Saturday, September 6, 2008

Bom, bom, bom, bom, Big Red!


High School football is a huge event in our town, involving AstroTurf, an instant replay screen on the scoreboard, truly excellent ball playing, two squads of cheerleaders, the release of red, black, and white balloons at each game, and the very "Best Band in Buckeye land." These kids know how to rock! Enjoy:

video

And whenever our team scores, the enormous, rearing red stallion at the top of the score board spits real fire!

video
Correction: This fire-breathing stallion's name is not "Big Red," but Man o' War, taken from the legendary race horse of the 1920s. Thanks, Emily!

8 comments:

Emily said...

I'm going to have to tell this story to what I'm sure will be an incredulous audience on Friday, so this can be my rehearsal.

The horse's name is not "Big Red," but Man o' War, taken from the legendary race horse of the 1920s.

The name Big Red traces its roots to 1925. Until the '20s, Steubenville didn't have an official nickname; they were referred to as the "Stubbers" or "Stubs" (short for "Steubenville") and wore purple and white jerseys. Then, in 1925, Coach Cartledge ordered bright crimson jerseys with black stripes; because of the physical size of the team, the Herald-Star gave it the moniker "Big Red" and it stuck.

I believe 1945 was the year the Big Red horse came into existence -- a group of guys called the "Hustlin' Eight" started bringing a horse head to the games, and eventually Dave Hindman and Bill Davis rigged up a horse's head to breathe fire from atop the scoreboard. There's a photo somewhere of the Big Red horse burning the Massillon tiger in a game in the '60s.

Please tell me if you'd like to know more. ;-) (Because who doesn't like useless information?)

Emily said...

There are lyrics to the fight song, too...

These also I know.

Emily said...

Oh, what the heck:

Oh let us fight, fight, fight Big Red, let's fight
And raise our glory to the sky
The team will do its best, we'll do the rest
And cheer them with our cry, Rah! Rah! Rah!
Fight, fight, fight Big Red, let's fight
And come victorious through the fray
And we will shout Hail! Hail! Three cheers! Hooray!
For Big Red Steubenville.

(I know this because my mother's director, Anthony Violi, wrote it.)

Suzanne said...

Tell me all you know! I'm absolutely fascinated. And I will correct the name of the horse, too. Thanks so much for the info!

Emily said...

I'll leave you with one more tidbit.

The Alma Mater actually contains multiple verses, but we only sing the first at the games. The whole thing goes:

Although the Yale has always favored,
the violet's dark blue;
and the gentle sons of Harvard,
to the crimson rose are true;
we will own our colors' splendor,
nor honor shall they lack;
while the high school stands defender,
of the crimson and the black.

Thro' the four long years of high school,
Midst the scenes we know so well,
As the mystic charm to knowledge
We vainly seek to spell,
Or we win athletic victories
On the football field or track,
Still we work for dear old high school
and the crimson and the black.

When the cares of life o'er take us,
Mingling fast our locks with gray,
Should our dearest hopes betray us,
False fortune fall away;
Still we banish care and sadness,
As we turn our memories back,
And recall those days of gladness,
'Neath the CRIMSON AND THE BLACK!

Emily said...

Okay, so I lied; I'll tell you one more interesting thing. At least, one more for now.

Steubenville's football history officially started in 1900, but there are stories of games played between Steubenville and Wellsburg as far back as 1885. Starting in 1900, though, they played at North End Field (corner of 7th Street, at what is now the crazy intersection to get on the bridge).

In 1929, Harding Junior High was built, and with it came Harding Stadium. Over the years, additions were made to the stadium, and it now holds 10,000 -- with a standing-room capacity of about 13,000. (A capacity crowd came out for last year's game against Indian Creek.)

An interesting website to visit is www.lineofscrimmage.com/school_steubenville.html. ESPN did a special on Steubenville last year for their "Line of Scrimmage" program, and the videos on the website are really interesting. Be sure to watch Reno's video.

Also, you can visit www.rollredroll.com, but I think the author of the site "rewrites" history to some degree. For instance, he says it's called Steubenville Big Red High School now, which is a total lie. Also, he rewrote the words to the Alma Mater to include too many references to "Big Red." Still, there are a lot of neat photos that go back as far as 1925.

Emily said...

More random facts:

The band marched in LBJ's 1964 inaugural parade;

"The Horse" is a 1968 hit by the Cliff Nobles and Co.;

"K-Jee" is the song that John Travolta and whatserface use in the dance contest in "Saturday Night Fever."

Suzanne said...

I find all of this so fascinating! Thanks again for leaving so much info, Emily!

Dumbstruck by the Mystery

...our temptation is always to impose our prejudices or our measure on reality -- except when we are faced with a fact that leaves us dumbstruck, and instead of dominating the fact ourselves, we are dominated, overcome by it. If there were no moments of this kind, the Mystery could do anything, but in the end, we would reduce everything to the usual explanation. But not even a Nobel Prize winner can stop himself from being dumbstruck before an absolutely gratuitous gesture. If there were not these moments, we would find answers, explanations, and interpretations to avoid being struck by anything. It is good that some things happen that we cannot dominate, then we have to take them seriously, and this is the great question of philosophy. If the conditions for the possibility of knowledge (see Kant) impose themselves on reality or if there is something that is so powerfully disproportionate that it does not let itself be "grasped" by the conditions of possibility, then the horizon opens. If this were not the case, then we could dominate everything and be in peace, or at least without drama. Instead, not even the intelligence of a Nobel Prize winner could prevent him from coming face-to-face with a fact that made him dumbstruck -- instead of dominating, it was he who was dominated. Here begins the drama, because I am called to answer. It is the drama that unfolds between us and the Mystery, through certain facts, certain moments, in which the Mystery imposes itself with this evidence. These are facts that we cannot put in our pocket, which we cannot reduce to antecedent factors.
-- Julian Carron in "Friends, that is, Witnesses."