In this, the idyllic garden spot of
In successive seasons Estay sacked
two serious Heisman Trophy contenders. In 1970 he nailed Ole Miss' Archie
Manning in the end zone, and a year later he got
That's one of those rare When Circumatances Meet Opportunity feats.
The Sports Hall of Fame has always
seemed a barometer of just how much LSU sports means to
Yet LSU athletes almost dominate the Hall. Some of it, of course, has to do with longevity as a major power, but some also has to do with serious accomplishment. Of the 236 people inducted since 1959, 51, almost a third, are associated with LSU. The number rises, of course, with Estay and Martin. The next closest program is Tulane with 18.
The Tiger flavor began at the start
when Gaynell "Gus'' Tinsley was inducted in the Hall's first class, in 1959. For
decades Tinsley, an end, was considered the greatest Tiger football player of
them all. Bernie Moore, who coached LSU in the 30s when Tinsley starred, and was
later the commissioner of the
The greatest lineman I ever saw.'' The sports editor of the Baton Rouge Morning Advocate, a man not easily impressed, concurred, adding that for that era Tinsley was also the strongest. "Once I saw him stand flatfooted in front of (tackle) Paul Miller on the practice field,'' Montet is quoted as saying, "and raise Miller straight off the ground with one hand. I still don't believe it. Miller must have weighed about 230.''
Of course, it would be virtually impossible for any complete team to be inducted en masse, but there is one. LSU's famed five-man track team that won the 1933 NCAA track championship are all in, voted in individually in different years. The last to make it was pole vaulter Matt Gordy who was inducted in 1985. Yet Gordy was the epitome of an athlete rising to the occasion. The championship came down to him.
Think of the drama: Glenn "Slates''
Hardin had won the 440-yard dash with a meet record 47.1 seconds and set a world
record in the 220-yard low hurdles in 22.9 seconds; Jack Torrance set a world
record in the shot put with 52-10 and also placed third in the discus. Al Moreau
placed in both hurdle events and Buddy Blair was fourth in the javelin, giving
LSU a 49-47 lead over
With a vault of 14 feet 4 ¼,
But on his last attempt, Gordy jack-knifed over the crossbar to share first place with Graber, and give LSU the winning points.
Stories like that one, and Estay's, always have an audience.
The crowds will be gathering to hear them shortly.
Marty Mule' is a veteran journalist
and a former Times-Picayune sports writer based in Mandeville. Mule' will be
inducted into the