By 1972, President Richard Nixon had reached the heights of political power and popularity, only to self-destruct due to his role in a third-rate burglary called Watergate. Nixon resigned in disgrace, and, for the first time in history, Americans came to be led by an unelected President and Vice President -- Gerald Ford and Nelson Rockefeller. But Americans had much more on their minds than mere politics -- movies, TV, sports, earning a living, etc. Hollywood motion pictures, including The Godfather, Jaws, and Star Wars, captured their imaginations, while weekly TV shows such as All in the Family and Happy Days made them laugh, and Monday Night Football kept their competitive juices flowing.
To no ones surprise, UCLA continued to win NCAA basketball championships, and such schools as Alabama, Arkansas, Michigan, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Penn State, Texas, and USC remained dominant on the gridiron. And professional sports, thanks to such super-stars as BIllie Jean King, Kareem Abul-Jabbar, Henry Aaron, Jack Nicklaus, Muhammad Ali, Al Unser, and Terry Bradshaw, became more popular than ever. But who could have predicted at the beginning of the decade that a young high school dropout named John Travolta and a band called the Bees Gees would become the kings of Disco Dancing? Or that a peanut farmer from Georgia would be elected President during our Bicentennial Year?