While we disagreed on college teams, high school was another matter.
Maddox served as public address announcer for Bruce, along with his son
Bryan, for over 20 years. The term “the apple does not fall from the
tree” is very fitting in this case.
By BRAD LOGAN
On the fall afternoon of Nov. 29, 2002, I was one happy fan. This was not a normal football afternoon. While glued to the television set, my eyes were fixated upon War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock, Ark. The Razorbacks and the LSU Tigers were vying for a chance to be crowned Southeastern Conference Western Division Champions and play in Atlanta for the SEC Championship the following week.
As the final horn blew, the Hogs escaped with a 21-20 win over the Tigers and their wish came true. As many of you know, I care not in the least for our neighbors to the West.
In fact, I consider them an outsider as they became a member of the SEC just 16 years ago. A dear friend of mine was happy, which explains my joy.
Happy is a simple adjective to describe many emotions in one’s life – a big win, a celebrated anniversary, watching your son make the big tackle or welcoming a new grandchild to the world. My friend was able to revel in the joy and zest for life I often envied. This past Tuesday morning, my friend Darrel Maddox was laid to rest.
Honestly, he had no choice. Born in Oden, Ark., the Hawg Nation was the clear choice of allegiance.
Each Sunday morning at church, following an Arkansas win in any sport mind you, Maddox would politely stroll to the back of the church and gloat. Actually, I grew to enjoy it. If you were not quite sure of his team of choice, he was donning his Razorback belt and tie to subdue any questions of loyalty.
It was common to receive a phone call following a Hawg win. A phone call that I would often receive and relish every moment of, while speaking in disgust while on the phone. All part of the banter that makes college sports what we all love.
While we disagreed on college teams, high school was another matter. Maddox served as public address announcer for Bruce, along with his son Bryan, for over 20 years. The term “the apple does not fall from the tree” is very fitting in this case.
When his son Bryan elected to step onto the field as a coach at BHS, things changed for the elder Maddox. Time to relinquish the microphone and become the spotter was his next move.
The nights as we served as arm-chair offensive and defensive coordinators were the norm– ones that I will deeply miss. Quite honestly, his spotting duties became very poor the last couple of years. With good reason no less. I would look to my right and await his reply to the person making the catch or who was stopped for no gain. No answer. All I saw was a smile that would light up a room that hasn’t seen light in years. In his arms would be one of his grandchildren, smiling ear to ear. Suddenly nothing else mattered. I began to spot for myself as I enjoyed the sight of life unfolding before me.
Every night of the big game, Maddox would enter the door of the press box and exchange pleasantries with the crew. Following a deep breath, tug at his pants and a pat on my back, the words always followed “It’s Friday night in Bruce, Mississippi.”
The seasons will change, the Friday nights will come and so will the 2008 football season. Unfortunately, my friend will no longer be sitting to my right. Luckily for us, his love, friendship and lasting impressions he left us on this earth will be honored and remembered forever.
You can email Brad Logan at email@example.com
or visit www.bradlogansports.blogspot.com