Today we move into the top 20 of the best games to have ever been played in Bearcat Stadium. Having started at number 50, we've been counting down, obviously, for 30 days as we move through the calendar and to the start of the 2017 season, which will be the 50th at the Home of Champions.
Breaking into the top 20 is the first visit from Paris to the stadium, in the inaugural 1968 season, a game the Bearcats won, 26-20.
Why was this game chosen? Again, it was the first season at the stadium. There were no playoffs that year and the Bearcats came in 5-5. They had also gone 2-3 at home to that point so they needed a win to both reach .500 at home, and to finish above .500 on the season. Mission accomplished.
What do I remember? I was 4, at least that's what they tell me, so I'm not sure I really remember that.
What does Jim West remember? The year before, we went to Paris undefeated in conference and they beat us. This year we had lost three games in the first half of the season by a total of 9 points so we were out of the conference race and they would win it if they beat us. Coach Bradley, who was a great motivator, told us we deserved to go out a winner. There were no playoffs then so this was the last game.
Interestingly, by today's system we would have been in the playoffs. We were much better at the end of the year so who knows? Our class was Coach Bradley's first sophomore class. He and Mr. (Cy) Underwood came together. When we were in junior high we had to share a jersey with a high school player. We wore equipment over 20 years old. Coach Bradley, with Mr. Underwood's support, changed all that. They stayed until they retired and established something that has lasted. I played with a great group of guys. That was a special time.
What happened? David Lasiter threw Ted Short a touchdown pass to start the scoring that night but it would take three second half touchdowns put an end to the Eagles title hopes because Paris would take a 20-6 lead. Two Tom Ziegenfelder touchdown runs and a touchdown by Carl Friddle put Paris in control.
The Bearcats matched those three touchdowns with a 1-yard run by Lasiter, a 38-yard fumble return for a touchdown by Short and the winner, a Laister to Buddy Goodwin touchdown pass.
Tomorrow for number 19 we’ll pull one out of the fire on offense.