Gladiator Outlasts Viking

Amidst all of the crazy stats surrounding Brett Favre’s consecutive regular season starts coming to an end last night is one that caught my eye:

There are two active players who were on NFL rosters when Favre made his first start: kickers John Kasay and Jason Hanson.

First off, congratulations, John Kasay, on outlasting the energizer bunny. If you’ll recall, Kasay was a kicker at UGA. But before that, he was a kicker at Clarke Central High School, home of the Gladiators, and also the high school I attended.

This bit of trivia reminded me of another kicker at my high school: Eric Smith. One game in particular, springs to mind. I believe it was my sophomore year and we were playing a homecoming game against some team like Newton County. I don’t remember if it was Adrian Jarrell or Chad Whittemore who was our quarterback, but I distinctly remember Carlos Freeman was our star running back.

It was a shockingly close match for a homecoming game and as the clock ticked down to the final seconds, the Gladiators found themselves down, but in position to win it with a field goal. Only problem was, it would have been at least a fifty yarder. But sure enough, Eric Smith, who was also a star on our soccer team, lined up the field goal and nailed it.

I don’t recall just how long of a kick it was, but I do remember my friends and I comparing it to Kevin Butler’s “hundred thousand miles” game winner all those years ago against the Rockpetters.

Wow, that Gladiators game was at least twenty years ago and I can’t believe I remembered all of those names. Good times.

Go Gladiators and Go Dawgs!

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6 Responses to “Gladiator Outlasts Viking”

  1. Oh jeez…as if it wasn’t bad enough in high school that I had to drive my grandmother’s car, I had to study algebra and economics in the shadow of state powerhouse CCHS. Ugh. Go (ahem!) Jags!

    That being said, Kasay is a class act. I had the privilege of sharing a classroom with him during his last semester of college. He got a week to go to NFL tryouts while I spent spring break studying Greek Lit.

    He’s probably still jealous of me.

    • Ah, Cedar Shoals, home of, as we liked to think of it, our country cousins from ‘cross town. Man, we had some great games with you guys! Quentin Moses is still one of my favorite Dawgs, even though he was a Jaguar.

      Know how I can tell that I was on the side of the good guys during high school? I just remember Cedar Shoals’ team colors: orange and blue. 🙂

      Edited because I somehow managed to reverse Quentin Moses’ name. Apologies to all who might have been damaged in whatever way.

      • Jeff Pyburn, Amp Arnold, Quentin Moses, Carlos Strong are our Dawg flag bearers and broke away from the blue and urranjah mold pretty well. (Homer Jordan woulda been up there too but decided to go touch that rock). But we never could fully emerge from the shadow of Coach Henderson’s squads.

        Although I would note that the series has been closer to even once we stopped claiming Death Valley as our “home away from home” in 1987.

  2. Hey, hey take it easy on Newton County now buddy!

  3. Carlos Strong! Man, I haven’t heard that name in years! He killed us on the basketball court, even though we had Percy Eberhart (RIP). I remember being so happy when UGA signed Strong, mostly because it meant the Gladiators would never have to face him again, ever.

    We used to joke that it was only a matter of time before Death Valley was reconstructed to include the Billy Henderson Dome.

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