2011 GCAC Scholarship Winner
Shaun “Dylan” Searcy
President Dec McClelland
presented the $2,000 award.
Celebrating Sports Fellowship,
Spirit, and Community Pride
A Message from the GCAC President

Thank you for your interest in the Gulf Coast Athletic Club and our continued support of Gulf Shores High School Athletics. We have proudly been a part of the Gulf Shores community for over a decade now and certainly have enjoyed wonderful and entertaining speakers during those years while recognizing outstanding scholar athletes from Gulf Shores High School.

Our fellowship is open and we welcome any guest (ladies too) that would be interested in joining our GCAC club. As you can imagine, we have several club members that represent Auburn and the University of Alabama, but we certainly have members of several other great collegiate programs throughout our country. Our speakers, mostly football but not always, share with us their tales of success and triumph or how they have overcome obstacles and hardships to be where they are today. It's always entertaining and most certainly, you will get one good laugh before leaving.

We always meet on Monday nights at the Craft Farms Clubhouse during football season and again we welcome you to come join us!

GCAC President, Declan J McClelland
Scheduled Meetings & Guest Speakers

Aug  29--Coach Joey Jones, University of South Alabama Head FB Coach

Sep  12--Max Howell-Radio sports talk show legend and former football coach.

Sep  26--Coach Doug Barfield-Former Head Football Coach-Auburn University

Oct   10--Roger Shultz--former Univ of Alabama player and coach.

Oct   24--Jackie Sherrill--Former Alabama player & Head Football Coach at Miss. State

Nov   7-- Inky Johnson-former UT football player "An Amazing Story of Faith and Perseverance."

Nov 21-- Dr Gaylon McCollough:      Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant:
                                                       Grandmaster of Mind Over Matter

Jan 23-- Coach Larry Fedora--Head Football Coach-University of Southern Miss.

Spring Golf Tournament:  March 30, 2012
Monday Evenings at 6pm on the dates shown above.
GCAC Members,

It was great to see many of you last night at our first
GCAC Meeting of the year...YEAH...FOOTBALL IS BACK!!!!

I was encouraged with our turnout, the return to membership of 3 former GCAC members,  5 NEW members and numerous guests. Thanks to Head Coach Coach Joey Jones of USA for coming and speaking to our great club.

We were also glad to get a quick visit from Gulf Shores High School head coach Ben Blackmon...we all wish him and the Dolphins the best this season!

Just as reminder, Next Meeting is Sept 12th: Max Howell- College Football Analyst will be our guest speaker--more on Max later.

As a courtesy to our good friends at the Craft Farms Clubhouse, please RSVP asap for each meeting by email or telephone for you and your guests attendance. TJ and his staff do a wonderful job in preparing our food for each club meeting and we want to make sure that they get plenty of notice on how many to prepare for. Thanks.

The GCAC website is being resurrected and updated--thanks to Jim Walker.  It will be ready soon and you can check it out  at www.gcathleticclub.com

Iron Bowl Tickets Raffle: The club has acquired 2 tickets to this years Alabama vs. Auburn Iron Bowl.  This years game will be in Auburn.  A maximum of 100 raffle tickets will be sold on a "first come-first serve" basis and will be $30 for 1 raffle ticket or $50 for 2.  These tickets will go fast so buy your chances now.  Contact Fred Dickinson, 975-1500, email fdickinson@gulftel.com to purchase.   Winner will be chosen at Nov 7th meeting.  Proceeds from this fundraiser will help continue the support and scholarships to Gulf Shores High School Athletics.

Thanks and see y'all in couple of weeks on Sept 12 for our first crying towel!

Dec McClelland
GCAC President
From the 4th GCAC Meeting
with Guest Speaker Roger Shultz
October 10th, 2011
GCAC Members,

We had a great meeting Monday Sept 12th as we welcomed sports radio host Max Howell. Max did a great job going over some of his thoughts surrounding the world of college football and of course our members grilled him with their questions.

