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Born May 18, 1953; got saved at Truett Memorial BC in Hayesville, NC 1959. On rigged ballot which I did not rig got Most Intellectual class of 71, Gaffney High School. Furman Grad, Sociology major but it was little tougher than Auburn football players had Had three dates with beautiful women the summer of 1978. Did not marry any of em. Never married anybody cause what was available was undesirable and what was desirable was unaffordable. Unlucky in love as they say and even still it is sometimes heartbreaking. Had a Pakistani Jr. Davis Cupper on the Ropes the summer of 84, City Courts, Rome Georgia I've a baby sitter, watched peoples homes while they were away on Vacation. Freelance writer, local consultant, screenwriter, and the best damn substitute teacher of Floyd County Georgia in mid 80's according to an anonymous kid passed me on main street a few years later when I went back to get a sandwich at Schroeders. Had some good moments in Collinsville as well. Ask Casey Mattox at if he will be honest about it. I try my best to make it to Bridges BBQ in Shelby NC at least four times a year.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Heisman, Tide Glory and What it Really Means to be a Christian in Alabama

How do you reconcile the genuine nobility of the LA Times piece on Mark Ingram with Robert Parham's reservations about what it is to be a Christian in Alabama and how that falls short for some of the best reformists in the state including the folks at, FBC Auburn Pastor Jim Evans and the late Tom Corts, President at Samford.
When and how do their ideals filter down to the deacon board at Collinsville Baptist Church; or First Fort Payne and Guntersville or Dawson Memorial for that matter; not to mention their sister social and civic club friends among the Methodists, Presbyterians and Catholics.

Here is the great opinion piece my friend Robert Parham has written.
Study on it. What is wrong with the Tea Parties; and what role can Mark Ingram and Nick Sabah play in showing them the error of their ways?

Here is the great and deserving story from the LA Times; link with excerpt to follow.
There is truth in the movie the Blind Side; but Parham may speak a bigger truth.,0,4363215.column
The wrong guy won the Heisman.That's what I thought. That's what I screamed. The bronze man had been mugged by Good Ol' Boy bias, leaving reality rolling in a gravy-lined gutter.
It should have been Toby Gerhart.. The Stanford running back was the best college football player in the country. He was the most dominating running back, the most compelling offensive presence, the biggest creator of moments.

The Heisman went to the wrong man.Then, on Monday morning, I met that man - stocky running back from Alabama. Decent stats, lots of wins, familiar football name, Mark Ingram.During his acceptance speech last month, he was so genuinely surprised and touched, he wept, reportedly the first time in history that a college student has wept in appreciation of anything that wasn't gas money.During later interviews, he openly, painfully talked about his jailed father and, again, when is the last time your college-age son revealed anything that couldn't be explained in a grunt, a sigh or a syllable?He is only a sophomore, but his honesty and grace outstretched that, so I schlepped down to Newport Beach on Monday morning to meet him."I've learned just to be a good man," he said, looking small and thick in a dark, tight-fitting sweat suit. "Treat people like you want to be treated. Be the best man you can be. Better yourself as a person."

He was doing a group interview in advance of Thursday's Bowl Championship Series title game at the Rose Bowl between Alabama and Texas. The questions stalked. But the answers sang.He was asked about his father, former NFL star Mark Ingram, who is in jail for money laundering, bank fraud and failure to surrender."Just the fact I can bring that joy to him is real important to me," he said. He was asked what he misses about his dad, a former wide receiver who played 10 years for four pro teams and won a Super Bowl ring with the New York Giants. He said he talks to his father several times a week on the phone, when his father calls him collect, but it is obviously not the same.

"Him just not being there," Ingram said softy. "Not playing around. Not joking around. Him just not being there." He was asked about the failure-to-surrender charge, which resulted from his father's refusal to report to jail last year so he could watch Mark play in the Sugar Bowl against Utah. Just minutes before that game, his father had been arrested in a hotel room in his hometown of Flint,Mich. "It just shows what type of relationship we have, what type of bond we have, that he sacrificed so much for me," he said. "You've got to appreciate that."Ingram answered the tough questions, he answered the silly questions, and he even explained the important questions, such as how he deals with everyone who now greets him in the famous Heisman Trophy pose.

"With older guys, it's kind of funny seeing them do it," he said. "I've seen girls do it, little kids do it, grown men do it, some people put up the wrong leg . . . people put up two wrong legs, the wrong arm."He smiled. "I help them out," he said with a laugh.
I could imagine him doing that in some airport lounge or mall breezeway, showing somebody how Heisman hangs, this unassuming sophomore with the easy grin and humble embrace of the moment. And it was then I realized, you know, it was the closest vote ever, and Gerhart was still deserving, but, hey, the Heisman is in good hands. Or, at least,on a good table.That's the last place Mark Ingram saw his.

"At my mom's house, it was on the kitchen table, on the middle of the kitchen table," he said, smiling. "She said she was going to buy something for it. . . ."So much for the laugh. Now, about those acceptance-speech tears. . . . Ingram said he couldn't remember the last time he cried."Probably, like, when I got a whupping," he said. He said he barely remembers this time, even when he watches video clips of his emotional speech."I just remember [the presenter] reading the card and my heart beating out of my chest," he said. "I'm looking at [the video], I can't believe that happened, I can't believe I was crying. I don't remember it, I was in the moment. It's a feeling you can't really explain."You know what's really cool? His teammates felt it with him.
Nick Saban can preach all he wants about coaching his guys to be robots, but when it comes to supporting Ingram, the Alabama players seem wonderfully human, all of them celebrating the school's first Heisman winner -- amazing, huh? -- as if it were their own."When he won it, my mom and dad were breaking out crying, and I'm not much of a crier, but I was holding my bottom lip," quarterback Greg McElroy said. "To see a guy that grateful, how can you not admire it?" Colin Peek, the Crimson Tide's tight end, couldn't help himself either. "I actually sent him a text message and I was like, 'I don't want to admit this, but I actually shed some tears with you up on that stage,' " Peek said, later adding, "It was almost a shock. It was someone showingsuch raw, genuine emotion that you almost loved the presentation even more because of that feature.

Click on link for rest of Ingram piece


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