President Linda Martin opened the 2019-20 season of the Gulf Coast Athletic Club at 7:00pm on Monday, August 26, 2019. She thanked the large crowd assembled and said she was looking forward to another great year. She had the Board stand up, noting we had two new Directors this year.
David Lee then took over the podium for a well-deserved tribute and memorial to our late member and former master Membership Director, Dixie Dave DeMeyer. He recently had a stroke and passed away far too quickly from this earth. Dave was a huge Washington State Cougars fan and, last year, had the legendary former WSU Athletic Director Stan Jankovich here as his guest and our Guest Speaker. David Lee told several Dixie Dave stories, from his tragic US Navy Ensign flying days where he was involved in a mid-air collision in Pensacola during training, his subsequent 2 year recovery, and other exploits of our dearly beloved fellow member. Good Bye, Dixie Dave DeMeyer, gone but never forgotten.
Linda introduced Membership Chair Andrew Hart who reported we have 80 members and counting at this point. New members and guests were introduced.
David Lee took over the mike again and told all of the Football Pool on again for this year. Joey Daughtery will be handling this and we’ll get cranked up this week. $25 gets you in the pool picking 10 games per week against the point spread for the next 14 or so weeks. This year, each player only gets 2 autopicks, then all losses after those two for all weeks not selected by the participant. Our Defending Champion as the Most Proficient Pigskin Prognosticator is Mrs. HiYield herself, Cynthia Tunnell.
Coach Matt Blake was introduced and made his way to the stage amid a chorus of “GO DOLPHINS” commemorating the first ever season-opening win for the newly established Gulf Shores High School City System. Coach said they had a great off-season and there was excitement in the air. He talked about getting to hire 6 new coaches for the new Athletic Staff and thanked Superintendent Matt Akin for his support, also, of course, the continued support of the Chair of the School Board, our very own Kevin Corcoran!! The 17-14 win came with a blocked last-minute Satsuma field goal attempt! So proud, GSHS!
Dec McClelland will give Team Reports and the legendary Crying Towel again this year. He noted this was the 20th year of GCAC and thanked Kevin Corcoran, Dr. Gaylon McCollough, and Chuck Norwood as original members. The CT resumes in two weeks. He did note the demise of the Mayor’s ponytail.
Dr. McCollough said, before introducing our Speaker, the Club annually hosts male and female Student Athletes during our fall meetings and scholarships are awarded to one each at year’s end. The amounts have ranged from $2,000 to $5,000 each, depending on our fundraising events’ success.
He then introduced former FSU and Alabama Quarterback Jake Coker, the only Division One QB to play on two different National Championship teams, once at FSU under Coach Jimbo Fisher and winning the Championship in 2015 under Coach Nick Saban. Your Editor felt Coker’s presentation was refreshingly candid, honest, humorous, and extremely sincere, lots of experiences in a short time.
He graduated from St. Paul’s in Mobile, and detailed his quest for a college scholarship. His Father was also present and added comments to Jake’s well-received remarks. We might add his wife was also present and it was announced they are expecting after year’s end. Knee and shoulder injuries riddled his playing career and cut short his pro career with the Arizona Cardinals. He now works for a Mobile bank.
He told numerous stories about FSU and Alabama, how so many things were the same at each (the FSU food wasn’t the best), and the mental toughness needed to excel. “Saban means a lot to me,” Jake said, and related some emotional moments during his career that helped him and the Tide win in 2015 after an early loss to Ole Miss. Elected Team Captain that year, he said the season was “what I always wanted to do.” Well Done, Jake Coker!!
The 50/50 was drawn and awarded and adjournment was at 8:27pm.
By: Bill Tunnell