Write Again … our perfect season

Published 12:26 am Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The pursuit of perfection is a noble endeavor. To say that achieving perfection is almost impossible is at the very least a bit of an understatement.

To achieve perfection in the sports arena — by a team — well, it almost never, ever happens.

I’m reminded of the great Duke football team of the late 1930s, coached by the legendary Wallace Wade, that ended its season unbeaten, untied and unscored upon. Pure perfection. Then, in the Rose Bowl, the fickle gods of fate turned against those “Iron Dukes,” and a heartbreaking 7-3 defeat ended the dream season. The winning score for the USC Trojans came on a pass play in the last two minutes.

Well, without wanting to appear boastful, let me tell you, kind readers, that I was a part of a team-sport perfection.

It was 1951, and the mighty midget football team of Washington was undefeated and unscored upon. Would that I could remember all those who made up this gridiron juggernaut, but it’s been a long, long time.

I do recall that some of my teammates were Mickey, Don, Billy, Lester, George A., Mac, Jack, Doc, Carl, Skybo, and other notables. I apologize to all whose names don’t appear here.

Yes, we achieved that most elusive of all team achievements: undefeated and unscored upon.

Our season opener was against New Bern, and after a titanic clash, the dust settled with the score 0-0. A tie.

(Very cleverly, I put a couple of thin strips of adhesive tape on the sleeves of my jersey so my parents might identify me more easily. Pretty classy, huh?)

Well. That’s it. Our perfect season. What? No, we didn’t play any more games. I don’t remember why, and don’t recall knowing why then.

Some of you might not truly realize the significance of our team’s achievement. If not, let me ask you this: were you ever part of something so uniquely special? You may question the importance of what we fledgling football fellows accomplished.

To you, I simply say: The record speaks for itself. Undefeated … unscored upon.