Valdosta Daily Times

Local Sports

December 30, 2013

Valdosta Football in the Movies


VALDOSTA — FORREST GUMP (1994). What!? "Forrest Gump"? A football movie? Wait. Wait. OK, "Forrest Gump" is not a football movie, but there is a football scene in it. Tom Hanks' Forrest plays for Alabama's The Crimson Tide. The Valdosta connection: Sonny Shroyer again. He plays legendary Coach "Bear" Bryant.

REMEMBER THE TITANS (2000). Another story based on real-life events. Denzel Washington plays a black football coach assigned to oversee a once-whites-only school's first racially integrated team. Coach Hermann Boone must overcome issues of race and prejudice, on and off the field, as well as creating a team that can win football games from this potentially volatile situation. Strong performances, great drama, and hard-hitting action in the game sequences. All based on a true story. A couple Valdosta connections: Denzel Washington visited Valdosta a few years ago to watch his son play a football game here. The Titans were second in the nation in 1971. That same year, the Valdosta Wildcats were first in the nation.

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS (2004). This was a book that became a movie starring Billy Bob Thornton that became a television series all with the same title. Author H.G. Bissinger based his book on time spent with the 1988 team of Permian Panthers in Odessa, Texas. With Thornton as the coach, this movie revealed the glory and the agony of playing high school ball in a football-crazy town. The Valdosta connection: The legend goes that since Bissinger wanted to write a revealing portrait on the struggles of high school football, he approached the nation's "most winningest" high school football team: the Valdosta High Wildcats. Legendary Wildcats Coach Nick Hyder reportedly turned down the offer to have a writer dissect his team, and Bissinger went to Odessa instead. Or so the story goes.

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Local Sports
  • Lowndes_McPherson.jpg Milestones on tap for upcoming season

    Some milestones are destined to occur, like when Georgia Christian hosts David Emanuel on Aug. 22 in the Generals’ first varsity football game since the late 1960s.
    Others will have to wait and see what continues to take shape come Friday when teams can begin fall practice, and especially Aug. 1 when teams can suit up in pads for the first time, such as can Valdosta win its record 24th state title, or can Lowndes capture its fourth state championship under Randy McPherson, or can Valwood and coach Ashley Henderson play in its third straight GISA state championship game?
    As we start to find out the answers to those questions in just a few short weeks — the regular season is just 31 days away — there should be a few more milestones for area coaches to mark 2014 right along with the Generals getting back on the gridiron.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • ACC_Jimbo.jpg Back on top

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • ACC_Petrino.jpg Petrino returns to Louisville for first ACC season

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Braves_Marlins JUpton.jpg Jones lifts Marlins past Braves in 10

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ant Smith.JPG Anthony Smith ready for new test in college

    Smith was a three-year starter as a Wildcat and quickly worked his way up as a leader on both the defense and the team as a whole.

    July 21, 2014 3 Photos

  • Wildcats participate in national 7-on-7 tournament

    The Valdosta High Wildcats have been working extremely hard this summer to prepare for the football season. Summer workouts and a plethora of 7-on-7 tournaments and competitions have kept the Wildcats busy.

    July 20, 2014

  • Valwood.jpg A Different Look

    With football summer workouts in full swing, occasionally the intensity and competitive drive can wane going against teammates. But on Friday, Valwood, Brookwood, Lanier County and Tiftarea Academy broke up the monotony by meeting at Goddard Field for a four-team, 7-on-7 passing league.

    July 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • pilcher.jpg Berrien competes in 6-team passing camp

    If Ed Pilcher had his way, Berrien High would never throw the football.
    But that doesn't mean the veteran coach doesn't enjoy the opportunity that a passing league, or the six-team passing camp at Cairo on Thursday morning, can provide his Rebels.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bubba Walker promoted to defensive coordinator

    Valdosta State Linebacker Coach Bubba Walker has been promoted to fill the open posiiton of defensive coordinator for the Blazer football team according to an announcement made by VSU Head Coach David Dean Thursday.

    July 18, 2014

  • Albritton wins NCAA Elite 89

    Courtney Albritton's tremendous 2013-2014 season earned her one more award Thursday night when the Valdosta State softball star won the NCAA's Favorite Elite 89 Winner contest by securing the more votes than any other student-athlete.

    July 17, 2014

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