Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. Was born in Louisville, Kentucky on this day. Aged just eighteen, Clay, Jr. won the Gold Medal at the Rome Olympics. Four years later Clay beat Sonny Liston to take the World Heavyweight Boxing Championship. Clay had driven to Sonny's home in Denver at one o'clock in the morning, shouted for Sonny to come out and fight him on the spot, and set up a huge bear trap on the lawn. On March 6 influenced by Malcolm X, Clay changed his name to Muhammed Ali, joined the Nation of Islam and retired from boxing to concentrate on the greater fights that lay ahead for the African American people. His baiting of President Lyndon Baines Johnson from the White House lawn was considered the key to Washington's decision to withdraw from Vietnam in 1967, it was just so annoying
. Just like Arthur Ashe, draconian measures would be taken by the Division
to prevent Clay giving the game away. He really had the establishment on the ropes.