Monday, September 22, 2008

Munson

Although I am a Michigan alumnus, I grew up a Georgia fan. This was mostly because a lot of my friends were Georgia Tech fans, but my mother went to UGA for her JD so I could claim some allegience to the red and black.

Following UGA football meant that you watched the game on TV on mute so that you could listen to Larry Munson call the game. There was a slight delay, so you would hear Munson's call and then see what happened about half a second later. It made for a slightly odd viewing experience, but after listening to Munson you realized how truly afwul the TV announcers were, so there wasn't really an alternative.

My most vivid memory of listening to Larry Munson was from the 2002 Georgia-Florida game. God, I hated Florida. At the time Michigan was on a 10-3-1 stretch against Ohio State, and I hadn't really learned to hate them yet. Tressel had beaten us the previous year, but I thought that was going to be an anomoly. I was a junior, and Michigan was definitely my team, but to be honest Florida still held its place as the worst school on the face of the earth.

Georgia's futile history in that game during my lifetime made this game extra important. UGA was undefeated, number 4 in the country, and Spurrier was finally gone. We had a chance.

For some reason, I was in North Carolina with my folks instead of in Michigan, and they didn't have a TV at their place. My dad and I were huddled around a little old radio he must have had since 1975 or something, listening to Munson call the game.

Georgia was struggling, but late in the 4th they had a shot to tie Florida. David Greene threw a pass downfield to Terrance Edwards, and I remember Munson's call went something like, "Oh my God, he dropped it. We had a sure touchdown over the middle of the field, and he dropped it." The anguish was palpable. Munson's voice had all the frustration of all those years wrapped up in it, and we all knew that the game was over. Georgia lost 20-13, the only loss of the season.

Larry is retiring. He was one of the best, and I'll miss him even though I don't really watch Georgia games much anymore. Here are two of the happier calls. I listened to each of these about three times in a row before I put up the links:

2 comments:

  1. Florida is like Biff from Back to the Future: some people are scared of him, and nobody likes him except for his dopey friend who wears 3D glasses even when a movie isn't playing. And even he might just be hanging around because he's scared not to.

    Then Biff/Florida tries to rape your past mom at the Enchantment Under the Sea dance, and you have to try to trick your past dad into kicking his ass even though he's a scrawny sci-fi obsessed nerd.

    Okay, I guess that's where the metaphor stretches too thin. I still hate Florida and St. Teabag.

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  2. In light of the game coming up...

    Georgia vs. Alabama, 2002
    GEORGIA 27, ALABAMA 25

    "Greene comes back, they're coming up behind him, he doesn't see them and he throws a long pass to Fred Gibson... WHO CAUGHT THE BALL!! He fell down, but he caught it on his back! Fred Gibson a sensational catch down on the goal line with Madison the corner with him.. caught it one handed, ball lying on his whatchamacallit. And Fred Gibson scores sliding into the endzone and its 13-3. My gosh, what an individual play and effort by Fred Gibson who turned around, came back a step to the ball, and fell backwards and caught it. David Greene meanwhile was being destroyed from behind."

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