IT WAS A WARM SEPTEMBER AFTERNOON when the Middleton High School Buffaloes walked out of the gymnasium toward the activity bus. The Middleton talk-radio sports personality, Billy Strange, predicted that the Buffaloes would finally break their ten-year losing streak against the Baine County Bucaneers from the adjacent county. The players were excited to finally get to play in their first game of the season after enduring spring practice and two-a-days in the unforgiving heat and humidity.

Even sports reporters from the larger metropolitan areas of the state predicted that the Buffaloes would make a serious run in postseason play. The Buffaloes were anchored on defense by sophomore defensive tackle, Simon Moss, who made a big impact during his freshman year, recording 80 solo tackles, sixteen of which went for a loss. Simon was only four months shy of his fifteenth birthday, but he could bench press over 400 pounds and ran a 4.8 in the forty. For his height and build, Simon was unbelievably fast from sideline to sideline. Simon stood six-foot tall and weighed 270 pounds, with a nineteen inch neck.

On offense, the Buffaloes featured star tailback, Medford Alton, another sophomore who placed third in the 100 meters at the state track meet during his freshman year, and already had the state long jump record of twenty-five feet. Alton was 6’2 and weighed 220 pounds, often drawing comparisons to Eric Dickerson for his upright running style. The local media were enamored with the young man’s smile, and his laugh reminded everyone of Eddie Murphy.

Aside from the sophomore players in the spotlight, the Buffaloes returned fifteen starters from the previous season’s six and four squad. Most of the alumni were hopeful that it would be the year that the Buffaloes would break their losing streak with the Baine County Buccaneers. The losing streak against the Buccaneers went back ten years, and all of the coaches had constantly reminded the players that it was time to break the losing streak. The last time that the Buffaloes had beaten the Buccaneers, head coach, Crawford Adams, was a senior in high school, playing defensive back for the Buffaloes. Back in 1980 when the Buffaloes dropped their first two games before running the table and winning the state championship, Crawford Adams had been the town hero, returning a ninety yard fumble recovery for a touchdown in the final three minutes of the game. During his senior season at North Middleton College, Adams had intercepted seven passes, four of which were returned for touchdowns.

Adams was a fiery coach who wore his emotions on his sleeve, and the players absolutely loved him because he had played defensive back in college, starting all four years at cornerback. In college, Crawford’s nickname had been “Killer.” Crawford was a small man by any standard, standing only 5’6 and weighing 160 pounds, but what he had lacked in size, he made up for with speed and tenacity.

Share: 
Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Reddit
Pin It
Embed

About Clifford K. Watkins


Follow
6 1
(RoTuN)Clifford K. Watkins, Jr., is a thirty-two-year old writer/poet/ rapper/lyricist/spoken-word artist originally from High Point, North Carolina. He currently lives in Jacksonville, Florida.
0 comments
Discussion
There are no comments yet...

Poem of the Week

Who Is Heat?

Story of the Week

BOMB

Poem of the Week

Who Is Heat?

Story of the Week

BOMB

Most Popular

Hillbilly Teeth