Tuesday, August 7, 2012
With that, I'm gonna take a trip back and share my "BIG" football memory. I was not a big guy in high school, but I love the sport and went out for the team. My freshman year I was the 3rd-string nose guard on the freshman team. At that time (1969),none of the freshmen were allowed to play with the varsity (10th-12th) team until the 9th grade (6 game) schedule was completed. And then only at the coach's invitation. Going into our last game I think I had been in a total of 10-12 plays. Our last game was with West Point High and with 6 minutes to go in the game we were up 60-0. The coach looked at me and said "W*** ! Get in there and finish up!" I was ecstatic. I was literally the next-to-last player to enter the game. Just a few play later, the guys on either side of me (As nose-guard I was over the WP center) went out - one with cramps and one with an injury. The coach had to put the starters back in and for freshmen, these guys were huge. Both over 6'3" and 250 pounds. So now - let me set up the moment. West Point (for the most point) was also playing their subs. They had the ball on their own 25 yard line and there was now less than two minutes left in the game. The QB takes a slightly bobbled snap and tries to turn, with the intent to hand off to his running back. As he is turning, the hulks on both sides of me bust through the line and hit the QB at the same time. The ball squirts into the air just as I finally beat the center and get into the backfield. I snag the ball and cover the last 15 yards into the end zone before anyone on the West Point team realized what had happened. I crossed the goal line, ball raised in the year, screaming like crazy before I got mugged and nearly crushed by the rest of our defense. But I didn't care - I scored a touchdown. It didn't matter that we missed the extra point and the final was 66-0. I scored!. And by a strange twist of fate, the only pic in our paper (with the game wrap-up) was me crossing the goal with the ball in the air. "The headline with the pic was "Rare touchdown for a lineman". But that was it - my moment of glory! I'm forever after in my alma mater's record book. GO JACKETS!
Everyone have a great day!