Thursday, February 25, 2010

Aggressive on the Field, Aggressive at the Bar

Barry Sorrels tiday

If you think playing football at Columbia in the 1970's was tough, try defending an accused murderer in a Texas courtroom.

Barry Sorrels '75, has done both... successfully.

Sorrels came to Columbia in 1971 from Dallas, Texas and starred that season on the freshmen team by leading the squad in interceptions. He spent the next couple of seasons bouncing back and forth from secondary to fullback, before finally settling in at safety on the varsity. He was never bigger than 5-10 and 175 lbs. in his playing days.

Columbia only went 1-8 in Sorrels' senior season of 1974, but his three interceptions, dozens of hard hits, and perhaps his impressive man of long hair earned him a spot on the All Ivy 1st Team. He was not only the only Lion on the 1st Team that year, he was the only Lion on EITHER the 1st or 2nd Team! (offensive linemen George Tomasek and Dwight Valentine made honorable mention).

After graduation, Sorrels returned to Dallas to attend SMU law school and launch what has become a legendary legal career in Texas.

Among other things, Sorrels has tried more than 300 federal and state trials throughout Texas and other states. He has won acquittals on charges ranging from federal fraud to first degree murder.

Sorrels appears regularly on TV as legal expert.

I know, I know... some of you may be asking why a guy like me is lauding a trial lawyer. Well besides the fact that he's a Columbia football great, he's a fine example of how Ivy League football produces future leaders and hard chargers for decades after the playing days are over.


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