It was great to hear team reports led by Crying Towel committee chairperson, Kevin Corcoran. I knew, yours truly, would be this years first recipient as my beloved golden domers had once again found a way to be overranked chumps coming out of the gate. Good luck to the Irish as they take on Ketzler's Kids, the Spartans of Meeeeechigan State this saturday.

Thanks again to Jim Walker for giving us all rundown and breakdown on our new and improved GCAC website. Great job and looks sharp!

Look forward to our next meeting with coach Doug Barfield and remember to RSVP!!!

Dec McClelland
GCAC President

Next Meeting:  Monday, January 23rd, 2012
Guest Speaker: Coach Larry Fedora
GCAC Club,

We had a great meeting this past Monday and a nice crowd on hand to hear former Alabama player, and runner-up in the hit TV show, Biggest Loser, Roger Shultz. 

Roger has an incredible wit and kept the members intrigued as he told stories of his 4 years as an Alabama player and his ambition to be on a reality TV show, which led to his near miss at winning Biggest Loser, having lost first place by a mere 4lbs. 

As always, a big part of the evening is led by Crying Towel committee chairman, Kevin Corcoran.  Ed Cluck was on hand to receive his "Prize".

Please support the GCAC Iron Bowl Raffle ticket sales.  We still have plenty of tickets available.  Here's a way to support our clubs goals and have a great chance at winning 2 tickets to a surely great game.

GCAC Vice President
Fred Dickinson
From the 1st GCAC Meeting of 2011-2012
August 29th, 2011
Guest Speaker, USA Head Football Coach, Joey Jones
USA Coach Joey Jones
Max Howell
From the 2nd GCAC Meeting
with Guest Speaker Max Howell
September 13th, 2011
From the 3rd GCAC Meeting
with Guest Speaker Doug Barfield
September 26th, 2011
GCAC Club,

Great meeting this past Monday night as we welcomed our special guest, former Auburn football coach, Doug Barfield. What A great speaker! Informative, funny and inspirational. We look forward to our next speaker, Roger Shultz, at our next meeting.

Congrats to our scholar athletes again, Virginia Jones and Chris Tilley Jr, two kids going in great directions and I could definitely see that their parents were proud.

We look forward to our team reports, led by crying committee chairman, Kevin Corcoran. Unfortunately our Arkansas Razorback member, Ed Cluck, was not in house to accept his prized crying towel this week as his hog soooeys were indeed rolled by the 3rd ranked Crimson tide.

Remember, Iron Bowl Raffle tickets still available...only 34 sold...plenty of chances left!

GCAC Pres
Dec McClelland
Roger Shultz
Important Note:  All those planning to attend the next meeting,
please RVSP to Fred or Dec prior to the meeting night. 
This will insure proper food coverage for the meeting.
Fred: 251-975-1500   fdickinson@gulftel.com  
Dec: 251-968-9010  dec.mcclelland@edwardjones.com
 
From the 6th GCAC Meeting
with Guest Speaker Inky Johnson
November 7th, 2011

GCAC Club,


We had a great meeting monday and what a privelage it was to listen to former University of Tennesse player Inky Johnson tell his story of life.

Inky shared with us just how hard he had to work in order to make things happen for himself and really became an inspiration for those in his family and his teammates on how to persevere...not just a football player but as a man.

A tragic ending to his career happened in a split second on a tackling play against the Air Force Academy,  but that did not keep him down...it forced him to become stronger.

Inky was a great visit and a great speaker. I had the opportunity to have breakfast with Inky this morning before I took him over to the field house at Gulf Shores High School to talk in front of the football team. 
Again, a great story!

Thanks again to our scholar athletes, Sarah Uter and James Duggan and congratulations on being recognized! Also, congratulations to club member, Jack Reagan for winning our Iron Bowl Tickets!

See you Nov 21st when we get to hear more about the Coach, the legend and teacher, Paul Bear Bryant, from our own Dr. Gaylon McCollough.

