I like to believe that every one of us is born with a certain purpose in life. The thing we were put here to do. It takes many of us years to finally figure out what that purpose is. But when you do, well, it’s a magical moment.
Tra Battle of Forsyth, Georgia found his purpose in life on November 11, 2006. That was the day when Tra found out that his purpose in life was to make Auburn quarterback Brandon Cox's life utterly miserable for just a little while.
I have a couple of thoughts about that 2006 Auburn game. For one, it was a good reminder that when you're on the road as an underdog you must take advantage of every break you get. And if you do, you can inflict obscene damage against good football teams. There are few things more dangerous for an SEC squad than the dreaded 11 AM kickoff against a visiting opponent. In the same way that most accidents happen in the home, many truly bewildering upsets in this conference happen in those early, empty stadium, trap games. Georgia pounced early, Auburn never punched back, and the Red and Black had essentially salted this one away before it ever got started.
Second, it was a good reminder that football seasons have a way of turning around unexpectedly. That UGA team was coming off a farcical lost to Kentucky and had suffered a bad loss to Vanderbilt earlier in the season. They also pulled out, thanks to gentleman Joe Cox, the most unsatisfying victory over a major conference foe I have ever personally witnessed within the confines of Sanford Stadium, a 14-13 win over Colorado that is the yardstick by which I still measure “listless” college gridiron performances.
But Georgia’s 37-15 road pasting of the #5 ranked Plainsmen was the first of three straight wins over top 20 teams to finish out a nine win season (along with #16 Georgia Tech and #14 Virginia Tech in the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl). in that small part, we saw at the end of that 2006 season the building blocks of what would become an absolute buzzsaw of a team by the end of 2007. But the turning point was almost certainly Tra Battle personally and thoroughly eviscarating Brandon Cox live on Jefferson Pilot television with God and all three Daves watching.
Thank you, Tra. And .....