Counter Last Run to Glory

Last Run to Glory

By Don Henderson   

Return To Blake's Art

5/18/2000

 

 The thrill of watching a touchdown excites everyone, including me, especially if the T.D. involves number one. As I lined up in the backfield, I could hear music. I could hear distant muffled yelling on the sidelines that seemed almost unreal. Concentrating on the task at hand; I had told myself, OK, you’ve got to see the field, don’t run into someone, don’t fumble, don’t fall down. Come on legs, don’t give out.” My heart raced as I thought about the run. I could hear pounding in my ears and tightness in my chest. All of this was reminding me that maybe I should have just said, “No”, but there was no backing out now. My quarterback had announced, “Quick, count!” I suppose everyone else knew what this meant. I was thinking, “Is he going to say, down, set, set, or just down?” I wanted to ask, but didn’t. My mind began to wander and ponder too many things. Did I pull something when I warmed up in the locker room? Would I be able to run in “full uniform”? My quads felt very tight. Earlier that afternoon, I had spread myoflex from just above my waist half way to my ankles. My wife saw me and wanted to know if my hemorrhoids were hurting. I said, “Yea, but this is myoflex to loosen my muscles. My hams were really tight. We had made the practice run on Friday and I’ll tell you this. Practice may make “perfect”, but practice “once” makes you very sore. As we were doing our usual chores on Saturday, I reflected to my wife that I was concerned about mowing the lawn. I might hurt my back before the game that night. She graciously agreed to mow so I would not get hurt. (Should have thought of this before!) I was now aware that Montgomery, the quarterback, was barking signals. I stood half crouched, almost chimpanzee like. “Oh! I think he called the play!” Come on legs don’t fail now. Brain heard, but my feet didn’t. Remember the coaching. “Left elbow up, right hand underneath. Take the hand-off, don’t fumble. Go right. (Don’t fall down! Don’t drop that ball!) Then I was off. I forgot about “seeing the hole”. Hey, I didn’t really see anything. I was aware that I had the ball, and that I was supposed to keep my legs pumping. I tried that. It felt like I was standing still in thick, waist deep mud. I was quick… the first 15 yards. A vague awareness of bodies around caused me to elude several ghost-like figures groping in the dark for me. I floated, dream-like, without really seeing. It was as if a thick fog surrounded everything. My glasses fogged up. Avoiding almost invisible pursuers, more by accident than planning; I crossed through the thick fog. Am I ever going to reach the goal line? An eternity passed. Finally I “out ran” all of my would-be tacklers and crossed the goal line. Before the game, suggestions had been made about how I should act after I scored. A “White Shoes Johnson” dance with a fancy waggle? Everything became blurred. I started to kneel, changed my mind, spiked the ball and then kneeled. By this time I could see again. It was like someone had lifted a veil. I had scored!! Oblivious to external things, I think I heard, “Take your helmet off!” This wasn’t easy! After struggling for what seemed forever, I managed to get it off. As I waved to the crowd, someone told me to go to midfield. Then I was aware of applause and I heard the announcer say something. I turned toward my team and gave the high sign.

          My last run to glory came during the 2000 Black and White Scrimmage. We were celebrating Leonard George’s retirement as Athletic Director. The announcer was speaking about my retirement after 27 years of service with Spring I.S.D. I have taught and coached 37 years and it had been more than 40 years since I had even had a uniform on, much less score a touchdown! My “last run to glory” was terrific. I want to thank all of the football coaches at Spring High school, the entire staff, and the entire great group of Spring players that opened up the holes and let me slip through. The kind group of Spring defenders had well rehearsed their best “Houston-Buffalo game” tackling. It was indeed a great thrill for me, as well as an honor and a privilege. The trainers were outstanding in getting me equipped and supplying me with a Doak Walker # 37. My “last run to glory” was a complete and thrilling experience. There is nothing like a touchdown to exhilarate you. Thanks Sonny and staff.  

Note: I had almost forgotten how to put on a football uniform, as it had been since my last football season of 1956 at Malakoff, High School. Well, I take that back, I did play fraternity football in the 60's at Lamar Tech as an 8 man player. During one Malakoff workout, I still remember tackling Joel R with no helmet on (me not him, IT REQUIRED STICHES) and Sonny Humphries tackling Don J while he was walking back to the huddle, but Sonny never quit!!

 

 

  • If you scroll the PDF file you will find all kinds of interesting things. I was looking for Kern Tips and found the History of Humble Broadcasting written Sept 12, 1958 in the Malakoff News.

  • Also, to my surprise in the 20 years ago section, the announcement of my birth. Wow!! What a surprise that was!! Not that it was in the paper, but the fact that I accidentally stumbled on it.

  • Also, there is a "Liz's Listings" that is interesting.

  • Look for the Tigers vs. Mabank game. This was the year after I graduated.

  • Look for the article about the Robertsons

  • Look for the article about Robert Brannon

 

  • Click here to see

    TAKE ME BACK TO THE 50'S

     

     

     

     

         

     

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