Uncle Rico

Uncle Rico
Back in high school, I could throw the pigskin a quarter mile...

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Memories from MY High School Career II

Now, the final 5...

5. Bigger, Faster, Stronger
Before my junior year our head coach, Jimmy Nazary, invested in the workout program Bigger, Faster, Stronger. One Saturday we met at the gym and these stud looking dudes showed us lifts and explained the program to us. It was cold as all get out and at the end of the day the boosters fed us. That was also the first SEC championship game and the Turds won over Florida.

4. The Damn Boat is Sinking...
My senior football season was somewhat forgetable. One game in particular that really makes me wish I had amnesia was the Robertsdale game. At Foley, you don't lose to Robertsdale. It is not negotiable. In 89 games Foley is 68-15-6. That is about as lopsided as it gets. One of the 15 losses for Foley came my senior year as we dropped a 12-7 contest to the Golden Bears. The thing aboutplaying Robertsdale is they play Foley as if they were in the Super Bowl. You are going to get their best effort and they did that night. They out played us every play. They whipped us like we stole something. We probably had superior talent, but they had the want to that night. We went from a option team to a spread team trying to throw the ball. Why that was I have no idea, but we did. The next Monday about 5-6 players decided to quit, which in hindsight was best for the entire team.

3. Thursday Night Lasagna
Every Thursday before games one of my teammates mother would cook us a lasagna dinner the night before the game. We had fun with it as we would break out the video camera and make dumb videos of us doing a coaches show we called Coach's Corner. I would be the head coach being interviewed by my buddies discussing the previous weeks game and the upcoming game. We would make dumb commercials, but it was fun. Ma Scott took excellent care of her boys. Jason was a great teammate and friend and she was a great person to have around after losing my mother.

2. The Catch Off the Head
The week after losing to Robertsdale, we had so many distractions. On Monday our quarterback and a few of his cronies who were seniors ditched practice. This strengthened the resolve of our team as we broke in another quarterback, Adam Stewart. Adam was a great athlete who could pass the ball very well and could run as well. We had to modify our offense to adjust to his new style. We were also playing BCHS and were hungry for a win. We played hard and took a pretty good BCHS team to the wire. We had the lead late in the game and thought we were going to get off the mat finally. On a third or fourth down play BCHS's QB threw a pass to their tightend. The ball ricoched off his hands, then his head and landed right into his arms. At that point we knew we were snakebitten. We allowed the go ahead TD with hardly anytime left on the clock and ened up losing the game.

1. Upset Special
You are probably saying, "damn all he's talked about were losses in his top 5." Well number won was the greatest feeling in the world. The euphoria of victory was like none I had ever felt before. Blount High School rolled into town as the 2 time defending state champion in 5-A. They had a legendary coach in Ben Harris, they had athletes all over the field. We, however, were not chopped liver. We had good coaching and great leadership from the senior class that year. Guys like Grant Corley, Matt Bond, Jason Haupt, Mike Malone, Shannon Edwards, Josh Ewing and Jason Scott made sure us younger players kept our minds right week in and week out.

The day of the game was different from any I had ever been associated with. The excitement was so thick, but it was a quiet excitement. You could see it in everyone in the school, from the people who didn't care much about football to our biggest fans. As players we were all focused. No one really said much to each other all day long. We all kind of kept to ourselves and didn't do much jacking around as me normally would. Pregame meal was totally sient. Usually someone would have to get on someone for talking, but this day was different. When we got dressed guys were starting to smile, as if they knew something big was about to happen. Then we arrived at the stadium and the t.v. cameras were on, Coach Nazary was being interviewed on local television. The stands were filling early. At 5 o'clock the bleachers on the home side were half full in the general admission, which made warmups fun because we were getting cheered on during a time when hardly anyone is there.

When the game started we kicked off to them. To my knowledge we got the ball back off of a turnover and had excellent field position. Blount then proceeded to jump offsides twice in a row and I knew they were undisciplined. When I walked up to the line, the guy in front of me looked huge. When Mike Malone and I double team blocked him about 10 yards downfield I knew I we could win on the offensive line. The game went back and forth in the first half with the score tied at 0-0. I actually caused a fumble on a punt return, however I sprained my big toe. I went on to finish the game with the help of a tape job.

Midway through the 3rd quarter, what I like to call "The Drive" took place. I think our defense stopped them on 4th down down near our 10 yard line to give us the ball back. We drove down the field in about 10 or 12 plays and scored from the 2 yeard line and kicked the extra point to go ahead 7-0. Our defens would play lights out and we held on to win by the same score.

The stands stayed packed several minutes after the game had ended. Coach Nazary gave us a congratulatory speech and told us how proud he was of us. He even shed a little tear. As a team we all ran back out and the band played for another 30-40 minutes. People were on the field congratulating us, players and parents were hugging one another. It was a great scene! It is also my fondest memory from my high school playing days.

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