Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My Larry Munson Memories

I was born in Ohio and moved to the state of Georgia when I was 6. My parents were graduates of Morehead State University in Kentucky, whose very small football tradition consists of Phil Simms and beating the crap out of Marshall in "We are Marshall". So, needless to say, unlike many of the other posters on this blog I did not grow up on the voice of Larry Munson. After heading to the University of Georgia in 2000 and becoming a rabid Dawg fan, I witnessed the tail end of an amazing career for Larry and through DVD and the Internet, discovered his other famous calls I was missing during the first 18 years of my life. While I may not have heard any of them live at the time, when I think of these moments in my head, I will always think of Larry Munson.

Georgia Tech 2006: The "Last Great Munson Call". Plain and simple, he proceeded to say that they probably killed Loran. Classic.


Auburn 2002: I was in the third row in the opposite end zone. Until I got back to Athens on Sunday, I still thought it was actually Fred Gibson who caught the ball. The perfect call during the march to our First SEC championship in 20 years.
"We're on the 19, you gotta get to the 4 for the first down. Crowd roars at us, 3 wideouts. Man, we've had some shots haven't we? Snap to David Greene, there he goes in the corner again and we jump up... TOUCHDOWN! OH GOD A TOUCHDOWN! In the corner! With 85 seconds, somebody went up high. Was it Watson or Gibson? Michael Johnson up high, we're gonna put glasses on it. And they stagger down into the screen in the fences down in the corner. Michael Johnson turned around and got up in the air. We caught the ball! Its 23-21 with 85 seconds. He turned around and jumped. David Greene in a couple of times missed some opportunities like that. He caught it up high under his neck and had a foot in and knew it, and then got knocked out. Billy Bennett just put the extra point up there good. Its 24-21. David Greene just threw it in the corner and Michael Johnson who he's used a lot in this 4th quarter got racked up in the air, but hung on, and had his foot down in there... We scored!"
Florida 1980: This one became a personal favorite. The most amazing moment of the 1980 championship year and I wasn't even born yet.

Florida in a stand-up five, they may or may not blitz, Belue third down on the 8, in trouble, he got a block behind him going to throw on the run, complete on the 25 to the 30, Lindsay Scott 35, 40, Lindsay Scott 45, 50, 45, 40. ... Run Lindsay, 25, 20, 15, 10, Lindsay Scott! Lindsay Scott! Lindsay Scott! ... Well, I can't believe it. 92 yards and Lindsay really got in a foot race I broke my chair. I came right through a chair. A metal steel chair with about a 5 inch cushion, I broke it. The booth came apart. The stadium... well the stadium fell down, now they do have to renovate this place... they'll have to rebuild it now. This is incredible. You know this game has always been called the World's Greatest Cocktail Party, do you know what's gonna happen here tonight, and up at St. Simmons and Jeckyl Island, and all those places where all those dawg people have got those condominiums for 4 days. Man is there going to be some property destroyed tonight! 26-21, Dawgs on top. We were gone. I'd gave up, you did too. We were out of it and gone. Miracle!"

Tennessee 2001: The only call on this list I actually heard happen. With my high school class mate David Greene at quarterback, Larry made my favorite memory of a Georgia football game that I wasn't at in person.

And now, Greene makes him lineup on the right in the slot, we have 3 receivers. Tennessee playing what amounts to a 4-4, Fake, and there's somebody Touchdown! My God a Touchdown! We threw it to Haynes. We just stuffed them with five seconds left! My God almighty, did you see what he did! David Greene just straightened up and we snuck the fullback over! Haynes is keeping the ball! Haynes is come running all the way across to the bench. We just dumped it over 26-24. We just stepped on their face with a hobnailed boot and broke their nose. We just crushed their faces!"

Florida 2004: I have often called this one of the the happiest days of my life. We finally beat Florida (on my fifth and final try). Seeing pictures of this one and hearing Larry's voice can make me cry.

We are back on the 15 yard line, 3rd down. Gators in a 5, we're in an I. Fake, and he fires right down the middle! TOUCHDOWN! TOUCHDOWN! TOUCHDOWN! Fred Gibson called a ball running right to left. Greene hit 'em...Greene hit 'em with a 15 yarder. He was barely in bounds on that back sideline... on that back line. 30-21, Don't give up!"

As my love of Georgia football has grown, so has my father's. In recent years, he has picked up a habit that many Georgia fans have practiced for years: turning off the TV announcers and cranking up Munson. We hate to see you go Larry, but we'll never forget the joy that you have brought us. Hope the fish are biting!

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