Good luck with your teams as our schedules wind down for the year!


Dec McClelland
GCAC President
This Years
Past Meeting Notes
From the 5th GCAC Meeting
with Guest Speaker Jackie Sherrill
October 24th, 2011
GCAC Club,

Great crowd Monday night at Craft Farms for guest speaker
Alabama legend and Head Coach Jackie Sherrill! I have to
say...that was arguably one of the most interesting and informative meetings we have had from our long list of guest speakers. Of course if you were there, Jackie went into great detail about the realignment of college football, what has already happened and what is to come. Coach Sherrill spoke at great length about the business of college football and how it is shaping not only football but college sports altogether.

Jackie informed our group how "the footprint" of college program is where and how a team holds its own within a major conference. A fan base and television market share is what makes each program desirable or attractive to be affliated within a conference. ACC just added University of Pittsburgh and Syracuse but could Clemson or Georgia Tech be sneaking out the back door to join the SEC? How about the Big 12 dissolving...could Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas and Texas Tech be joining the Pac 12?...Will West Virginia join the Big 12 if Missouri leaves to join the SEC? Sound confusing?...Well for some...it has been but Jackie did an excellent job running through these different scenarios and illustrated with his maps how eventually we are headed to 4 major conferences and eventually may be headed, at some point, hopefully, to a college football playoff! Wow!

Sorry Auburn Tigers and Jo Jo McCarron on the crying towel...it was a beatdown from the LSU Bayou Bengals but good luck with Ole Miss this week. Kevin, as always did a great job in leading us with team reports and his sacred attire of Michigan State's miracle end of the game hail mary to beat the Badgers of Wisconsin. Good luck to everyone's team this week.

See you all on Nov 7th as we welcome former Tennessee player Inky Johnson. Remember...Iron
Bowl Tickets winner will be announced on that evening!

GCAC President
Dec McClelland
Jackie Sherrill
GCAC lost a great member and friend this week.

Jim Jent, a charter member of GCAC and a good friend to many of us, passed away Tuesday. He and his passionate Oklahoma report will be missed.  Jim had struggled with his health lately but never gave up and was a fighter to the very end.

A memorial service was held this Saturday at 10AM at Pine Rest Funeral Home in Foley. And a celebration of his life was held at the Elks Lodge in Foley afterwards. 

Jim is survived by his wife, Aggie, and his son, Greg.

In our request for a picture of Jim, Fran Thompson was able to find an older picture of Jim and also sent along some rememberences.

Following words and picture from Fran Thompson:

Jim was a ham. I'm sure I shot his picture 100 times over the years. Most of my pics from the pre-digital days were swept away during Ivan. This is the only pic that came up in my computer. Jim is the guy with the better toupee (left).

Jim was also charter member of the Gulf Coast Athletic Club and an individual member of the Perdido and Gulf Shores Chambers. He ran both Chambers' ambassador programs for a while. He was also active in the South Baldwin Republican Club, the Elks Club, the Legion, etc.   He always dressed well, often in black accessorized with gold jewelry.

Jim, Joni Hicks, Jim Monnier and I were all active in our club in the late 1990's. The four of us went to lunch at Cosmos about a year ago. That was the last time we hung out.  I also used to tease him about being a mailman (I think he was actually a supervisor). It's a cliche, but he really was one of a kind, and if he was still with us, I would tell him that and add, "thank goodness for that."

Thanks in advance for letting me share a few words about one of our Island's true characters.

Fran
Jim Jent, shown on the left.
From the 7th GCAC Meeting
with Guest Speaker Dr. Gaylon McCollough
November 21st, 2011

GCAC Club, 

Our GCAC had another great meeting Nov 21st when we were treated to a real insight to the legendary coach Paul Bryant presented by our very own member, Dr Gaylon McCollough. Gaylon gave us an in-depth look into how Coach Bryant laid his foundation for success.  A foundation that started on the football field and continued well into their lives beyond football.

