Oh Yeah, We Heard The Crowd Roar!

Published: Thursday, September 19, 2013 at 08:35 AM.

            Our games grew as Joe and Richard Gooch, Terry Kennon and the King boys moved to the neighborhood. We didn’t know didley squat about social networking, playing by the rules or that grease paint you could put under your eyes. We chose up sides as to best enhance the game and went to playing. There were never any grown-ups in these back yard affairs. No officials. No timekeepers. No cheerleaders and no commercials. And very little arguing…… 

            We were playing a game. For fun. And excitement. And for the shear joy of living! Listen, it sure beat the heck out of cleaning fence rows and pitching heavy bales of hay onto a slow moving wagon. 

            We took road trips to that “stadium” over on Forest Avenue between where Ricky Hale and Jimmy Mabry lived. I near’ bout broke my leg in the Gwaltney’s side yard across from the Methodist Church. I knocked myself out running into John Ingram in that vacant lot beside Betty Scates’ house. Our world was expanding!   

Dad bought a TV. We learned to throw slant passes, “bring” an outside linebacker and double cover a dangerous wide receiver. We all went out for the junior high team and moved on to high school where the aforementioned coaches dispensed their life lessons in between “bull in the ring” and the grass drills.

            Those were the days my friend……

            Another football season is upon us. We will hear chants of “We’re Number One” till we all go stark raving crazy. Nike, Gatorade and Under Armor commercials will rule the air ways. We will tolerate prima donna quarterbacks and overpaid kickers because they might help us win. We will hear teeth whitened analyst give us way more information than we care to digest on why Texas A&M won’t make it to the title game, what happened to Frank Beamer’s special teams, can Alabama three peat and where will Tim Tebow land next. And that’s just in the first week!

            It all seems a little over the top for me. You talk about big business. Big money. And big egos. I can’t figure out if we are playing a game or providing some type of frenzied mayhem to the masses. 

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