Moms, Hug ’em if you Got ‘Em.

September 26th, 2012

Thirty-nine years ago a woman went into labor on her 25th Birthday. Eighteen hours later on the following morning she delivered her first child. She spent the next two and a half decades raising this son. She was a Bama fan.

Her own father had abandoned her family when she was in the ninth grade and left behind a chasm of missed experiences; birthdays, being crowned homecoming queen, graduations, and the like. Despite these shortcomings she idolized him till the day he died. His family hailed from the coal mines of Alabama so she followed the Tide and worshipped The Bear. Her father had instilled in her a love of sports at a young age, and throughout her life she shocked those she knew with her in-depth knowledge and understanding of a wide variety of sports. Continue reading

Larry Munson: Better Than Being There

From Kathy Sue Loudermilk, I Love You; 1979

Sometime in the wee hours of Sunday morning, my telephone rang. Even the ring sounded drunk. Among a number of other bad things, alcohol in large quantities dulls the ability of the user to tell time.

I muttered a groggy, hesitant, “Hello?”

“Gooooooo Daaaawgs!” was the reply from the other end. Deliver me from Billy Bulldog when it’s the middle of the night, Georgia won, and the whisky hasn’t run out.

“That you, Dorsey?” I asked. It had to be. It had to be Dorsey Hill, the world’s biggest Bulldog fan. Dorsey Hill thinks when you die you go to Vince Dooley’s house. He can’t wait.

Last year, when Georgia lost to Kentucky, 33-0, Dorsey claimed it didn’t count because Kentucky was on probation for recruiting violations and had too many players from New Jersey.

“Best team money could buy,” is how he described the victorious Wildcats, who went on to tie for the Southeastern Conference title. Dorsey dies hard.

I was awake enough by now to realize why the telephone call. Only hours before, Georgia had avenged last season’s loss to Kentucky with a thrilling 17-16 victory in Lexington. The Bulldogs had trailed 16-0 in the third quarter.

“I never gave up,” Dorsey said. “After the miracle at Grant Field Saturday, I knew the Lord would give us one, too.”

He was referring to Georgia Tech’s equally thrilling 17-13 defeat to Florida Saturday afternoon. Dorsey doesn’t like Georgia Tech or anyone else who does.

“I like it when we sweep a double-header,” he explains. “That’s when Georgia wins and Tech loses.”

I have never quite understood that thinking, but there are those among the Georgia Tech followers who feel the same about the Bulldogs.

“I wouldn’t pull for Georgia,” a Tech man once told me, “with one engine out on the team plane.”

I thought Saturday was one of the grandest days in Georgia collegiate football history. Tech wins its sixth straight and Grant Field hasn’t been that full of life in years.

That old house on North Avenue literally trembled with delight when Eddie Lee Ivery scored the Yellow Jackets’ winning touchdown.

And Georgia’s drive to the Rex Robinson field goal in the final moments was a classic profile in sporting courage. Georgia is only two victories – Florida and Auburn – away from another SEC championship and a trip to the Sugar Bowl. That is astounding when you consider that in the pre-season, the Bulldogs bore a strong resemblance to Vanderbilt.

I am almost frightened to consider the ramifications of a Falcons’ victory over the Rams Monday night at the stadium. If the clinkers win, close the schools and banks and I demand a parade.

There was one other hero Saturday besides the Eddie Lee Iverys, the Willie McClendons, and the Rex Robinsons. He is a fiftyish fellow from Minnesota.

He worked in Wyoming for a time, and then spent years and years in Nashville. He moved to Atlanta only a few months ago, but he is one of us now.

“The traffic here,” he says, “is murder.”

Larry Munson has been broadcasting Georgia football games for thirteen years. Saturday night was his finest hour. His description of the closing moments of the Georgia-Kentucky game, said a man listening with me, “is Bobby Thomson’s home run against the Dodgers all over again.”

It was so good, the Sunday paper reprinted Munson’s call of the winning Georgia field goal word-for-word.

It’s set down, it looks good – watch it! YEAH! YEAH! YEAH! YEAH! Three seconds left! Rex Robinson put ’em ahead, 17-16!”

It was so good, Dorsey Hill said, “listening to Larry Munson was better than being there.”

Frame that one, Larry. There is no higher praise.

Lewis Grizzard

Munson Tapes

We all remember Buck Belue:

God Bless him for that he threw.

And Blessings, too, go out to Lindsay.

Who caught the pass to ignite the frenzy.

And forevermore, there’s Herschel Walker.

Just ask Bill Bates about the Goal Line Stalker.

Of course there’s Donnan and Theron Sapp;

Both ended droughts to make us clap.

There’s Charlie Trippi, with broken noses;

Flatfoot Frankie striking the Heisman poses.

And let’s keep in mind that Wally drove’em nuts;

The sign that read “Nobody beats our butts.”

Coach Dooley said. “We gotta run the ball”

He praised opponents, large and small.

It was the Irish, of course, Vince helped us beat,

When we partied down on Bourbon Street.

And good ole’ Erk made the defense go;

Head to helmet and his veins would flow.

“Fires up the dawgs,” we’d hear him say,

“See’n that blood really makes’em play.”

There’s Hearst and Hastings and the Eric Zeier;

Back in ’92 they set the world afire.

Jake Scott, Bill Stanfill and the Florida game;

Gators still cringe when they hear their names.

Johnson, Lastinger and Kasay, too;

In the final seconds they all came through.

And the Butler did it in ’84;

From 60 yards he slammed the door.

But perhaps the greatest dawg of all,

Had never played a down of ball.

He’s loved the Dawgs through thick and thin,

From top to bottom and back again.