The Tiger As An Official In The 1980’s
(Photo uploaded by Alan Cutts)Today’s photo is from a football game in the 1980’s with The Tiger hamming it up with the officials prior to the game.
The photo was taken at midfield pointing towards the south west area of the stadium. You can see in the far right of the picture the grassy hill between the South Stands and the West
If you look closely, you can see the structure that hung over that grassy hill that supported the handicap viewing stands. This area is no longer there as the West Zone encloses the stadium.
The primary handicap seating area is now on the other side of the stadium in the corners.
Also in the picture are the unique uniforms of officials in this era. Look at the stockings they are wearing, much like a baseball player. I always thought this looked absurd, and this picture reminds me that my thoughts on that have not changed!
You may or may not recognize one of the officials, but you will remember his story. Jim Knight is the official on the far right of the picture. He is the official that in 1997 collapsed with a heart attack during a game in Chapel Hill. Below is an excerpt from the Raleigh News and Observer about the incident:
The teams, a crowd of more than 57,000 and a television audience were shocked early in the second quarter when referee Jim Knight suffered a heart attack and collapsed. The veteran of 21 seasons was rushed to a hospital.
Knight, an official for 21 years in the ACC, was in critical condition.
Courtney Mauzy, an official watching the game on TV, drove from Raleigh to Chapel Hill--about 25 miles--and became the referee for the second half.
The stadium fell silent as medial team members completed CPR before quickly rushing Knight to the University Medical Center right across the street from the stadium.
Knight recovered from the heart attack and returned to officiating the next season.
Scott Rhymer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org