By Randy Young (aka Yellowdawg) in 2001
There is a little gnawing sensation in the gut of every person who bleeds red and black this week.
Nervousness? Possibly. Anxiety? Potentially. Anticipation? Maybe.
For me, I am convinced there are ghosts at work.
See, it’s Florida week. A week unlike any other week. A week with a feeling no Tech or Tennessee fan will ever have the slightest grasp of.
You know what I am talking about – they never will.
There are more ghosts at work here for this week than meets the eye of the untrained observer.
I was born and raised in Jacksonville, growing up in a Bulldog home that happened to be located in a Gator world. Every year, when this week would roll around, I would curl up on my bed, and listen to that man on the radio, the one that sounded like a Bulldog would sound if he could talk.
“…Appleby! The end around! Just stopped, planted his feet and threw it, and Washington caught it, thinking of Montreal and the Olympics, and ran out of his shoes right down the middle 80 yards. The Gator Bowl rocking, stunned – the girdors are bending now!”
As a kid, I was always impressed that it always seemed however improbable the odds, that team from Georgia seemed to find a way to overcome them. There was lesson in that.
“…the Gators had us down and out 27-13, but in this Gator Bowl where we broke their hearts last year, our guys ran behind that big quarterback from Moultrie and came back to win it 41-27…
When my family moved to Georgia from Jacksonville, I would find a quiet spot out in the yard, plop down on the fall leaves and listen to the game on my AM radio, and think about all those games past.
…”Florida in a standup 5. They may or may not blitz, they won’t. Buck back, third down on the 8. In trouble, got a block behind him. Gonna throw on the run. Complete to the 25! Lindsay Scott, 35, 40, Lindsay Scott 45, 50. Run, Lindsay! 25, 20, 15, 10, 5. Lindsay Scott! Lindsay Scott! Lindsay Scott!”
Even when it was a given that the Florida team was the far superior unit, that meant little.
“…we are holding on to a 17-3 lead against the #1 ranked Gators, but they have our backs against our own goal trying to make something happen against us, at our own 11. We hand it off the Worley – there’s a hole – he’s got 10, 15, 20 – gets a block Tim Worley 45 50 45 40, down the sideline – Tim Worley, touchdown touchdown touchdown!!”
You have to wonder what will happen this year. A Florida team, the kings of the SEC hill with perhaps the best coach in the conference, loaded with stars, but hurting after a shocking upset. A Georgia team on the rise, a new coach and a budding confidence, one dropped TD pass away from being undefeated.
“…we’re going to Edwards, gets a block, Edwards 35 30, Edwards down the sideline 15 10 – touchdown!! Robert Edwards with his second score today!” There ain’t nothing on earth quite like this game. So many ghosts running the field. Herschel and Sinkwich and Dooley will be there. So will Patton and Etter, Erk and Hoage, Hampton, Henderson and Zambiasi.
Will there be another legendary chapter written for the red and black? With Stonewall Richt leading the Bulldawg Brigade against Usama Bin Spurrier, our cause is right, and it is just.
The time is now.
“Always mystify, mislead, and surprise the enemy…repeated victory will make you invincible. Have faith in God that the victory will be won, irregardless of odds.” — Gen. T. J. “Stonewall” Jackson, CSA