Rival Grid Coaches Have Baseball in Common

Russ Huesman (UTC) and Kirby Cannon (Austin Peay)

Saturday, September 14, 2013

What better place to grow up for young baseball fans in the 1960s and 70s than the Midwest.

St. Louis, Cincinnati and Detroit as well as Pittsburgh all won World Series titles in a 13 year span (1964-1976) with Minnesota capturing an American League pennant.

Televised games are great, but they pale in comparison to summer nights with your dad listening on the family radio as your home team announcers paint a picture of your diamond heroes achievements.

Two such boys – Russ Huesman, a Big Red Machine Fan, and Kirby Cannon, an avid follower of the St. Louis Cardinals, - are now men and faced each other tonight in a college football game at Finley Stadium as Huesman’s team (UTC) defeated Cannon’s squad (Austin Peay), 42-10.

On a clear night and the wind blowing just right, it was baseball heaven as legendary announcers in their prime were Rembrandt and Picasso behind the microphone to Huesman in Cincinnati and Cannon in Alexandria, Mo., painting a verbal portrait for the team’s long distant faithful who might never see a home game, but fans nonetheless.

KMOX in St. Louis gave you Harry Caray and Jack Buck broadcasting from old Sportsman’s Park and later Busch Stadium, while Joe “Nuxie” Nuxhall and Marty Brenneman broadcast Redlegs games over WLW from Crosley Field and then Riverfront Stadium. In Detroit, the great Ernie Harwell called the games from Tiger Stadium over WJR.

In Pittsburgh it was Bob Prince on KDKA from Forbes Field, the Chicago White Sox had Bob Elson and Don Wells (followed by ralph Kiner, then Milo Hamilton) on WCFL when the Go-Go Sox won the A.L. Pennant in 1959, while on the North Side Jack Brickhouse brought you the action of the Chicago Cubs from the friendly confines of Wrigley Field.

A quick comparison of the two coaches

Both born in the Midwest in Jan. (just before pitchers and catchers report for spring training) … Cannon in 1958 and Huesman two years later.

Both played football and baseball in college – Huesman, a centerfielder and defensive back, at UTC (1978-81) and Cannon, a pitcher and quarterback, at Missouri State (1977-80) ….

College Titles: Huesman helped the Mocs win Southern conference football titles in 1978-79 … Cannon pitched in the NCAA D-II World Series in the spring of  ’78 and was a member of the football team that fall who won the MIAA.

Cannon ranks third in career wins (27-5) in 1978 and is in the Missouri State (formerly Southwest Missouri) Sports Hall of Fame.

Cards and the Reds … both coaches feel their diamond heroes are the best .

Huesman’s lineup of the mid-1970s shows hall of famers in Johnny Bench, Joe Morgan and Tony Perez, plus Pete Rose, Ken Griffey and Davey Concepcion

Cannon’s Cards won W.S. titles in 1964, ’67 and runner-up in ’68 led hall of famers Bob Gibson and Lou Brock, plus Curt Flood, Bill White, Ken Boyer, Dick Groat and Tim McCarver.

Fast forward to 2013 and these two coaches still have a keen interest in the N.L. pennant race as  the Cards, Reds and Pirates are all in the hunt for the N.L.Central division crown.

 

contact B.B. Branton at william.branton@comcast.net


PHOTOS: MBA Sneaks By McCallie 1-0 In Division II-AA Soccer

McCallie Falls To MBA In Division IIAA Soccer 1-0

The McCallie boys soccer team gave a second half goal off a long throw in that would be the difference Wednesday night in the Division IIAA state soccer semifinals against MBA.   MBA advances to the state championship game on Thursday at 1:30 against Christian Brothers.  McCallie ends their season with an impressive 13-3-3 record.   The goal came in the 51st ... (click for more)

Woman, 26, Who Was Set To Testify In Murder Trial, Is Shot And Killed On Elder Street

A 26-year-old woman who was set to testify in an upcoming murder trial was shot multiple times and killed on Wednesday morning. Chattanooga Police responded to the 2100 block of Elder Street on a report of a dead person on the side of the road near Old Ringgold Road and Westside Drive. Police located Bianca Horton.  P olice established a crime scene.  Chattanooga ... (click for more)

Attorney For Bobby Stone Hits Berke, Fletcher For Commenting On Pending Case

The attorney for Bobby Stone on Wednesday said it was "fundamentally wrong" for Mayor Andy Berke and Police Chief Fred Fletcher to comment on the case in which Mr. Stone is charged with domestic assault against his wife, Berke advisor Lacie Stone. Attorney Lee Davis said the comments were unfair and "a disservice to the court." Mayor Berke denied any inappropriate contact ... (click for more)

Case Handled Like Any Other? - And Response

It is interesting that Chief Fletcher would deem the handling of the Mayor's encounter as typical or normal. Is the Chief asking the public to believe that all misdemeanor domestic violence arrests include a 4-hour taped interrogation, and delayed reporting after a visit to the Chief’s house. Of course, we believe that Chief Fletcher. April Eidson * * *  I ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Christian Schools Bully, Too

Earlier this week, after I shared a story about bullying written by a very brave mother, it opened a floodgate of emails from parents and students who have been forced to endure such madness in our elementary, junior and senior high schools. Discipline is the No. 1 problem in our schools. Because of it, or because of a lack of it, no wonder our children cannot achieve all that ... (click for more)