Sunday, December 6, 2015

The Freakin' Weekend (1969)

Sorry this is late in posting. It has been a busy time in 1969 ...





No. 1 at No. 2 on today, Dec. 6, 1969 ... whoa, Nelly! ...





Rich 1969 Hoptown me bought this week's Sports Illustrated, and it included this big Astro Turf insert about the big game ...


I haven't been a very good UK fan yet this season; maybe it's just that I'm still just heartbroken over Mike Casey's injury.  I've got to start paying attention ...


Just nineteen more 1969 shopping days ...



It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas on TV, too ...

 


78 comments:

  1. By the way, I'm switching back and forth between the radio and TV audio on this Texas-Arkansas game.

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  2. Here’s what 1969 me wants to know about college football: Why don’t we have a big playoff tournament like we do in college basketball?

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    1. Yeah, that's real exciting. In basketball, they give the trophy to UCLA every year. This way, you lose one game and you're out. Much more fun.

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  3. The radio host gives us a bunch of visual detail on the scarlet Arkansas and white-with-orange-trim Texas uniforms and then the school mascots.

    Ah, here comes President Nixon!

    Connie Alexander of the Humble Oil Southwest Conference Radio Network: “Can you imagine the tension in those 22 lads on the field today?”

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    1. This is a big moment in the now famous -- or infamous -- "Southern Strategy" by Nixon to pick up votes in the South.

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  4. On ABC, Chris Schenkel says the Texas offensive line is probably the best in the country.

    But that doesn’t keep Texas from fumbling before President Nixon can even get to his seat at Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville, and the Razorbacks’ 4-4-2-1 defense (says Connie Alexander on the radio) is all over it.

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  5. Sports Illustrated ought to put together a big national college-football tournament, kind of how the Chicago Tribune is all into the all-star game against the pro champions.

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  6. Arkansas takes over at the 22 and then throws to the 2. On ABC, Bud Wilkinson isn’t sure that the receiver was in bounds. “Texas is hanging on by a thread,” says radio Connie. Bill Burnett, the Southwest Conference’s leading rusher, leaps over the line for the score, and the underdog Razorbacks lead, 7-0.

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  7. Bud Wilkinson, who coached Texas coach Darrell Royal at Oklahoma, is still hacked that the Arkansas pass down to the Texas 2 was ruled a completion.

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  8. And now Arkansas intercepts Texas on the very first Longhorn pass!

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  9. Well, apparently, the rest of this first half has simply disappeared. Neither the radio nor the TV version of the broadcast has the rest of the first half. The score remains 7-0, Arkansas.

    Chris Schenkel has a halftime interview with President Nixon. The Humble Oil Southwest Conference Radio Network has an interview with the “Centennial Queen.”

    President Nixon throws some love for Penn State as a national-title contender, regardless of the winner of today’s game. And now he suggests, “Maybe we should have a ‘Super College Bowl’” to determine the champion.

    Which brings us back to the big SI playoff …

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    1. Nixon is following the Southern Strategy, but he also understands the importance of rural Pennsylvania to a GOP Presidential candidate.

      Penn State went undefeated in both the 1968 and 1969 seasons. In both years, they won the Orange Bowl and finished second in the polls. These seasons put Penn State on the map and made Joe Paterno famous.

      But the Nittany Lions were never seriously considered for the national title because their schedule was regarded as too easy. Here's who they played in 1969:

      9/20/69: Penn State 45, Navy 22
      9/27/69: Penn State 27, Colorado 3
      10/4/69: Penn State 17, Kansas St. 14
      10/11/69: Penn State 20, W. Virginia 0
      10/18/69: Penn State 15, Syracuse 14
      10/25/69: Penn State 42, Ohio 3
      11/1/69: Penn State 38, Boston College 16
      11/15/69: Penn State 48, Maryland 0
      11/22/69: Penn State 27, Pittsburgh 7
      11/29/69: Penn State 33, N. Carolina St. 8
      1/1/70: Penn State 10, Missouri 3 (Orange Bowl)

      Missouri was the only top-10 team Penn State played all year. They were number 6. W. Virginia (ranked 17) was the only other ranked team played by Penn State.

      Of course, now Penn State plays a really difficult schedule, but I miss their games against schools like W. Virginia, Syracuse, Boston College, and Pittsburgh.

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  10. Each week, SI appears to run a “Football’s Week” column by one William F. Reed that is organized into five sections: East, West, Southwest, South and Midwest. For each section, SI proposes a top three.

    My proposal would be that SI invite each of its five year-end top threes, plus a wild card—no! Make that a small-college national champion into a 16-team tournament culminating the with the President Nixon Super College Bowl. Maybe all of this would go on after or before the traditional bowls, or maybe it would overlay them or be played in place of them. I don’t care—something.

