The year was 1982. West Georgia won the NCAA Division III national championship beating Augustana 14-0 in the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl in Phenix City.
Phenix City hosted the Stagg Bowl for fifteen years at what is now called Garrett-Harrison Stadium.
The Stagg Bowl brings back special memories for me. I covered the event as a local sports anchor in the late 70's and early 80's.
The history of the Stagg Bowl still lingers in the air around the stadium even today. The late Phenix City Councilman Max Wilkes shared his memories of the Stagg Bowl with me four years ago when this story first aired.
For thirteen years Max was the electric clock operator for the TV network carrying the game. For many years that was CBS.
Max recalled, “Back then the clock was kept on the field, so you moved up and down the sidelines with the football.” Wilkes remembered one of the officials letting him eavesdrop on the conversations among the TV production crew which was enlightening.
One of the most memorable finishes for Wilkes was in the 1976 Stagg Bowl between Towson State and St. John's, which St. John's won 31-28. “They lined up for a field goal and kicked it, and as the ball went through the uprights time expired.”