A little history goes a long way

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 26, 2013

Every now and then, it’s a rare treat for me to listen to coaches tell of their old playing days.

On Wednesday, I sat down and talked with Opp head football coach Jack Whigham about his team’s upcoming rivalry battle with Andalusia tomorrow night.

Usually during an interview, I typically open it up with a generic question asking the respective coach what his or her thoughts are on the match up.

Whigham dug right in and told a little bit about how in his mind, the Opp-Andalusia rivalry still holds up as the big one to this day.

“We didn’t have any other rivals,” the Opp coach said. “We had some traditional teams that we played, like Elba and Geneva. The Opp-Andaluisa game was the game. I’m still of that mind set.”

Whigham, who played for the Bobcats in the late 70s and early 80s, said there were some great games between the two in his time.

One such game Whigham said he remembers the most as a sophomore in 1980.

The Bobcats won that game 24-17 in overtime.

“I can still see things that happened in that game,” Whigham said. “We won then, and I won as a junior and as a senior.”

After that, the rivalry went back and forth — like all rivalries should go in my opinion.

There was a long stretch in the 90s and 2000s, where Opp won on a frequent basis.

Since 2005, Andalusia’s held a 8-1 advantage over OHS. The last time the Bulldogs lost to the Bobcats was in the first round of the Class 4A state playoffs in 2009 when OHS was in the same classification as AHS.

Andalusia has won three straight since then.

One thing I find interesting about the game is that no matter what each team’s record is at the time of the game, it’s always a good, competitive game.

Whether it be the Bulldogs or Bobcats who come out on top, it’s going to be a close game.

I’m anxious to see how it will all be played out for the 70th time in the schools’ history.

Will you be there?