BOISE, Idaho -- Before Boise State running back Ian Johnson
married the girl he proposed to on national television, the couple
prayed to end prejudice.
Johnson and Chrissy Popadics, the cheerleader he proposed to
after scoring the winning points in the Fiesta Bowl against
Oklahoma, were married Saturday in a traditional ceremony at the Cathedral of the Rockies First United Methodist Church.
Johnson, who is black, has said he received phone calls and
about 30 letters, including personal threats from people who
objected to his plans to marry his white fiancee. Johnson has not
described the threats, and it is unclear where they came from.
The ceremony began with the prayer and ended with the couple
jumping over a broom -- an African tradition signifying the couple
jumping into a new life together.
As they drove away in a stretch limousine, Johnson kissed his
new wife and said, "Let's play ball," the Idaho Statesman
Johnson ran for a 2-point conversion on a "Statue of Liberty" play
to give the underdog Broncos a 43-42 overtime win over Oklahoma on
Jan. 1 in Glendale, Ariz. Boise State finished the season 13-0 and
No. 5 in the AP Top 25.