Who do you think should manage Ferriday water?|
Story Archives: Looking at traditions
- 2013 - 340 articles
- 2012 - 856 articles
- 2011 - 635 articles
- 2010 - 1276 articles
- 2009 - 1591 articles
- 2008 - 1763 articles
|Looking at traditions|
Taking a different look at college football as we begin counting down the dog days of summer.
Tradition. It's everywhere. OK, not exactly everywhere. San Diego State, Utah, Minnesota, Duke, Temple and Rice may not make the list.
But there are tons of tradition elsewhere as you will soon see.
And if you find an error somewhere, call Wikipedia.
Of course, we'll start down in Baton Rouge.
LSU played its first football game on Nov. 25, 1893, losing its only game that year to Tulane, 34-0.
On November 30, 1984, LSU won its first football game, defeating Natchez Athletic Club 26-0 in Natchez. Not sure if Judge Leo Boothe was there or not.
Samuel Marmaduke Dinwidie Clark has the honor of scoring the very first touchdown in LSU history. LSU lost to Ole Miss 26-6 a week later and then won its first home game 30-0 over Centenary on December 21.
There are eight former LSU players in the College Football Hall of Fame, compared to five former LSU coaches.
The players are Doc Fenton, Abe Mickal, Gaynell "Gus" Tinsley, Ken Kavanaugh, Billy Cannon, Tommy Casanova, Jerry Stovall and current inductee Charles Alexander.
The coaches are Dana X. Bible, Michael Donahue, Lawrence "Biff" Jones, Bernie Moore and Charlie McClendon.
Donahue was inducted more for his success as head coach at Auburn.
He served as head football coach at Auburn (19041906, 19081922), at LSU (19231927), and at Spring Hill College. He was inducted into the Hall 1951. Donahue Drive in Auburn, on which JordanHare Stadium is located and the Tiger Walk takes place, is named in his honor.
Donahue went on to become the seventeenth head football coach at LSU in 1923 and had a 23193 record over five seasons before retiring from coaching after the 1927 season. He also served briefly as the head coach of the LSU Tigers baseball team (19251926), compiling a record of 15153, and as the head men's tennis coach at LSU (19461947), tallying a mark of 07.
I'm still amazed at some of the former Tigers who are not in the Hall of Fame.
I truly believe Ferriday's Max Fugler should be a member. Solid arguments can also be made for Y.A. Tittle, Glenn Dorsey, Alan Faneca, Mike Williams, Bert Jones, Kevin Faulk, Winnsboro's Anthony McFarland, George Bevan, Ronnie Estay and a number of others.
Then again, I don't understand Paul Dietzel not being among the coaches. No doubt Nick Saban and Les Miles will one day be among that number.
The LSU-Alabama rivalry goes way back, dating back to the 1960s when Paul "Bear" Bryant and Charlie McClendon faced off, usually with "Bear" winning. LSU defeated Alabama 2010 at Birmingham in Bryant's last game against LSU in 1982. "Bear" retired a month later at end of season. He died two months later. During his post-game interviews, Bryant acknowledged LSU's defense as being so impressive as for him to call that game "an old-fashioned butt-whipping" after LSU's defense had held 'Bama to just 80-yards of total offense, the lowest offensive production in 'Bama history.
Later that week, LSU's defensive front seven of Rydell Melancon, Tim Joiner, Leonard Marshall, Bill Elko and Ramsey Dardar and linebackers Albert Richardson and Lawrence Williams were named "AP Sportswriters' Defensive Player of the Week", the first time an entire front-seven unit was so named. The LSU secondary of James Britt, Liffert Hobley, Jeffrey Dale and Alex Clark were instrumental in the shutdown but were not included in the AP honor.
That team, coached by Stovall, received a bid to the Orange Bowl to play Nebraska.
The game suffered from poor attendance due to riots in the Miami area as well as the game having no impact on the national championship, since No. 2 Penn State defeated No. 1 Georgia earlier in the day in the Sugar Bowl.