    Anyway, per the Dec. 8 Walt Frazier SI, which was published before the Dec. 6 games, the top threes were Penn State (10-0), West Virginia (9-1) and Dartmouth (8-1) in the East; Southern California (9-0-1), California-Los Angeles (8-1-1) and Stanford (7-2-1) in the West; Texas (9-0), Arkansas (9-0) and Houston (8-2) in the Southwest; Louisiana State (9-1), Tennessee (9-1) and Auburn (8-2) in the South, and Ohio State (8-1), Missouri (9-1) and Michigan (8-2) in the Midwest. North Dakota State is going to win the Camellia Bowl, so there’s your 16th team. Then you blind-draw the whole deal and blind-draw the thing again after each round of the Sports Illustrated College Football Invitational Tournament, until you have a President Nixon Super College Bowl champion.

    This would be really great.

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    1. You should play it off on "Bowl Bound." Or "Goal!"

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  11. Oh, man, Texas fumbles the opening kickoff of the second half! (It’s actually the third opening kickoff of the second half, as there were penalty replays on the first two tries.)

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  12. But Texas smothers the Arkansas try, pushing the Razorbacks back out of field-goal range. Arkansas punts to the Texas 20, and the difference remains 7-0 in favor of the Razorbacks. So, that’s at least three turnovers from the No. 1 team in the nation, and No. 2’s lead remains a single touchdown.

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  13. And yet another Texas turnover! Arkansas, still leading 7-0, takes over at its own 47.

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  14. This time, the Razorbacks capitalize … 29-yard touchdown pass from Bill Montgomery to Chuck Dicus, and, with Bill McLard’s kick, it’s 14-0, Arkansas, with 9:06 to go in the third quarter.

    If I were President Obama, I would pass a federal law that all of the old broadcasts at YouTube have to include their original commercials.

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  15. My gosh, here’s another Texas turnover. Arkansas takes over after an interception at its own 24. 7:52 to play in the third …

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    1. OK, Arkansas, put them away. Go, Razorbacks!

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  16. 3:04 in the third ... "an upset in the making," Chris Schenkel says ... Texas ball ...

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  17. End of three quarters ... still 14-0, Arkansas ... Texas has moved past midfield, however ... the Longhorns' Wishbone Y (see Bud Wilkinson's crack explanation) is starting to deliver some pretty heavy body blows to the Razorback defense

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    1. Look at these scores:

      1962: Texas 7, Arkansas 3
      1963: Texas 17, Arkansas 13
      1964: Arkansas 14, Texas 13
      1965: Arkansas 27, Texas 24
      1966: Arkansas 12, Texas 7
      1967: Texas 21, Arkansas 12
      1968: Texas 39, Arkansas 29

      Texas/Arkansas was the Miami (Fla.)/Florida State of the 1960's.

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  18. And now Huston Street's dad keeps on the option and plows in for a two-point conversion! It's 14-8 now, with 14:47 to go.

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    1. I have a really, really bad feeling about this.

      This is exactly how FSU always lost to Miami back in the 1980's.

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  19. Hey, not only is President Nixon at today's game, so is Col. Sanders!

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  20. Arkansas mounts a strong drive back down the field, but Texas's Danny Lester intercepts in the end zone. The top-ranked Longhorns, trailing 14-8, have the ball ...

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  21. But another Texas turnover returns the ball to Arkansas. Street, under pressure in the option, pitches high. The ball is bobbled, and the Razorbacks recover ...

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    1. YEAH! OK, now we have to score. Please!!!

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  22. 7:40 to go ... Arkansas ball at its own 42 ...

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  23. But another three-and-out for the Razorbacks, and Texas takes over at its own 36 ...

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    1. I really hope I had the strength to turn off the TV at this point.

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  24. 4:47 to go, and Texas has a fourth-and-2-plus situation at its 44 ... they'll give it a go ...

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  25. Oh, my gosh, STREET THROWS DEEP! ... AND IT'S COMPLETE! ... some Texas receiver pulls in an over-the-shoulder catch, just behind two Arkansas defenders ... Texas is at the Arkansas 13!

    "That was courage, Chris," says Bud Wilkinson, "putting your game and the season on that one play and going for the big ball."

    ABC got lucky enough to locate a coed clarinet player with a nervous face before commercial. They came back to her from the break, and she was furiously chanting, "GO! ... GO! ... GO! ..." And then they come back to her after the completion, and she's almost in tears of relief. It's really great.

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  26. Later today 1969, ABC has a Sonny Liston fight on Wide World of Sports.

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  27. Before that last play, Connie Alexander says on the Humble Oil Southwest Conference Radio Network that he "put on the binoculars to see what Street might be thinking about doing as he talks to Darrell Royal." But even Connie with his binoculars didn't see that bomb coming; he sounded every bit as genuinely surprised as the rest of us.

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  28. Radio Connie: "A FORTY-FIVE YARD GAIN ON FOURTH-AND-2! HOW ABOUT THAT FOR STRATEGY!"

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    1. Well, let's just all celebrate Darrell Royal for awhile.

      HOW CAN YOU CREATE SIX TURNOVERS AT HOME AND STILL LOSE?

