'Inspirational' coach behind 'Remember the Titans' dies, aged 84

Chris Young
Sports Reporter

The high school football coach whose story inspired the film ‘Remember the Titans’ has died, aged 84.

Herman Boone was the Virginia coach who guided T.C. Williams High School to a state championship in 1971, in the early days if desegregation in American schools.

The school went undefeated on their way to the championship, which was widely considered to be a galvanising force during a time of bitter division.

Aly Khan Johnson, an assistant coach alongside Boone, confirmed the 84-year-old’s passing after a lengthy battle with cancer, acknowledging the tremendous impact the North Carolina-born mentor had not only on the team, but the broader community at large.

“When I got there, you saw kids work together, hung out together,” Johnson said.

This 1971 file photo shows Alexandria, Va's., T.C. Williams High School football coach Herman Boone. Boone, the Virginia high school football coach who inspired the movie 'Remember the Titans' has died. He was 84. (AP Photo/File)

“It was a brotherhood that you would see.

“As you know, athletics does something for a community, and it happened at the right time for that community.”

Boone was portrayed by Denzel Washington in the 2000 film depicting T.C. Williams’ historic championship run.

Extreme heatwave wreaks havoc on Aussie sporting schedule

On Thursday, Australia faced its third consecutive day of record-breaking heat that's exacerbating an already catastrophic situation for many states.

A state of emergency was declared in New South Wales as bushfires and extreme heat wrecked devastation across the state.

While firefighters tirelessly battle the ever-growing menace of deadly bushfires, the sporting landscape has been thrown into chaos around the country, with more scorching temperatures expected.

New Zealand have taken the drastic measure of abandoning the opening day of their warm-up game ahead of the Boxing Day Test against Australia because of sweltering conditions forecast for Melbourne.

Team management cancelled Friday's play on player welfare grounds because of a predicted maximum temperature ranging from 43C to 45C.

The match against a Victoria XI at Scotch College, scheduled for Friday and Sunday, will become a one-day first class match.