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31 Jan 2017

The Year in Quotes: 1988

compiled by Jeremy Snyder

THE LASTING LEGACY OF THE 1988 SEASON

"What you do is jump-jump (pause) jump-jump. Then you also spin your index finger in the air, swivel your hips and holler, 'Woo. Woo. Woo.'"

-- Future insurance spokesman Ickey Woods (Baltimore Sun).

STAND IN THE PLACE WHERE YOU WORK, NOW FACE WEST

"Hey, that's John Candy over there."

-- Joe Montana, to teammates in the huddle before the game-winning drive of Super Bowl XXIII.

CALL A WAAAMBULANCE

"Well … yeah, we were hurt, and I think Cincinnati's hurry-up offense was hurt too."

-- Seahawks coach Chuck Knox on his defensive tackles' convenient injuries before six separate passing downs during the divisional loss to the Bengals. (Spokane Chronicle)

"We will protect ourselves. We wouldn't fake an injury. Someone might get hurt, though."

-- Bills coach Marv Levy, the Bengals' upcoming opponent, on facing the no-huddle in the AFC Championship Game. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

SOMEBODY'S GOING TO BE UNPOPULAR WITH THE CHICAGO POLICE DEPARTMENT

"We have a police escort, and we're going to go down, drive around Soldier Field a couple of times and honk our horns so everybody knows we're not trying to sneak into town."

-- Eagles coach Buddy Ryan before the divisional game against the Bears. (Reading Eagle)

EVERYBODY'S TALKING ABOUT THE STORMY WEATHER

"I felt like I was on another planet."

-- CBS producer David Michaels, after a localized fog descended on Soldier Field late in the first half of the divisional playoff game between the Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles.

"I can't see anything. We got a TV but we still can't see what's going on."

-- Unnamed Bears fan watching from the stands.

"At no time could I see less than 50 yards. I could see both goal posts."

-- Referee Jim Tunney.

"That ref ought to go to the Hall of Fame if he could see both posts."

-- Bears kicker Kevin Butler.

"We couldn't see anything -- absolutely nothing."

-- Verne Lundquist, doing play-by-play for CBS.

"I guess that's the difference between announcers and referees. We have such great eyesight that enables us to do our jobs."

-- Tunney.

"It looked like a regular game to me. Everything was a big fog."

-- Oft-concussed Bears quarterback Jim McMahon (Chicago Tribune, Gainesville Sun, Philadelphia Inquirer).

WELL, THIS EXPLAINS ONE OF THE PLAYOFF LOSSES

"Every player thought he reacted strangely during and after the Houston [wild card] game. He didn't argue any of those bad calls. After the game, he talked about playing golf."

-- Anonymous player, on Marty Schottenheimer's behavior two days before he resigned as Browns coach (Chicago Tribune).

NO ONE WANTS TO WATCH PRESEASON

"I hear Elvis is living now in Michigan or Minnesota. Well, we'd like him to come and be on our bench. I don't care how much weight he's gained."

-- Oilers coach Jerry Glanville, who left a ticket for Elvis Presley before an exhibition game in Memphis. Elvis hadn't gained an ounce in 11 years. (Lodi News-Journal)

FOOTBALL INSIGHT FROM LUDMILLA DRAGO

"Mark called me on his car phone. I was in L.A. and he tried to explain to me what a quarterback is. I thought this was insanity. Forty helmeted men trying to reach that little pigskin ball. How dumb.''

-- Brigitte Nielsen, the girlfriend of Jets defensive end Mark Gastineau, giving her thoughts on football. Gastineau, leading the AFC in sacks through six weeks, retired three days after this article was published. (New York Times)

WHEN ALL OF MY DREAMS ARE A HEARTBEAT AWAY

"Oh, my God, we've got 16 seconds. Oh, my God, we've got 12 seconds. Oh my God, we've got no seconds. Oh, my God, we've lost."

