FanPost

At Times Like This, The Historian Goes to the Vault

Like most of you, I was downright depressed earlier today when I read the news of Michael Bennett. Our go-to guy with such sure hands was be-felled by a season ending injury. But, as has been reinforced through the comment threads, we’re not exactly scraping the bottom of the barrel for reserve receivers. Our 1a’s and 1b’s are simply gonna have to step up this weekend.

This will be my first "away" game of year – meaning, I’m not actually planted in a stadium, pacing and wringing my hands. While my car may be flagged, stickered, and heading east on I-20 Saturday morning with all the other Dawg fans, my destination is further south and east at beautiful Kiawah Island for the annual fall family trip. My incredibly understanding family has been advised that I’m to be left alone and unbothered with unfettered access to the bar at precisely 7pm. The outcome of this week’s game is more than just a season – it’s the difference between our umbrella/chair guy (who is a huge Gamecock fan) being insufferable for the rest of the week or his getting a good tip.

Be that as it may, before embarking on the madness of last-minute packing, I had to finish up some research for another project. While scouring through some online newspaper collections, this headline naturally ensnared my attention:

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via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net (Athens Banner Herald, October 3, 1924)

That’s right, exactly 88 years ago today, our Bulldogs/MASH unit were gearing up for a game against the Gamecocks, albeit at home on "Sanford Dell," as it was described. I don’t claim to have a Ben Crenshaw-like sense of fate, but even as a historian I get goose bumps when I’m doing research and come across material like this. Although we're not at the stage where we have to stack the dead and play the wounded this coming weekend, I thought this was pretty apropos.

The Bulldogs will enter the game Saturday minus some of their stars due to injuries received in the rough work this week. Buster Kilpatrick who suffered a badly bruised side in the Mercer game will more than likely start at the quarterback position though Buster has been unable to participate in the scrimmage this week.

Other Bulldogs were also stricken with injuries, including Charlie Weihrs and Jack Floyd. Another Bulldog suffered a death in the family, and his participation was going to be a game-time decision. In an article worthy of Larry Munson, the paper noted that reports from South Carolina’s stronghold indicate that the Gamecocks are in superb condition and are rearing for a crack at the Bulldogs. It should be a battle.

The results? Well, naturally, I had to skip ahead to the Sunday Edition.....

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via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net (Athens Banner Herald, October 5, 1924)

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via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net

The paper went on to report:

Georgia smashed over her first S.I.C. victory of the season Saturday afternoon when she tumbled South Carolina on Sanford Field, 18 to 0. The "Gamecocks" put up a scrappy fight in bowing before the heavier eleven of the Red and Black but they failed to develop the offensive they were heralded to pack in advance reports that came out of Columbia.

After being prodded by their coaches that they couldn’t take anything for granted in the game, the stalwarts of Kid Woodruff and Co., went about the business of playing football in a style that is usually rewarded with victory. With every man on his toes, the Bulldogs rushed into every gap left open by the opponents and soon after the first whistle blew they had rushed over their first touchdown by taking advantage of the breaks. In fact they turned disaster into success when they corrected their own mistakes and took advantage of their opponents at the very beginning of the game.


[The Gamecocks] came heralded as fine artists in the aerial game but most of their passes, and they hurled many a one, were grounded or landed in the arms of a Georgia player. But do not think all of them went awry. Some of them gained much yardage but towards the last of the game when they were hurling them right and left and over the center of the line…nearly all of them went for naught. Only once did the "Gamecocks" threaten to score and that was in the third quarter, which might be said to be their quarter, [when] they carried the ball by forward passes and penalties inflicted on the Georgians, to the very shadow of the goal posts but on a final attempt to hurl it across, a Georgia player scooped it up and saved the day.

The shutout was saved by none other than the injured Charlie Weihrs, who during the fourth quarter, intercepted a Gamecock forward pass and set up the final Bulldog score. The paper reported that many Bulldog stars shone in the game, including fullback J.D. Thomason, new halfback "Ikey" Sherlock, right-end "Smack" Thompson, and "Big Six" Luckey on defense.

The final "Bulldog-Bird" Stats:

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Bulldogs

Gamecocks

Final Score

18

0

Rushes

236 gross

210 net

22 gross

10 net

Passes

6 attempts

4 incomplete

1 complete

1 disallowed (penalty inflicted)

12 attempts

6 incomplete

3 complete

3 intercepted

Punts

10 attempts for 340 yards

8 attempts for 255 yards

Punt return

8 yards

35 yards

Penalties

110 yards

0

Let's just hope we can fix the incompletions and penalties before Saturday, but the rushing game looks excellent. The entire article is available here.

Go Dawgs!

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