As I Drive Past the Goldwater Memorial

To continue with my thoughts while driving past the mentioned park and statue.

Barry Goldwater won a seat on the Phoenix City Council in 1948.  While regarding this as a stepping stone, he had several accomplishments.  In 1964, many people, mostly Republicans, criticized him for voting against the Civil Rights Act.  Yet as Council member,  Goldwater  supported  and helped clear through legislation for equal employment opportunities and  for the integration of housing, hotels, restaurants, and the Arizona National Guard.  This was milestone in Arizona history considering the states’ relationship  to the Old South.  On a national level, Goldwater did not feel the federal government had the authority to tell other states to do likewise .

In 1950, Barry Goldwater was the manager for Howard Pyle’s  successful  campaign to become Governor.  This gave Goldwater, already well know, some additional experience across Arizona.  In 1952, Goldwater got the nomination for United States Senator.  At the Chicago convention, he disappointed many Westerners by endorsing Dwight Eisenhower over Senator Robert A  Taft of Ohio.  Eisenhower was from the Eastern Establishment and, generally speaking, more  liberal than Taft.

Endorsing the General showed Goldwater was putting practical politics before his conservative philosophy.  He knew Eisenhower, as a war hero, was far more electable than Taft.  Taft was a Senate Giant, a wonderful man, and did have certain streaks of liberalism.   Taft also had a record that many opponents could use against him.  The the incumbent Democratic Senator was Earnest McFarland.   For two years, McFarland was the Senate Majority Leader.

It was an interesting campaign and Barry Goldwater benefited from having Dwight Eisenhower heading the ticket.  Two additional milestones occurred in 1952.  Arizona elected a Republican for both the President  and the Senator.  Goldwater was about to begin his Senate  career.

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World Football Leauge

Since the 1970 merger of the AFL and NFL, there have been two attempts to form another league .  Each lasted little more than a year.  The first was the World Football League in 1974.

These were the teams:

Chicago Fire

Detroit Wheel

Houston Texans…later the Shreveport Steamer

Jacksonville Sharks

Memphis Southmen.  Larry Csonka, Paul Warfield, and Jim Kick went to this team.  All three were from the Miami Dolphins and they really made money from  this short lived league.

New York Stars…later the Charlotte Hornets

Philadelphia Bell

Portland Storm

Southern California Sun

The league rules had one good setup.  Twenty games with no exhibitions.

Revenge Over Carolina

One of the darker days in Philadelphia Eagles playoff history was the 14 to 3 loss to the above team at home in the 2003 NFC Championship Game.  I never thought this game would be easy. In a way, the Eagles won the regular season match by default.  Philadelphia won  25 to 16, also at Lincoln, one month earlier.   The normally accurate John Kasay for the Panthers missed three field goals and an extra point.

In the Post Season, Carolina recorded five sacks and four pass interceptions, three by Ricky Manning.  To my biased eyes, it seemed like the officials ignored at least eight defensive holding penalties on Carolina. There was also the cruel spearing of a prostrate Donovan McNabb on the field goal drive.  It was and is against the rules to torpedo a player when he is down even if not by contact.  This past year at Dallas,  Anthony Spencer drew a flag for a similar hit on Jeremy Maclin.

The three victories since then seem better largely because of the 2003 game.

2004 at Lincoln

The Eagles recorded two sacks and four turnovers. Lito Shepard had two interceptions, one returned 64 yards for a touchdown. Terrell Owens caught four passes for 123 yards. Brian Westbrook ran 40 yards for a touchdown.  Philadelphia 30 Carolina 8.

2006 at Lincoln

This game started the great five game winning streak where the Eagles came back from 5-6 to finish  10-6.  Jeff Garcia completed 21 of 39 passes for 312 yards and three touchdowns.  Brian Dawkins had two pass interceptions. Lito Shepard’s End Zone interception preserved the victory. Philadelphia 27 Carolina 24.

2009 at Carolina

Carolina took the opening kickoff and moved right down the field for a touchdown.  After that, the Eagles gave up virtually nothing.  They got seven turnovers and five sacks.  In shotgun formation, the snap went over Jack Delhomme’s head. Victor Abiamiri covered it in the end zone for a touchdown.  Desean Jackson had a touchdown on an 85 yard punt retrun. Philadelphia 38 Carolina 10.

1979 Los Angeles Rams-Super Bowl

After 11 weeks,  Los Angeles was  5-6.   Most analyst felt their best years were behind them.  There was the frustration of losing to the Dallas Cowboys or the Minnesota Vikings in the playoffs.   The Rams often had a better record and defeated one or the other during the season.  The 5-6 record included  the following:

Week 4 at Tampa Bay

Jim Youngblood for the Rams returned an interception for a touchdown and the extra point failed.  The Buccaneer defense pitched  a shut out.  The Rams gained only 186 yards all day and gave up the ball four times.  Tampa Bay 21 Los Angeles 6.  The loss left the Rams at 2-2 and the Bucs a perfect 4-0.

Week 7 at Dallas

Roger Staubach completed 13 of 18 passes for 176 yards and three touchdowns.  Tony Dorsett gained 103 yards.  The Cowboys’ defense got  five sacks and three turnovers.  All the Rams managed was two field goals.  The lopsided  30 to 6 loss left the Rams 4-3  and  Dallas 6-1.

