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Thomson High's 1984 title team planning to get back together

Back in 1984, Thomson was on its way to winning its third football state championship; Luther Welsh was still a rising star in Georgia high school football, and a group of extraordinary young men were just beginning to make their mark on the world.

Now, 20 years have passed, and for those involved, the events that took place back then seem like only yesterday. Many of them will have the opportunity to relive those events soon.

The star running back for Thomson during the state championship run, Jerry Mays, is organizing a reunion of sorts for his 1984 Bulldog teammates that will take place prior to the final Thomson home game against Butler on Oct. 29.

"Every time I hear it's been 20 years it seems like there's no way," said Jessie Hatcher, linebacker on the 1984 state championship team who went on to play for Clemson. "It barely feels like it's been five or 10 years, but 20 went quick."

All of the members of the championship team are invited to attend the festivities. The reunion will consist of food and fellowship in the form of tailgating before the game. Mr. Mays added that all of the cheerleaders, band, and former coaches are welcome to attend as well.

Mr. Mays, who went on to play for Georgia Tech and briefly for the San Diego Chargers, organized the reunion to allow his old teammates to catch up with each other. It will also provide a chance for them to relive their 15-0 season during that milestone year.

"I plan on being there, and I plan on seeing some of those old guys I haven't seen in several years," Mr. Hatcher said. "It'll be great to see some of those guys. That team had a lot of good people on it as well as good athletes, and I think that was probably one of the reasons we were able to do well."

Coach Welsh echoed those thoughts about his first state championship team, one that he feels is quite unique.

"It's great for them to come back because they were a great group of young people," he said. "Most of those people are really successful today, and that's the important thing to me. I'm prouder of that more so than winning the state championship."

Those associated with the 1984 championship team who are able to attend the reunion should contact Mr. Mays at 595-0349 by Oct. 22.



Web posted on Thursday, September 23, 2004


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