a motorized cart.

Note

• Senior running back Alley Broussard announced he is leaving the Louisiana State program but intends to graduate in December.

Copyright © 2007 The Seattle Times Company

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