A fan in Dallas

Emailed this to me. Thought I would share with his permission.

My First Razorback Game, September 14, 1974

I was a “newbie” to the State of Arkansas, a Longhorn fan of sorts.

My Father in Law asked me to travel with him to Little Rock, to attend a Razorback football game. The #5 USC Trojans where coming to town.

We drove straight to the stadium from Fort Smith. We parked far away from the stadium in a field with what seemed be a vast ocean of decorated cars and people dressed in red. All of them Screaming and Yelling as if their life depended on their voices being heard in the opponent’s locker room. It was Intimidating to say the least.

We carried nothing with us, no one else did either. There was an ATTITUDE in the air!

As we walked towards the stadium (not in sight yet), the crowd grew larger and larger and louder and louder. It was like we would all stampede to the Stadium in seconds.

When got to the stadium… Razorback Nation had assembled outside the stadium. And just for the record (by the time we arrived at the stadium) I had purchased a Razorback HOG Hat, the one with a snout on it. I had a screaming red razorback shirt on. And was looking for anything else I could buy WITH A HOG ON IT. This awesome crowd, this awesome attitude was impacting me- how could it not!!

I had walked a mile plus with the most amazing football FANS ON PLANET EARTH. I WANTED TO BECOME ONE OF THEM…AND I DID.

Arriving at the Stadium, I looked up to see this old grand structure, it saying to me “WELCOME TO LITTLE ROCK AND RAZORBACKBACK STADIUM, YOU ARE ABOUT TO WITNESS HISTORY”. My body was shaking and baking- chills one might say. The crowd continued to grow and it got louder and louder and louder.

When we finally found our stadium seats, I was a baptized, hog calling, razorback fan. I had soda pop, mustard, onion, all kinds of food spilled on me both from the crowd and myself, but who cared! We were all there for something much larger than ourselves…I felt like nothing could stop us, this was Razorback Nation!

The Razorbacks beat UCS 22-7 that day. The crowd never sat down. The entire stadium constantly yelled “GO HOGS GO”. It did not matter if we just lost 15 yards or gained 15 yards, everything in that building embodied ARKANSAS- every yard. THAT STADIUM BELONGED TO EVERY ARKANSASAN. IT WAS AND IS OUR TEAM, OUT STADIUM, OUR BRICKS, OUR TURF, OUR MUD, OUR BLOOD AND OUR HEARTS WERE IN IT ALL THRU AND THRU. Visitors WERE just that -visitors. They were there with our permission, but they were not going to take home anything, anything from Arkansas!

The Razorbacks won that day. It was one of my life highlights to be there. I had never experienced such a gathering of single purposed “power” in a people. I know we became part of that team that day. Oh, what a feeling it was!

Let me say this about Arkansas. It’s people, good people. The land is ours; the buildings are ours; the schools are ours…THE RAZORBACKS ARE OURS; WE ARE RAZORBACK NATION!

BE THERE, BE PART OF HISTORY, LITTLE ROCK, I LOVE IT! WOOPIG!

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Great read!

I feel like fans today don’t come to be a part of the outcome. I understand it’s hard when our teams have been as bad as they have but even when we’ve had some good teams the fans mostly want to sit. There’s a beach ball. Then, the wave. Now all the announcements and piped in music. I’d love an experience in our current times like you’ve described. Thanks for writing!

wow! thanks for sharing, RD. almost got chills reading that. reminds me of being young at WMS.

GHG

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I was also at that game as an 11 year old. Spot on. I can verify those comments.

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Being from Houston should have been a ut or aTm fan, but summers as a kid on grandparents’ farms in Alma, parents being UofA alumni & uncles playing for AR, & endless Hog support everywhere brainwashed me die-hard Razorback. My 1st game being the '69 Shootout cinched my loyalty. Trips from DFW to NWA to visit my son at UofA, to attend games, & to tour the growing campus are still as exciting today. Hope the fan base unites behind the new coach & fans sellout Razorback stadium again in show of support.

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Unfortunately, I was already 30 years old when I attended that game. Started the season off with a bang but overall was not a great year. Had coach Broyles and some of the best offensive linemen to ever play for Arkansas. Also, had a great bow-legged running back and Dennis Winston.

I just finished reading Valorie Kondos Field’s book: Life Is Short, Don’t Wait to Dance. Valorie is the retired UCLA gynmastics coach, married to former Razorback Bobby Field. Bobby was a great defensive coach at UCLA, mostly as a defensive coordinator for Terry Donahue.

Miss Valorie, as her gymnasts called her, wrote in her book that she asked her players (or gynmasts) to run over to the crowd after they had finished getting their scores. She said that the fans would feel like they were part of the success of their team. And, they packed Pauley Pavilion, often times out drawing the basketball team. She said it was one of the keys to the success of her program, the great crowd support as they won seven national titles.

