Thursday, October 03, 2013
- by B.B. Branton
As Howard travels to Brainerd Friday (7:30 pm. kickoff) for a district game and bragging rights, it's worth looking at the start of the rivalry nearly 50 years ago.
Their first two meetings - Brainerd won in 1966 (20-7) and Howard won in 1967 (7-0) - set the tone for what has been a strong rivalry for nearly five decades.
Not only did the winner claim neighborhood bragging rights it also took home the Hamilton Interscholastic League crown; Brainerd in 1966 and Howard the following year.
The two schools also dominated the decade with undefeated seasons as the Hustlin' Tigers had four (1960-61-62-67), while Brainerd compiled three (1961-62-69).
The best Howard team since joining the TSSAA for the 19666-67 school year is the 1967 undefeated, untied, and top 10 ranked team (10-0-0) of coach Chubby James.
"We were just a team of talented players who grew up playing with or against each other as kids and came together at Howard to win the HIL in the fall of 1967," said All-HIL defensive back Ed Hammonds.
"We had big, power backs in twin brothers Perry and Jerry Hicks, an excellent quarterback in Pee Wee Shropshire and a real strong defense."
Perry Hicks was the second leading scorer in the city, while the defense posted four shutouts and allowed only 53 points in 10 games.
"And we had speed, including the fastest guy in the city and state," said running back Leonard Smith pointing to Hammonds earlier this week as a few '67 teammates met at the school.
"There wasn't anyone faster in Chattanooga than Buddy (Ed Hammonds)."
To say that Howard had speed in the defensive backfield is like saying Picasso could paint.
Hammonds and fellow defensive back Maurice Knight along with Lynn Fox from East Ridge all ran track for Memphis State, winning the 4x400 NCAA championship as seniors in 1973, while Hammonds made it double gold by sprinting to an NCAA title in the 100 yard dash.
Ed Hammonds Bio
1967 - 9.7 TSSAA state champ, 100 yard dash
1973 - NCAA champion, 100 yard dash
NCAA Champion, 4x400 , Ed Hammonds, Maurice Knight, Lynn Fox, Everet Taylor
also won 100 yard dash at Drake Relays, Florida Relays (most valuable athlete), Penn Relays, Tom Black and Dogwood Relays in Knoxville ... second in the 100 at Texas Relays
NCAA Indoors - 2x NCAA runner-up in 60 yard dash (1972-73)
Missouri Valley Conference - Indoor 2x 50 yard dash champ (1972-73)
Outdoor- 2x 100 yard dash champ (1972 (9.6), 1973 (9.4) ... 200 yard dash champ (1973, 21.0)
Howard 10-0-0 Strawberry Bowl Champs Pts. 353-53 4 Shutouts top 10 State Ranking
Howard 7, Brainerd 0 … Sept. 1 at Howard …. (1-0-0) ... Known as Pee Wee, Fred Shropshire capped a 91-yard, fourth quarter scoring drive with a 10-yard run to avenge a loss to the Rebels in ’66 … In a battle of two first team All-City quarterbacks, Shropshire outdueled Brainerd's Bill Romans who would play freshman football for Auburn before injuries ended his career.
"Pee Wee was an excellent quarterback and was talented enough to successfully call audibles at the line of scrimmage. He did this all season," said Leonard Smith.
Howard 44, Booker T Washington 0 … Sept 9 at BTW … (2-0-0) ... Perry Hicks scored twice as the Hustlin’ Tigers rushed for 374 yards to improve to 2-0
Howard 20, Central 6 … Sept. 22 at Chamberlain Field …(3-0-0) ... Howard is first Chattanooga City school to defeat Chattanooga Central since Chattanooga City did it in 1939 … The Hicks brothers, Perry and Jerry, score third quarter touchdowns to break a 6-6 halftime score ..Defensive end Jimmy Moorer made a key tackle of a Central running back near the goal line in the fourth quarter to keep it a two-score game.
Howard 36, East Ridge 14 … Sept. 29 at Howard …. (4-0-0) ... Shropshire ran for one score and threw for another … Ed Hammonds raced 96 yards with an interception, while fellow defensive back Maurice Knight also covered 93 yards with an interception which was called back on a penalty
Howard 56, Notre Dame 0 … Oct. 6 at Notre Dame … (5-0-0) ... A strong Howard defense holds the Irish to 22 yards rushing and 32 yards pasing and posts its third shutout … the offense is equally as impressive with 376 rushing and 128 passing ... Perry Hicks rushes for two scores and catches two scoring tosses from Shropshire
Howard 28, Riverside 6 … Oct. 20 at UC’s Chamberlain Field … (6-0-0) ... Shropshire throws three TDs before 8,500 at Chamberlain Field … Perry Hicks has 42 yard punt return … win gives Howard a tie for the HIL AA title … defense allows
No.4 Howard 65, Austin 0 …Oct. 26 at Howard … (7-0-0) ... a rare Thursday night game and fourth shutout of season … defense holds Austin to 42 yards total offense … Ira Nance has three interceptions, two returned for scores … -8 yards rushing and 40 yards passing for Austin
Howard 65, Clarksville 7 … Nov. 3 at Howard … (8-0-0) ... Homecoming win as Perry Hicks has three scores … defense scores on blocked punt and fumble recovery … Homecoming Queen is Marilyn Baldwin.
Howard 12, City 7 … Nov. 10 at City … (9-0-0) ....First HIL AA title for Hustlin’ Tigers … Shropshire connects with Jimmy Moorer on a 40-yard scoring pass play … ???? Knight scores on interception …
Howard 14, Nashville Pearl 13 .. Nov 17 in Dayton - Strawberry Bowl ... (10-0-0) ... In the battle of quarterbacks, Howard's Fred Shropshire out dueled Joe "Jefferson Street" Gilliam as the Hustlin' Tigers won 14-13 ... Howard used touchdowns from Perry Hicks and a scoring pass play, Shropshire to Joe Lee ... Gilliam, who would go on to play at Tennessee State and the Pittsburgh Steelers, connected with Porter Williams on a 67-scoring pass play to open the game ... Howard scored 14 points in the second quarter, while Pearl scored again in the fourth quarter, but William Forrester's extra point attempt was Florida State wide left to leave Pearl a point short.
contact B.B. Branton at email@example.com