The question was popped at me at least three times from different colleagues last Sunday as the Lions were being dismembered, again. œHave you ever seen it worse?
It has taken a series of my flashbacks to determine the response: œNever worse than this year, but a couple just as bad.
(it’s a Match Game kinda Christmas Eve around here)
For example, the Lions were a fractured football team in 1966. Harry Gilmer, the coach, had himself a familiar problem. He had to play quarterback roulette – Milt Plum or Karl Sweetan. The locker room was split, and Alex Karras (above) stoked up a near rebellion against Harry Gilmer, the coach. One day after practice, Gilmer took me by the arm and escorted me from the locker room as I listened to Karras.
Under duress? Gilmer knew William Ford would be firing him when the season ended. There was no angry fan parade drummed up by a radio station. The rabble displayed more ingenuity – if that is the proper word.
As Gilmer walked off the field at Tiger Stadium after the last loss in a 4-9-1 season, they bombarded him with snowballs. Some of the players rushed to protect Gilmer from the abuse with their capes.
Inside, Gilmer greeted us with his comment about the snowball attack.
œAt least they didn”t have rocks in them, Gilmer said, his departure assured.