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News Story
Updated: 10/31/2013 08:00:05AM

Four memories of the rivalry: DeSoto coaches recall past battles

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ARCADIAN PHOTOS BY STEVE KNAPP, sbigdaddyknapp@aol.com

Coach Hay and Nicklow feel the pain of defeat in the Southeast game.

ARCADIAN PHOTOS BY STEVE KNAPP, sbigdaddyknapp@aol.com

Darryl "Dabbo" Nicklow listens to the post game talk after the Southeast game.

ARCADIAN PHOTOS BY STEVE KNAPP, sbigdaddyknapp@aol.com

A disappointed Bumper Hay sits on the band bleachers after a Bulldogs' loss.

ARCADIAN PHOTOS BY STEVE KNAPP, sbigdaddyknapp@aol.com

DeSoto middle school football coach Arthur Wiley laughs as he remembers some of the games he played against Hardee while wearing the Bulldogs uniform.

ARCADIAN PHOTOS BY STEVE KNAPP, sbigdaddyknapp@aol.com

Al Blackwood, middle school football coach, takes a few minutes to talk about his experiences as a player for DeSoto County.

PHOTO BY RANDI SOKOLOSKY

The 2013 DeSoto High School football team.

PHOTO PROVIDED

The 1923 Bulldogs' squad blanked Hardee 6-0 in only the third meeting between the two teams. DeSoto County won the first three contests, but trail the Wildcats in the overall series.

By Steve Knapp

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The Arcadian recently had the chance to talk with former Bulldog players about their memories of the DeSoto-Hardee football rivalry. Al Blackwood and Arthur Wiley are now longtime assistant coaches at the DeSoto County Middle School. Darrel Nicklow and Bumper Hay are assistant football coaches at the high school.

They all had vivid memories of what they called the “game of the year.” One remembers almost wetting his pants because of all of the excitement and noise from the crowd. Another recalls nearly going deaf in the game because “Coach Bowers was yelling at me all of the time.”

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