There were tons of interesting thoughts in her book, including her basic rules, some that she considered super important and some that she labeled as probably “not important” and others she knew were frivolous. But they were all rules.

1 - Early is on time, On time is Late (super important) – Anytime you are meeting someone, if you show up on time, you are late. Whey you care about a meeting, you are early. Being late is rude and tells the other person your time is more important than their time.

2 - No phones at team meals (super important) – She said she’s trying to break the habit of the smart phone generation that has become accepted practice. Having your phone out at a restaurant or meeting, implies you don’t have their attention. Even putting it face down, then turning it over later, is rude. It interrupts the flow of the discussion and signals you don’t have their undivided attention.

3 - No gum – ever (Kinda Super Important) – Gum chewing can be habitual to the point that a person doesn’t know they are putting it in their mouth. Put that right up there with biting nails, nose picking and picking a wedgie.

4 - No hair ties on your wrist (not important) – Seems silly, but if you are a female reading this, think about how often you have a black hair tie on your writst and you don’t even know it. It has replaced the wrist watch. It’s no offensive, it just should not be there.

5 - No sweat pants dragging the ground (Important) - I sympathize with the vertical challenges of gymnasts (short people). But if your pants are dragging the ground, cut them off or get them hemmed. I get grossly graphic when explaining the importance of this to our team.When walking from the dorm to the gym, they don’t know if their pants are dragging in spit, vomit or dog doo. It’s horrific to bring that filth into the gym.

6 - No belly or cleavage showing when traveling (Super Important) – No need to encourage ogling.

7 - No bows ever (Frivolous) – I know many female athletic teams wear bows. I personally feel bows are for young girls, not adult women, and especially not those in an athletic arena. This is a classic case of my team, my rules.

8 No Face Tattoos (Frivolous) – I’ve never understood why teams take beautiful women and make them less attractive with a face tattoo. I dont’ believe the face tattoo makes anyone more attractive. The school logo is already on the uniform. I don’t understand this phenomenon.

(Note, some of these passages in her book were a lot more lengthy than I put here, but you get the idea.)

As you can probably tell, I loved this book. There is rich material in here including what she thought of the Karolyis, including Martha, the coach of our Olypic team who trained the athletes at her ranch north of Houston. It’s a compelling read.

(Note: There is a chapter that she discussed message boards. There is one about college gymnastics. She once read it and then realized that it was taking too much of her time and she had become to care what others thought about her team or, worse, her. I think she even posted to them at one point. No more, she said. Have to understand that what others think about you is not important. And, that you must coach the way you think is best, without regard to what others think.)

I was at that game. that is how it was when The Razorbacks use to play football. Not sure why they gave up the sport. It was such a uniting factor for the state.

I thank the last game they played in AR was when they defeated LSU to go to the Sugar Bowl. Shortly after, they gave up the sport for some reason.

This is something I was slow to the party on. I have seen several things written about “no phones in meetings.” I got it, but also didn’t. I didn’t make that a rule. Starting next week, that is going to be a rule at my office. I know it is a “duh” and I should have already done it.

When we go to dinner, whether a family dinner or group dinner, the standing rule is the first person to look at their phone picks up the tab. (There is an emergency exception to the rule.) We all stay much more engaged and people have commented they have had more fun this way.

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I look forward to that day. I can’t because of my job.

The phone is with me at all times other than showering. If the phone rings or I get a text I get out and look.

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This is a key takeaway point. Sinatra made a living singing a song about “I did it my way”. That style of leadership or personality is difficult for many people to accept in today’s world as it is rare.

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I had to be back at work in Springfield. MO the next morning. I got home, took a quick shower, and went to work for 10 hours. But I was still running an adrenaline until about 3PM when I started crashing. That game is still one of my all time best memories. Dirt Winston was everywhere.

I didn’t get to go to that one. I was 10. My parents went, but took some of their friends instead of us kids! How dare they! :slight_smile:

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One of my favorite Hog games. Winston played as a man possed. Unfortunately, I remember Sam Bam Cunningham too.
My last year in Arkansas we played and lost to Stanford in Little Rock when they had Jim Plunkett at QB. Montgomery came up less than a yard shy of us winning that game. Montgomery and Dicus almost brought us back from a twenty point deficit. Two of my all time favorite Razorbacks. Wonderful years in Fayetteville.

I was at that game as well… remember Cunningham diving over the middle meeting Mr. Winston in mid-air. You could hear the the Thud up in the stands.

A bone crushing, bruising game indeed.

At that game also. Was awesome.

I’m sort of surprised there is no video link to this game. Couldn’t find one anywhere. I was only 7 when this game was played. I recall everyone being impressed the Hogs won.

The fans would not leave. We all just stood at our seats and yelled our heads off. The only other time I can remember that happening was the LSU game where Mallet, on the last play of the first half, instead of taking a knee, threw an 80 yard TD pass. We dominated in the 4th quarter for a big win and no one wanted to leave then either.