Maryland


 Terps  1972
(Game Worn)

 

 

Growing up in Maryland I remember this helmet and logo well.  The first football contest I ever attended was a Maryland/Villanova game.  I sat in the end zone with many of my childhood school friends holding a coke that was bigger than me.

I tried to watch the game between the heads of two really old guys; they had to be at least 40.  I could only see the scrimmage when the teams came close to scoring on our end of the field.  Us kids couldnít wait for a touch down; we didnít care who scored but those extra points were the highlight of the day, in fact a highlight or lowlight that has surface again when I saw this helmet. 

The snap, the hold, the kick, was it good?  All I remember is that football was coming right at those two old men in front of me.  As the ball quickly approached, it flipped off the tips of fingers in front of me and lands in my lap.  Possession was made and with in a few seconds a guy rips the ball out of my hands and starts running up the stadium stairs.   I was crushed; I came home and told my mom and dad the story.  Of course I got all the  itíll be ok, attention and ice cream that a little boy could want. 

Coming home from school that first Monday after the game my father had a surprise beyond belief.  My dad told his good friend and radio DJ Tom Gauger at WMAL about my plight. Tom Gauger told the story on the Radio during his morning show which my dad recorded and played for me.  With in the hour Villanova heard the story and had a signed game ball waiting for this little kid to come and get.  

Youíd think I would be ecstatic and overjoyed, but my little world was crashing down on me.  How could a little lieÖ.  just a little fibÖ how could this happen?  Oh the story was true, but it happened to the kid next to me.  The disappointment in my parentís eyes was overwhelming.  At 10 years old Iím sure I never apologized properly for the anger and embarrassment many had to go through.   

Most Helmet Hut readers realize this is not only about the helmet that one puts on for protection, it is about the stories and memories, some good and some not so good that these wonderful jewels, these great pieces of history dredge up.  Sorry Pop!