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  29. Per my Monsanto Astro Turf schedule card from Sports Illustrated, the pass catcher was No. 40, Randy Peschel.

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  30. Replies
    1. Another big day for Dan Jenkins's buddy.

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    2. Are Darrell Royal and Dan Jenkins big buddies?

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  31. Texas's Ernie Koy runs to the Arkansas 2 ... Jim Bertlesen for the score ... 14-14 ... Here's Happy Feller! ... "Bingo!" says Connie Alexander ... 15-14, Longhorns, 3:58 to go ...

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  32. Chris Schenkel calls football turnovers, "errors."

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  33. And it's not in the way that a football announcer will sort of borrow a baseball word, and it's clear they're doing so playfully (a tackler "whiffs" or whatever). He uses "errors" for turnovers as though it's the word you would find on an official scoresheet for a football game.

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  34. Arkansas now faces a fourth-and-1 near its 30 ... plunge for the first ... 2:37 to go ...

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  35. Schenkel: The Razorbacks' Bill Burnett, who just picked up the first, "has had a great day moving the ball today on the Astro Turf."

    Schenkel also calls Arkansas, "a great place to visit."

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  36. 1:51 to go ... Arkansas first at the Texas 46 ...

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  37. To the 38 ... time out, Arkansas ... the Razorbacks still have one time out left ...

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    1. I know exactly what I would be doing here. I would be standing in front of the TV with one foot aimed toward the kitchen -- pretty sure that Arkansas is going to lose, but not wanting to leave in case they end up kicking a field goal.

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  38. Schenkel uses the break to thank the Arkansas and Texas sports-information directors, Jim Bell and Jones Ramsey, and others in the athletics departments of both schools by name.

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    1. I always liked Chris Schenkel.

      From Wikipedia:

      Chris Schenkel also did play-by-play (with Bud Wilkinson providing color commentary) for the legendary 1969 Texas vs. Arkansas football game, known as the "Game of the Century", culminating the first 100 years of College Football in 1969. The game, also known as the "Big Shootout", garnered a share of 52.1, meaning that more than one half of the televisions in the United States were tuned in. Years later, Schenkel said "it was the most exciting, most important college football game I ever televised". Schenkel went on to broadcast many more huge games, including the celebrated Nebraska-Oklahoma match on Thanksgiving Day 1971, as well as the Sugar Bowl national championship showdown between Notre Dame and Alabama on New Year's Eve 1973 (with Wilkinson and Howard Cosell, in a rare college football appearance). Schenkel was replaced by Keith Jackson as ABC's lead play-by-play man for college football telecasts in 1974, but continued to call college football games for several more years.

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  39. Weird. Connie Alexander does same thanking by name on the radio--but in the previous time-out break, before the fourth-and-1 Burnett plunge. Maybe that's where Chris Schenkel got the idea.

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  40. Connie Alexander pointed out before the interception that the Arkansas kicker, McLard, once hit from 56 yards in high school, but/and the Razorbacks were headed into the wind.

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  41. Radio Connie during the commercial break before the interception: "From scenic Fayetteville, Arkansas--30 miles from Oklahoma, 40 miles from Missouri and in an ocean of frenzy--this is Connie Alexander with Stan McKenzie and one of the greatest confrontations in the 100-year history of college football."

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  42. Connie Alexander: "Arkansas's hopes are dying."

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  43. Final: Texas 15, Arkansas 14.

    "Now the Longhorns will have the inside track for the national championship," says Connie.

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    1. What a huge disappointment. Now I'm really glad Arkansas didn't win it all in 1964 or 1965.

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  44. Here's Bill Flemming in the Texas locker room as Darrell Royal and the boys finish up the Lord's Prayer.

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    1. I liked him, too.

      From Wikipedia:

      After graduating from Michigan, he went to work for WWJ-TV in Detroit in 1953 [2] and later appeared on NBC's Today Show before joining ABC's Wide World of Sports in 1961.[3] He was the original voice of the Detroit Pistons, calling their radio broadcasts from 1957 (their first season in Detroit) to 1962. While with ABC, Flemming covered over 600 events for the program, including college football, golf and cliff-diving.[1] One of the assignments he cherished broadcasting was the Michigan-Ohio State football game since Flemming was a Michigan graduate.[3] Other sports that Flemming called on Wide World of Sports were bobsledding,[4] chess, auto racing and the Olympic Games.[3] His first event called on ABC was the Drake Relays track and field event in Des Moines, Iowa while his fellow broadcaster Jim McKay called the Penn Relays athletic event in Philadelphia.[5] While at NBC, Flemming also called the US Open golf tournament in 1957.[5] It was Flemming's reputation for tact and persistence that made him the go-to man in interviewing the reclusive Bobby Fischer during the 1972 World Chess Championships in Reykjavík, Iceland when Fischer was competing against defending champion Boris Spassky of the then-Soviet Union.[2]

      Flemming was the first voice of the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Championship on television.

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  45. OK, the end. That was fun.

    Now I need to switch off and see what's up with the pro football for this weekend 1969.

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