Gaylon gave us some great stories and insight into the man, coach and mentor that he was. We heard several stories of the lessons he taught so well in his career as a coach, and how those lessons carried off the field in the minds of his players, like Dr McCollough, and how his players practiced those teachings on the gridiron of life.

Thanks again for a wonderful presentation and a big thank you to Gaylon for giving everyone a copy of his book, "The Long Shadow of Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant, and for signing autographs after the meeting.

Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas to all of you through the holiday season!

Our next meeting will be January 23rd when we will welcome head coach of Southern Miss, Larry Fedora.


Dec McClelland
GCAC President
Coach Larry Fedora
Guest Speaker
Larry Fedora
Head Coach of the
University of
Southern Mississippi

Click on pictures to ENLARGE
When Larry Fedora accepted the job to become the 18th head coach at the University of Southern Mississippi, he promised that his football team would "attack" in all phases of the game.

That is exactly what the Golden Eagles have done during his initial two seasons as the program's mentor.

In his first year in Hattiesburg, Fedora's squad broke 36 school records on the way to ending the season with a five-game winning streak to reach a bowl game. The Golden Eagles extended that streak in 2009 to eight games and in the process through the course of the season kept several program streaks intact during the season including:

• 16th straight winning season, which trails only Florida, Florida State and Virginia Tech

• eighth straight bowl appearance

• at least seven wins in 12 of the past 13 seasons

• appeared in the 12th bowl game in the last 13 seasons

The Fedora era has drawn record crowds to Carlisle-Faulkner Field at Roberts Stadium as the school has averaged over 30,000 fans for the first time in school history over the last two seasons. More fans went through the turnstiles than ever before (184,178) in 2009 as the school also averaged over 30,000 fans (30,696) in home attendance, which stands as a school record.

The Golden Eagles, which finished 20th in the nation in total offense in 2008, their highest finish in its history in the FBS, went over the 5,000 mark for the third straight season.

Southern Miss has also excelled on the defensive side of the football as they have forced turnovers in 24 of 26 games during the Fedora era.

The defense, which forced 29 turnovers, and ended the year ranked No. 10 in turnover margin nationally, notched 26 turnovers in 2009 and looked to finish the year in the Top 10 in that category for the second consecutive year.

Fedora, 47, came to Southern Miss after spending three seasons as the offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State where the Cowboys were in the top 10 in rushing yards per game and in the top 20 in total offense per game in each over his final two seasons. During Fedora's three-year tenure at OSU, the Cowboys raised their rushing, passing and total offensive yards each year that he was there. In 2006, the Cowboys were one of just two teams - the other being Boise State - to average over 200 yards both rushing and passing.

Born on Sept. 10, 1962, in College Station, Texas, Fedora is a 1985 graduate of Austin College, where he also received his Masters degree from there in 1986. He is married to the former Christi Wood, and the couple has one son, Dillon, and three daughters, Sydney, Peyton and Hallie.

Craft Farms Club House
Dinner meeting begins at 6pm
Jim Jent
Photo shared by family
Below are photos shared by GCAC Member and
brother-in-law to Dr. McCollough, Joel Nomberg. 
Joel proudly introduced Dr. McCollough at Monday nights meeting.
Dr. McCollough with Joe Namath at the stamp dedication for Bear Bryant.
Book signing in 2010 at The Wharf, from L to R:
Dr. Gaylon McCollough, son Sted McCollough, All American Linebacker, Leroy Jordan, Joel Nomberg, and the voice of Alabama Football, Eli Gold.    

Dr. McCollough with lovely wife Susan.
Coach Bear Bryant with Dr. McCollough (center), at the Sugar Bowl.Dr. McCollough at a booksigning in Fairhope last year.Gaylon cooking fish that Joel claims to catch & clean, Gaylon cooks.Dr. McCollough with one of his passions.
Additional photos:  CLICK ON PHOTO TO ENLARGE