After going 5-6 the Los Angeles Rams won four  in a row. The final regular season game was an exhibition type loss to the New Orleans Saints.  At 9-7, the Rams had their worst season in seven years.    ———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————

Los Angeles Rams at Dallas-First Round of the Playoffs

Dallas was a heavy favorite based on their 11-5 record to the Rams  9-7.  The Cowboys also had an easy time defeating Los Angeles in their last two meetings. 

The previous years’ NFC Title Game 28 to 0.

The regular season game this year 30 to 6.

Today the Rams Wendell Tyler gained 82 yards.  Vince Ferragamo threw three touchdown passes.  The last one was to Billy Waddy for a 50 yard touchdown. Rams in a big upset 21 to 19.

Los Angeles at Tampa Bay.

Tampa Bay was 10-6 and, as stated, had beaten the Rams 21 to 6 during the season.  This game Los Angeles held the Bucs to an only amazing 177 yards and seven first downs.  Frank Corral kicked three goals.  Cullen Byrant chewed  up the clock with 107 yards.   The Rams won a shut out 9 to 0.

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The Rams went to the Super Bowl with a flip flop of previous years.  They defeated, both on the road, two teams  with better records and that had beaten them during the season. 

L. A. Rams Frustration-NFC Title Game 74 and 76

The Los Angeles  Rams’ biggest  disappointment in the 1973 to 1979 timeframe  was in the referenced games.  Minnesota won both with similar plays.

1974  NFC Title Game at Minnesota   Vikings won 14 to 10.

Los Angeles gained 340 yards to 269 for Minnesota.  Harold Jackson for LA caught  three passes for 139 yards and a touchdown;  but five turnovers and seven penalties hurt the Rams.  The most damaging play was when the Rams had a first and goal at the Minnesota one.  Viking linebacker Wally Hilgenberg intercepted a pass from James Harris in the end zone leaving the Rams without a score.

1976  NFC Title Game at Minnesota   Vikings won 24 to 13.

Each team’s best rushers fared well. Lawrence McCutcheon gained 128 yards and scored a touchdown for Los Angeles.  Chuck Foreman gained 118 yards for Minnesota.   The Vikings virtually won the game  on the first series after the opening kickoff.  The Rams took the kickoff and moved steadily downfield  to the Minnesota one.  On third and goal from that point, Rams quarterback Pat Haden tried the forced the ball in.  This was a big mistake. Haden was undersized compared to the Purple People Eaters.   Lawrence McCutcheon would have had more momentum.  The Vikings held.

Tom Dempsey tried an 18 yard field goal.  Matt Blair blocked the kick and Bob Bryant returned the football 90 yards for a touchdown.  This was a 14 point series.

Los Angeles Rams Frustration 1973 to 1978

The Los Angles Rams  really proved that both regular season records  and games mean almost nothing in the playoffs.  The playoffs are a whole new ball game. The Rams finally made it to the Super Bowl in 1979 under unusual circumstances.  Before that year either Minnesota or Dallas kept them from the Super Bowl.

1973-Los Angeles  Rams were 12-2 and and Dallas 10-4.   Both of the following games were at Los Angeles.  The Rams beat the Cowboys during the regular season 37 to 31.  In the first round of the playoffs, Dallas won 27 to 16.   The Rams had a season victory and were two games better than the Cowboys.  Dallas went on to lose NFC Championship Game.

1974-Both the Rams and the Minnesota had regular season records of 10-4.  The Rams won the season game 20 to 17 at home.   At Minnesota, the Vikings won the NFC Title Game 14 to 10.  The Rams had a first and goal at the one yard line and failed to score.

1975-The Rams were two games better than Dallas, 12-2 vs. 10-4.  These two games were at LA with the Cowboys winning both.  Season 18-7, NFC Title game 37 to 7.  The Los Angeles fans must have watched the second game in disbelief.

1976-Minnesota was 11-2-1 and Los Angeles  10-3-1.  The tie was between the two teams at Minnesota 10 to 10.  Also in Minnesota, the Vikings won the NFC Title Game 24 to 13.

1977-This season had the most amazing turns of them all.  The Rams at 10-4 were one game better than the 9-5 Vikings.  Both of these games were in Los Angeles. The Rams crushed Minnesota 35 to 3 during the season.  In the first round of the playoffs, the Vikings won 14 to 7; an amazing reversal.

1978-Both the Rams and Cowboys were 12-4 and both were at Los Angeles.  The Rams won during the season 27 to 14.  The Cowboys shut out the Rams in the NFL Title Game 28 to 0.

In six years, Los Angeles lost four NFC Title Games and two first round playoffs.

Replacing a Legend-Danny White in 1985

Game 3 at home with the Cleveland Browns.  White was 22 of 34 for 212 yards and two touchdowns. Dallas won 20 to 7.

Game 5 at New York Giants. Danny was 31 of 46 for 342 yards and three  touchdowns. He did throw  four interceptions, which made this a close win.  Dallas won 30 to 29.

Game 6 at home with Pittsburgh.  DW was 25 for 36 for 269 yards and a touchdown.   Dallas won 27 to 13.

Game 8 at home with Atlanta Falcons.  Danny White was 27 of 49 for 362 yards and a touchdown.  Dallas won  24 to 10.

Game  12 at home with the Eagles. White was 20 of 29 for 243 yards and three touchdowns.  Dallas won 34 to 17.

Game 13 at home with the Cardinals. White went 15 of 27 for 277 yards and four touchdowns.  Dallas won 35 to 17.

The Cowboys finished 10-6. The Los Angeles shut out  the Cowboys 20 to o in Dallas-first round of the playoffs