LSU began the season 7-0-1, but lost in November to heavy underdogs Mississippi State and Tulane to come in 8-2-1 and ranked No. 13 by the AP and UPI polls. Nebraska was 11-1 and ranked No. 3 in both polls, but they had been denied a chance to play for the national championship due to a controversial 27-24 loss at Penn State early in the season.
Dalton Hilliard scored from the 1-yard line to tie the game at 7-7.
Nebraska drove to the LSU 15 before fumbling again, then inexplicably fumbled a third time after forcing LSU to punt. Turner Gill then threw an interception. The Tigers took advantage with a second Hilliard 1-yard touchdown run, and Nebraska found itself trailing 14-7 at halftime after committing four turnovers on four consecutive series.
LSU converted another Husker fumble into a 28-yard Juan Bentanzos field goal, which gave them a 17-7 lead.
On the very next series, Nebraska went on a 12 play, 80 yard scoring drive, capped by an 11-yard swing pass from Gill to Mike Rozier which pulled the Huskers within three at 17-14.
Gill then finished off a 7-play, 47-yard drive with a quareterback sneak early in the fourth to put the Huskers ahead 21-17. Another miscue, this time a dropped pass on a fake field goal, prevented the Huskers from extending their lead.
LSU managed to get a 49-yard field goal from Bentanzos late following an interception (Nebraska's sixth turnover of the night), but they could not get the ball back again, and the Cornhuskers held on to win 21-20.
Of course, tradition at LSU is not limited to the football field.
In 1995, LSU's new coach, Gerry DiNardo, was determined to restore LSU's tradition of white home jerseys. DiNardo personally met with each member of the NCAA Football Rules Committee, lobbying LSU's case. DiNardo was successful, and LSU again began wearing white jerseys at home when the 1995 season began.
In LSU's first home game with the white jerseys, unranked LSU prevailed in a 126 upset victory over No. 6 Auburn. In 2000, LSU's new coach, Nick Saban, altered the tradition of the white home jerseys: now LSU only wears white jerseys for the home opener and for home games against SEC opponents.
Saban's successor, Les Miles, has continued this pattern. For non-SEC home games other than the home opener, LSU wears purple jerseys at home.
The rule allowing LSU to wear white at home has one stipulation: the visiting team must agree for non-conference games. On two occasions, LSU was forced to wear colored jerseys at home. The first time was in 1996 against Vanderbilt, who was still angry at LSU for hiring DiNardo, who left Vanderbilt to become LSU's head coach after the 1994 season. LSU wore gold jerseys for that game (a 350 LSU victory), and fans were encouraged to wear white in an effort to "white out" the Commodores. The next season, the SEC amended its rule to allow the home team its choice of jersey color for conference games without prior approval of the visiting team.
In 1998 and 2000, Florida coach Steve Spurrier exercised this option and forced LSU to don a colored jersey at Gainesville. The Tigers wore gold in 1998 under Gerry DiNardo (lost 2210) and purple in 2000 under Nick Saban (lost 419).
In 2007 and 2009, LSU wore its purple jerseys at Mississippi State, but the Tigers emerged victorious both times (450 in 2007 and 3026 in 2009). In 1978, the purple jersey jinx bit the Tigers in a game against State at Jackson.
In 2004, Oregon State did not want to suffer in its black jerseys in the humid weather of Louisiana in late summer, forcing LSU to wear its purple jerseys for a nationally-televised game on ESPN. However, by this time, LSU had worn its purple jerseys at home several times under Saban.
In 2009, the NCAA relaxed its rule that previously required most away teams to wear white. The rule now states that teams must simply wear contrasting colors.
The Tigers wore all white with purple and gold trim against Auburn last year. In 2009 against Arkansas, LSU was one of the first SEC programs to don Pro-Combat uniforms of "real" gold helmets, an LSU look from the early 1950s, and not the traditional yellow with purple trim that Paul Dietzel introduced on his way to leading the Tigers to their first national title in 1958.
We'll take a look at other schools, including Louisiana Tech and ULM next week.
|Frank Morris Murder Series|