Tuesday, April 17, 2012

GATArchives: 1984 GDay, Varsity versus Alumni

Ok, so we've been stuck in 1984 for the last couple editions of GATArchives. It's cool with me cuz I can still rock my Members Only and impress all the 8th grade chicks with my retainer. So let's give it one more go. And for this we give a huge fist bump to Dawgs19 for sending the clipping below. I hope I was able to make it big enough for you to read. If not, now's a good time to go dig out that magnifying glass. It relates to Georgia's spring game before that 1984 Citrus Bowl and before that epic win over Clemson. 
from The Macon Telegraph
Reading over that my curiosity peaked. Because what's notable about the article above is that we had players just removed from campus like Ronnie Stewart playing in the same game as much older players such as Kent Lawrence (who played in this game shortly before being appointed to the State Court by Gov. Joe Frank Harris...and after a couple stints in the NFL, time as a UGA police officer, Clarke Co. Chief of Police, a prosecutor and a judge). And they were playing against the likes of Jeff Sanchez and Andre "Pulpwood" Smith. (Smith would of course lead the team in rushing later that season before being dismissed from the program.) I just love that quote from Lawrence - "After I caught it, I turned on the jets and headed east. But I ran out of fuel." Having had the privilege on sitting on Judge Lawrence's jury stand, that's one to remember. Considering he was nearing 40 years young at the time of the game it's understandable that the fuel tanks might have been a bit lower than they were in the 1967 Cotton Bowl.

"Pulpwood" returned to Sanford this past Saturday to participate in the alumni flag football game. And that's likely as close as we'll get to seeing legends grace the field at Sanford again, at least while wearing cleats. I knew the answer but had to ask the question we all would wonder after seeing this newsprint from so long ago. So I took the liberty of contacting AD McGarity about any possibility of this happening again. The answer of course was somewhere just short of there's not a snowball's chance in hell. It's just a different age now than it was back then. As cool as it would be to see Damian Swann try and cover Hines Ward, it's an image that will have to live on in our imagination.

Attendance for GDay is up. Moving the spring game away from Masters weekend was one of McGarity's best decisions for the fans of the football program. We see a lot of discussion this time of year about the value in GDay. There are a lot of different ways to look at it. What do the fans like? What do the players prefer? What's better for the program? 


In the end, perhaps the way the scrimmage is structured is most important for the coaches doing the evaluation. They've invested a lot of time in prepping the players for drills and scrimmages all spring, you want them to go away from GDay with some idea of where the players are in their development. That's an item that might be up for some debate in terms of whether the current GDay set up can provide that better than say a scrimmage against another nearby program.

I don't know. I'd just love the chance to see a 50 year old Herschel Walker strap that chinstrap on tight and have a go at Ray Drew on an outside sweep. An old Dawg can dream right?