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BSU player hires wedding security after racist threats

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BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- A Boise State University running back who scored the winning points in the Fiesta Bowl, then proposed to his cheerleader girlfriend on national television, has hired security for his weekend wedding because of racial threats, a newspaper reported Tuesday.

Ian Johnson, who is black, and his fiance, Chrissy Popadics, who is white, are due to be married Saturday in Boise.A report on the letters and phone calls that Johnson has received was carried in an Idaho Statesman sports column.

Johnson, 21, from San Dimas, Calif., ran into the end zone on a so-called "Statue of Liberty" play to score the winning two-point conversion as underdog BSU beat the Oklahoma Sooners 43-42 in overtime on Jan. 1. The Broncos ended their season 13-0 and wound up ranked No. 5 in the final AP poll.

Johnson, who will be a junior this fall, proposed to Popadics, at the time a Broncos cheerleader, on the field after time expired in the game in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Since then, Johnson said he's received phone calls, 30 letters and, in some instances, personal threats from people who objected to his plans to marry Popadics.

"You take it for what it is -- the less educated, the less willing to change," Johnson told the Statesman. "But we're not acting like we're naive to all the stuff that's going on. We know what's been said. We're going to make sure we're safe at all times. It's an amazing day for us, and we'd hate to have it ruined by someone."He didn't describe the threats -- or the heightened security measures the couple have planned -- in detail.

"It's unfortunate that it involves a certain protocol being followed to ensure that nothing happens," Johnson said. "It's really sad because a lot of people that are probably doing it are the same people who were cheering me on."

A BSU football spokesman, Todd Miles, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that Johnson hopes to put the matter behind him and does not want to comment further. Johnson's phone number is unlisted.

Popadics' family in Boise declined to make her available Tuesday for an interview.

Why does it matter what people do in their personal life??? People really need to get a life.

Oh, and what a terrible last name she has....

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Its sad that this **** still goes on, if the 2 people love each other, than what the hell, leave them alone.

Some people believe that people should stay within their own race, I don't see why.

My mother was the same way, but I ignored that.

Ian and his girlfriend/soon to be wife shouldn't pay any attention to the nay-sayers in this marraige, if they want to get the married, than go on with it.

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