A certain memorable debut remembered.

Rivals lists the 10 most memorable debuts in college football, and #34 leads the pack.

“I knew Herschel was going to be a great player,” Dooley said last week via phone. “The question in my mind was how soon was he going to be great, particularly coming out of a Class A school, the smallest classification. I wasn’t sure.

“On the other hand, I was certainly going to give him the opportunity to see if he can make the adjustment.”

Walker was third on the tailback depth chart behind senior Donnie McMickens and sophomore Carnie Norris. Dooley planned to play each two series before putting Walker in.

By halftime, McMickens would be relegated to special teams and Norris would be a backup the rest of his career.

Nothing says serious like a tearaway jersey.

Nothing says serious like a tearaway jersey.



Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

5 responses to “A certain memorable debut remembered.

  1. 81Dog

    If you were in Knoxville that night, no explanation of the electricity of the atmosphere when Herschel bulldozed Bill Bates is necessary. If you werent there, no sufficient description of it is possible.

    Herschel made a few solid runs when he finally got in during the first half, but UT had basically shut us down. We had given up a safety (to this day, I have never heard a louder stadium than UT when they scored that early safety. Could…..not……hear…..myself….think..) We got torched on a deep post in early in the 3rd, if I recall correctly, to go down 15-0. We were basically getting our asses kicked on both sides of the ball. It was not, to borrow a phrase, looking like a night for Old Lady Luck.

    And then, a drive. #34 was picking up yards. UGA was showing a pulse. If we could only score, maybe we could make a game of it. And then, here comes Herschel. Bates takes him head on….and gets crumpled like an empty Dixie cup. He blows between two more defenders like they were inflateable dummies, and walks into the end zone, where he calmly hands the ball to the referee.

    That TD was for power freaks. His second TD was for speed freaks. Took the ball wide, turned the corner, flew into the end zone untouched. Imagine beer truck that could accelerate like a Ferrari. There wasnt a lot of juking in Herschel’s game. He could run over you, or run away from you. He probably never needed to consider the feint as part of his repetoire.

    Anyone who thinks he wasnt the greatest college running back EVER is just fooling himself. There were others who were very good. There were others who were better pros. No one, and I mean NO ONE (especially Bo Jackson, for you ridiculous AU fans) changed the fate of a team so drastically and so consistently. He should have won the Heisman as a freshman. He DID win a national championship, and was in the running for two more. Had he come back for his senior year, UGA surely would have been in contention for another one.

    The best I’ve ever seen in college. Call me a homer, but no one did it better, faster or more consistently.


  2. Richt-Flair

    Shockley’s debut wasn’t bad either. Wouldn’t have beaten Clemmins w/o him.


  3. DirkDawggler

    Carnie Norris was a very capable back and had a big game vs. Mississippi in ’80 after Herschel got a bit dinged.


  4. Frank

    How about Robert Edwards’ debut at tailback. Granted the opposition was a joke…


  5. CFR


    Shoot me an email, thanks!