The Celebration of Aaron Murray

Yeah, yeah; I know it's Hate Week (Part III). I know we're supposed to be spreading hate for our little brothers in Atlanta, and there is a bit of clean, old-fashioned snark near the end of my (admittedly long) poem. But this is the poem I've been holding in reserve, the poem that I knew I could rework into a Murray tribute when the time came. I tried to force this mentally a few times over the season, but this never came together--before now. So instead of focusing on Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate, I did what we Dawgs have been saying all week that we do--focus on ourselves rather than on Georgia Tech.

That being said, there's one thing (okay, so not just one thing, but only one thing I'm going to address here) I don't get about Tech: their obsession with calculus. I mean, a Dawg will say something about football success and a Techie will say something like, "But our players take calculus!" what? How many people actually ever use calculus in their everyday lives? Why is that some benchmark of great intelligence? What about, say, organic chemistry? Most of my friends who took both calc and organic said that organic was much harder. I'm sure there are other examples of really hard classes out there you could use as examples instead, so why is calculus so important? Would making our players take calculus help them be better football players? Better human beings? Better parents or employees? Here's my deep, dark secret: I never took calculus because [gasp!] I'm really bad at math. I can write poetry in my head, but I sometimes screw up even easy math problems. Feel free to brand me as a Grade-A (or F) dummy; I am good at two types of math, though: Understanding the numerous statistical records Aaron Murray's broken and reveling in the fact that most of the total points Georgia has scored in my (admittedly short) lifetime as a Bulldog fan have been more than the total points scored by Georgia Tech in those contests. And let's face it, folks: in '99, Sanks didn't fumble, and my keen mathematical abilities tell me that we win that game without yet another PWG call. And that last win was by a whopping 3 points, so my keen mathematical abilities tell me that was not exactly a blowout. Not that I'm saying wins by 3 points or fewer don't count and should not be celebrated, but talking about that ((((((((45-42)))))))))LOLOLOLOLOL victory y'all got over us 5 years ago to the day is incredibly pathetic.

Now that I got that off my chest, on to this poem. The original is called "The Cremation of Sam McGee" and was written by Robert William Service, which is fitting since I would like to thank Aaron Murray for his service to our team. His biographical page says that, "his most popular works were considered doggerel by the literary set," which sounds about like the equivalence of a group of Nerds telling Bulldog football players they need to take more calculus (picture below). Once again, the poem refused to format correctly no matter how many line breaks I tried to force; oh, well. With apologies to Service:

There are strange things done when they throw and run,

oh, those men in the red and black.

The football field does its stories yield

that take e'en vet'rans aback.

The Hedges green have many sights seen,

but one that lives on in memory

was the night in the crown of Athens town

we celebrated Aaron Murray.

Now Aaron Murray was in a hurry to escape the Sunshine State.

In my head, I know he says ‘tisn't so, but he's beat them three times straight.

He almost stayed home but desire to roam brought him under Athens' spell.

His style of play--even when just okay--led to tolling of Chapel Bell.

This opening day, the Dawgs stumbled their way to loss in Clemson's house.

Dawgs spent the next days in a miserable daze parsing the whys and the hows.

In spite of these lows, our Murray's blood froze; it was such a sight to see.

We put a lickin' on those chickens thanks to Aaron Murray.

We beat the Mean Green and were mighty keen to take on the Mad Hatter.

The Dawgs traded blows with our Western foes and came through when it mattered.

The talking heads all pulled for Mett, but ‘twas our Aaron Murray

who led the drive that kept Dawgs alive and o'ercame adversity.

The very next week awful havoc did wreak with our Dawg team's hopes and dreams.

We escaped Tennessee with a pyrrhic vict'ry and injuries measured in reams.

Mizzou came on in and pulled out the win o'er the Bulldog team's remains.

They took losses, too, but ‘twas nothing new--'13 is the year of pains.

The refs' assault was not Murray's fault that led to Vanderbilt's win.

What could the Dawgs do ‘bout that reffing crew that was filled with Wagers' kin?

With help from Gurley, Dawgs got up early and held on for victory

over the Gators-and all those haterz-who weren't benedictory.

We beat Appy State right out of the gate, winning forty-five to six.

This made Dawgs forget that this year of regret, we're sailing down the River Styx.

Our Murray, with his will and his consummate skill led Dawgs ‘gainst Tigers in comeback.

With a final run, he got the job done-our miracle quarterback.

But old Lady Luck--who had better duck if I meet her in dark alley--

took game out of our hands at some dark lord's demands and added to bad luck tally.

Aaron Murray's face in that unfriendly place showed he knew he'd seen the worst:

That this '13 season-beyond all reason-was undeniably cursed.

So there we stood to honor the good done by this year's senior class.

When they called Murray's name, a great roar of acclaim rained down on the green Sanford grass.

The game was good; the team did as it should and got up on Kentucky fast.

Murray was alight with the offense in flight, determined to live up his last.

The black in the stands shook their shakers in hands colored Bulldog red from applause.

Our QB was on pace to win the stats race, gaining yardage without pause.

Like a cosmic decree from a Greek tragedy, a defender hit Murray late,

ensuring his knee's ACL would be next victim of Bulldogs' bad fate.

He limped off the field after refusing to yield his place under center so quick.

With a coach at each side, our quarterback cried from Lady Luck's latest gut* kick.

All of us Dawgs in the stands, bars, and blogs couldn't blame him for shedding tears.

No matter our places, there were tears on our faces at this cruelest twist of cursed year.

But that next night, Will Friend saw a sight as he pulled up some Techie tape.

"Hey, Coach, I'm here," said Murray with good cheer. "I'll still beat Tech e'en with this scrape.

Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate this week does await, and losing is not an option.

Let's send little brother running back to mother, who'll put him up for adoption."

The Techies adore-more than game's winning score-to dwell on and talk to us

about player smarts and facts over arts and something about calculus.

"The only stats," I tell the Gnats, "that matter are total points scored.

You just feel free to point to degree and we'll again point to scoreboard."

There are strange things done when they throw and run,

oh, those men in the red and black.

The football field does its stories yield

that take e'en vet'rans aback.

In Bobby Dodd, we'll cheer on our squad,

but we will not lose the memory

of the night in the crown of Athens town

we celebrated Aaron Murray.

*I used the term "gut" here since this is a family-friendly blog, but I was actually thinking of another word or two that are less family-friendly.



Pictured: The Georgia Tech cheerleaders have a message for the Georgia Bulldogs players.

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