Blog Entry

Memories of 9/11

Posted on: September 11, 2008 12:09 pm
Edited on: July 31, 2011 10:43 pm
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I was feeling maudlin today about 9/11. The seventh anniversary of the tragedy no doubt is striking everyone different. 

I remember that day I was jogging, listening to Don Imus on my headphones. The I-Man got word that a "small plane" had crashed into the World Trade Center. From then on, everyone's life changed. My mind was swirling so much I immediately went into work mode, checking to see if conferences would cancel games.

Sadly, the SEC was the last conference to cancel its schedule. Then-commissioner Roy Kramer finally put out a verbose statement on honoring the dead, etc. That was on a Thursday less than 48 hours before games were supposed to kick. I clearly remember calling the Gainesville, Fla. hotel where Tennessee was going to play that week. A ballroom had been set up for a meal. Disgusting, I thought.

Nine days later we started playing football again. Nebraska and Mississippi State hosted games, kicking off almost simultaneously in the first games played since 9/11. I remember going into David Wade Stadium in Starksville having my bag searched for the first time. Guards were everywhere with loaded weapons. That was the mood of the day.

A couple of days later, I covered the Alabama-Birmingham-Army game for obvious reasons. The Black Knights were clearly distracted, knowing that a lot of them were about to head into battle. UAB won 55-3. But what I remember most was the class and heart Army had that day. Army's Dave McCracken was a Ranger about head off to war. Current defensive line coach Clarence Holmes was a player on that team.

Coach Todd Berry was fired a few years later but he will always be one of my favorites for his courage and leadership in those frightening days.

This is how I remembered it a year after in 2002.

This is how I remembered it two years ago on the fifth anniversary of 9/11.

 

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Comments

Since: Oct 19, 2006
Posted on: September 11, 2008 4:48 pm
 

Memories of 9/11

Thank you so much for writing this article. I am a student at the University of Michigan, and I'm currently taking a class on Sept. 11 so I'm paying a little more attention to the date today than most people are. I re-watched the news coverage, reliving freshman year of high school and the sheer feeling of helplessness. The one thing I've noticed just looking around campus and within my family is that many people have lost sight of what that day was and I was beginning to feel depressed because many people I know had even forgotten that today was the 11th. I've been battling feelings that the people of this country have been neglecting the heroes who gave their lives fighting the fires and attempting to rescue people from the wreckage. Once again, thank you so much for writing this. It was just the thing I needed to read.



Since: Feb 8, 2008
Posted on: September 11, 2008 3:13 pm
 

Memories of 9/11

Dawg:

Good on ya. Congrats. What branch? Where were you stationed? I still keep in touch via e-mail with a bunch of soldiers who are huge cfb fans.

 

dd




Since: Aug 9, 2008
Posted on: September 11, 2008 2:46 pm
 

Memories of 9/11

Dont worry about him Dodd.  I was wandering if I was going to get drafted before I could finish my degree.  I ended up going in the military anyway a year later but I got out and still graduated.  I actually was reminded that today was 9-11 by ESPN of all places



Since: Feb 8, 2008
Posted on: September 11, 2008 1:27 pm
 

Memories of 9/11

Just doing my job, dude. People cope in different ways. I didn't say I didn't feel for the country or the deceased.  My heart still goes out to the families. Chill.

 

dd




Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: September 11, 2008 12:46 pm
 

Memories of 9/11

So planes were crashing into the World Trade Center....and you were thinking about whether conferences would cancel football games? Either your story is horribly written or your priorities are way messed up.


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