MONTGOMERY, Ala (WTVG) - If the goal of a football game is to get the actual football from "Point A" to "Point B" - with "Point B" being the endzone - the schedules for schools on bowl trips follow a similar path.
Teams will often have practice or a side event in the morning, lunch, media obligations, more film time, dinner and finally an event in the evening. The Rockets and the Mountaineers from Appalachian State visited the Rosa Parks Library & Museum here in Montgomery as one of the team's events on the bowl schedule leading up to the game.
Troy University-Montgomery operates the Rosa Parks Library & Museum and it is located next to where she refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery city bus 61 years ago.
While the museum space is small and contained on part of one level of a multi-story building, it took the team about an hour to walk through while also listening to a brief lecture and watching a 20 minute video on the history of Parks and the Civil Rights Movement in Montgomery. The video presentation covered two different rooms including the second half of the video presented on screens built into a replica Montgomery city bus.
The actual bus from that day is on display at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Mich.
For many of the Rockets - both players and coaches - this was their first trip to Montgomery and the museum.
"Just realizing the impact of the one simple move that she had on the entire movement and the entire country and world that we live in today," said Rockets strong safety Connery Swift.
Born in Birmingham, Ala., but raised in the north, Rockets volunteer assistant coach Michael Roberts says he's never been to the museum in Montgomery.
"Things like this get overlooked," Roberts said. "When you get the opportunity to be around it and see it and stand in a spot like this you don't understand how monumental it is. It gets your blood going a little bit, gets you flowing. But you know what it does, it shows you how far we've come and how far we have to go."