This post is sponsored by EA Sports NCAA Football 2011.
Just like yesterday's post about favorite players couldn't possibly narrow it down to just one, picking a most memorable moment is too tall a task for me. So since it's Friday, let's drop this Random Ten style, shall we? These are mostly in no particular order, but when you get down to the top three...well, they're there for a reason.
#10 - Kitchens to Riddle
Always one of my favorite Iron Bowl memories, I couldn't help but think about this play last year when we were driving down the field. As much as I love beating the boogs senseless from first snap to last, watching them crumble after a last second plunge of the dagger just has a shameful thrill that no bludgeoning could ever match. Plus, Freddie Kitchens. He looked like your friend's middle aged dad even in college.
#9 - The Catch
I can still remember the anger at being down 21-10 at the half and cursing when Croyle lofted that pass up just knowing it was a stupid desperation heave on 4th down, and then jumping up off the couch and screaming at the top of my lungs "HE CAUGHT IT HE CAUGHT IT" and cursing more, but in a good way, and then again in a bad way when the refs kept talking about it and I just knew they were going to rule it incomplete. Thankfully I was wrong then, too. I know Prothro's legacy is built on only a handful of plays and there's no telling what might have happened had he played out his career, but that will always go down as one of the most spectacular plays I have ever seen.
Honorable mention: D.J. Hall's Prothro impersonation at Tennessee the following year. Unfortunately for Hall, since we lost no one cares.
#8 - The Kick
The only play on here that I didn't actually witness. I've told this story before, but I'll do it again for any that missed it. We were in Tampa visiting my Grandfather for Thanksgiving and my Mom, being the wonderful mother that she is, agreed to take 7 year old me to the hotel's swimming pool while my dad and brothers watched the game. The balcony to our room was right above the pool and they would shout out updates to mom as the game went on. The updates stopped and things were really quiet up there, so Mom assumed the worst. I will never forget earing those cheers of pure joy coming from that hotel room, and that's how we found out Alabama had won the '85 Iron Bowl.
#7 - Rocky Stop
One of those games that took at least a week off of my life. Seeing that ball come flying when Harper laid the hit was one of the most beautiful sights of my life.
#6 - Reggie Grimes Gets a Big Man TD
When most people think of that game the first play they think about is Freddie Milons lining up at QB and going 77 yards for a TD. It was a great play, no doubt, but if you'll recall on the ensuing kickoff we got flagged for a personal foul and gave Florida the ball close to mid field. Up only 22-7 and with over 11 minutes to go I was still nervous, but when Grimes picked that ball out of the air (and looking back, man what a heads up play) and started for the end zone I just about wet myself. Every time Jesse Palmer is on ESPN I think of this play and smile.
#5 - The Destruction of Clemson
Ok, I don't know if you can call a whole game a memorable moment, but I'll remember this game 'til the day I die. I had some friends over to watch and even though I was quietly optimistic none of us knew what was about to go down. Watching us just flat dominate a team most said we couldn't play with was one of the most satisfying things I have ever experienced, and by the end of the game we were all just laughing at every play from glee. I even remember talking to an Auburn fan friend about it the next day and saying "that was a Nick Saban team that you saw last night," and all he could do was agree.
#4 - George Teague High Stepping Into the End Zone (2:40 mark)
WARNING: Complete and Total Soundtrack FAIL
Understandably most people think of The Strip when they think of Teague, but the high stepping pick six just looked so cool it has always stuck with me.
Honorable Mention: I'm coming to see you, 'lizbeth! (2:15 mark)
#3 - Marcell Dareus Gets a Big Man TD
Even though I know I'll remember that TD for the rest of my life because it was an awesome play, the play itself isn't what get it on the list. It makes it this high because kleph called me right at the start of the half and we were both squealing about it like a couple of 12 year old girls that just saw Twilight for the first time, and I honeslty don't remember what either one of us said and doubt we even heard the other over our own exuberance. That feeling of pure "OMG WE ARE TOTALLY GONNA WIN THE NATIONAL TITLE TONIGHT" faded but quick after those couple of Texas TDs, but at the time....man.
Honorable Mention: Eryk Anders and Courtney Upshaw seal the deal. When the ball came loose I jumped from the couch screaming and the dog, who had been slumbering peacefully beside me, also jumped up and began barking. I've raised her right.
#2 - Collette Connell Welcomes Nick Saban to Tuscaloosa
I'm sure there were plenty of Crimson Country Club types that were embarrassed through and through by the circus surrounding Nick Saban's arrival, but redneck pickup alum me found it hysterical and would have probably been out there himself if he hadn't been at work. Besides, the giddy joy of having one of the greatest football minds in the country for reals headed to Alabama had me walking on air, and Nico will back me up on that since he was getting "Dude, Nick Saban IS OUR COACH" text messages at least twice a day for weeks afterward.
#1 - Thomas Rayam Saves the Day
I feel like I've talked about this play a ton lately, but it truly is the most memorable moment of my fandom so it's here at #1. So now it's y'all's turn, what are your top moments as a Tide fan?