It's football season in Winnersville! Valdosta,Georgia is home to the winningest high school football team in the country. With 876 wins, 22 state titles, 6 national championships, and 41 regional titles, the Valdosta Wildcats have dominated high school football for decades. In recent years, the county school, Lowndes High School has won 3 state titles. When these two teams play, they call it the "Winnersville Classic".
Now, the college makes some noise! Valdosta State University has made it's football team a big part of the city of Valdosta. The VSU Blazers is a Division II school that started a football program in 1982. They've sent many players to the NFL - linebacker Jessie Tuggle (Atlanta Falcons). The Blazers have picked up players over the years who were not recruited by the FSUs or the Georgias of the world. Valdosta State has picked up players like Fabian Walker, who started at QB for FSU in the 2003 Sugar Bowl against Georgia. QB Dusty Bonner started for Kentucky, then he came to VSU to play. Recently, FSU's star player, Greg Reid was picked up by the Blazers for defense and punt returns.
Valdosta State has seen an all star cast in assistant coaches. Mike Leach (Texas Tech/Wash. St.) was VSU's offensive coordinator from 1992-1996. I remember a conversation Leach and I had, Leach said, "I want to be a big time head coach and spread the ball out like Spurrier." Well! Mike Leach did exactly what he wanted to do when coaching at Texas Tech. In those same years when Leach was coaching at VSU, Hal Mumme was the head coach. Mumme would go on to coach at Kentucky and New Mexico State. Alabama's defensive coordinator, Kirby Smart, was the defensive coordinator for Valdosta State from 2000-2001. Florida Gators' head coach, Will Muschamp, was the offensive coordinator for the Blazers in 2000. Nick Saban would soon after have both Muschamp and Smart coaching under him. I wonder if Saban knows where Valdosta,Georgia is?
Now, David Dean is the head coach of VSU. Coach Dean will try to win Valdosta's second D-II College Football National Championship. Dean has a 42-15 record over the six years he has coached the Blazers. Valdosta State will be playing Winston-Salem on Saturday for the D-II title.
One thing is for sure, they have something special down their in the city they call "Winnersville" - I know because it's where I was born and lived for 38 years. Go Blazers!!
Well, well, well, just when I was going to throw Valdosta under the bus one more time, you go and dig up some crap like this. This time, Stuart, you've put me in a bad head place, knowing I can't stand Valdosta and not much for that pampered, suburban boy, Nick Saban.
Any reasonable, unbiased person would send congrats to Nick for having made such sophisticated choices within his coaching staff (A+ for Coaching). Go BAMA ! But, Bret Michaels and myself both know every rose has it's thorn. Therefore, if Muschamp and Mr. Smarty Pants are such great coordinators, why would they leave a town who's nickname is Winnersville? hmmm... Guess the only thing they were coordinating was the GPS to head west.
No, Little Nick Saban doesn't even know Valdosta, Georgia exists. There are no flights, directly or connecting, between Bama Air and Valdosta Regional Airport.
Will Muschamp and Mr. Smarty Pants should give thanks to Dr. Ivan Getting, Professor Bradford Parkinson, and Roger L. Easton. They are responsible for the conception, creation and development of the Global Positioning System which they used to get the hell out of Valdosta, oops...Winnersville. As for them stopping in Alabama, that was a bathroom break and needed some toilet paper.