SEC title game brought out the best in family members

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 23, 2000

Sports Editor

I thought it was pretty funny to read the other day that a prominent preseason football magazine had a mix-up in their negatives and ran the wrong picture on the cover of this year’s issue.

For those of you who haven’t heard, this year’s issue of Street and Smith’s College Football magazine will feature a picture of a Florida Gator

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quarterback on the cover.

But it won’t be Jessie Palmer who is supposed to be starting this season at the helm for Spurrier,

It will be Danny Wuerffel, who has since went missing-in-action after leading Florida to the National Championship a few years back.

It just goes to show you that even the "big" boys make mistakes.

Oh and by the way, speaking of Florida, I wasn’t there, but I’ve heard it was a lot of fun.

I’m talking about the SEC title game that took place last December in the Georgia Dome. Or what my Uncle, Larry Blackburn, calls the "Georgiana" Dome, in reference to a small town located in the south of Butler County.

From what I saw on TV, if you were a Gator fan…well, it was about time you got a little taste of your own medicine for once and even though I’m a Dyed in the wool Tiger, it was quite funny to watch Steve Spurrier roaming the sidelines, hair all disarray, without a visor to his name.

After Freddie Millions made like Nebraska’s Tommy Frazier (ala 1997 Fiesta Bowl) and juked the entire Gator defense, including several assistant coaches, on his way to TD paradise, Coach Superior was on the bench during a TV timeout, head in hands, a beaten man coaching a beaten team.

From Larry and my other uncle, Mike Blackburn, I got all types of stories.

One was that Tennessee quarterback Tee Martin, who is from Mobile, was in attendance and sat close to both my uncles as they sat there yelling and screaming as "Roll Alabama" was being played by the Tide marching band.

Larry attempted to encourage Martin to cheer also.

"Get up T-Bone!" He yelled.

After Millons scored, Tee got up and left. I guess having to watch Alabama, a team that the Vols beat, whip Florida, a team that tossed Martin all over Ben Griffith Stadium like a ‘Rag-Vol’, was just more then Tee could handle. Plus he had some loud and crazy idiots – namely my relatives – screaming in his ear.

Another story from Larry was that Mike sprinted up and down the stadium stairs everytime Alabama scored, hugging Tide fans of all shapes and sizes, including a 400-pound man dressed in crimson from head to foot.

That’s right. 400-pounds.

Now why in God’s name would a single man like him latch on to something like that?