-- Bucs defensive end Ron Holmes's sideline thoughts while watching his teammates fail to get a field goal off at the end of a 14-13 loss to the Vikings. (Sarasota Herald-Tribune)

AMERICA'S TEAM

"When I heard what happened, I put in a call to his agent, who is still in Seoul, with the purpose of telling him that if he were to be suspended for two years from track, that we were interested in looking at him and trying him out as a football player."

-- Cowboys vice president Gil Brandt, two days after Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson had his 100-meter gold medal stripped for testing positive for stanozolol. The NFL did not penalize players for steroid usage until the 1989 season (Sarasota Morning Tribune).

I DON'T NEED PERMISSION / MAKE MY OWN DECISIONS

"This is my life they're f---ing with."

-- Al Davis, threatening to fire two assistant coaches after a Week 5 blowout against the Bengals (Los Angeles Times)

THINKING OF A MASTER PLAN

"[I'm going to] start dropping a few balls on the carpet."

-- Chiefs running back Paul Palmer, explaining on the team bus how he would get his coaches fired. Palmer was suspended indefinitely but reinstated after one game. (Gainesville Sun)

IRONICALLY, FRANK GANSZ'S FIRING WAS VERY EXPECTED

"Everybody's standing around and listening to Frank talk. In the middle of a speech, he would slap his hands and hit his chest real quick -- slap, boom! -- and pretend to shoot you with a gun. 'Expect the unexpected,' he'd yell."

-- Bills defensive end Art Still, recalling his former Chiefs coach's first team meeting. Gansz went 8-22-1 in two seasons (Schnectady Gazette).

WISDOM COMES TO US WHEN IT NO LONGER CAN DO ANY GOOD

"I should have known better. But I didn't have time to analyze."

-- Chargers running back Tim Spencer, flagged for pushing the ballcarrier into the end zone. (Los Angeles Times)

CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE AND NOT SURRENDERING

"My idea was to get that 1 yard. It turned out to be the longest yard."

-- Bills running back Ronnie Harmon, who reversed field twice during a fourth-and-1 carry against the Bears. The play lost 24 yards.

IF YOU'VE EVER PLAYED AS THE COLTS IN THE ORIGINAL TECMO BOWL, YOU UNDERSTAND WHY THEY'D RUN THE WISHBONE

"I talked to (former University of Texas coach) Darrell Royal on Monday and told him to look in. He said, 'Meyer, you don't have the guts to run it.' I said, 'You watch, Darrell.'"

-- Colts coach Ron Meyer, who incorporated wishbone and option elements into his offense after multiple quarterbacks were injured or ineffective (Chicago Tribune).

IT DON'T MAKE NO DIFFERENCE TO ME

"I had the conviction to do it. If it didn't work out, I would still have felt it was the right move. Damn the torpedoes; full speed ahead."

-- Patriots coach Raymond Berry, on benching Doug Flutie for Tony Eason despite Flutie's 6-3 record as starter (Lewiston Journal).

IS $18,000 PER KILO A GOOD DEAL? ASKING FOR A FRIEND

"The coke is going to be for Mark Duper."

-- Alleged 1986 conversation between Miami drug trafficker Nelson Aguilar and his driver. Duper was suspended for 30 days in 1988 for failing a drug test (Sports Illustrated).

I AM THE GREATEST SWORDSMAN THAT EVER LIVED

"You know, that little dwarf should learn one thing. He is not in my caliber. If Greg Bell came here or if I went back to the Rams, he would sit on the bench behind me the rest of his career."

-- Eric Dickerson, still bitter one year after being traded to the Colts. (Los Angeles Times)

IN THE END, THE GIANTS TRIUMPHED BY KICKING AN OBLONG BALL MADE OF PIGSKIN THROUGH A BIG 'H'

"The most courageous game I've ever seen."

-- Giants defensive coordinator Bill Belichick on Lawrence Taylor's three-sack, seven-tackle performance against the Saints. Taylor played the entire game with his right arm in a harness. (AP)

TO BE AN HC IS WHAT I CHOOSE-A

"I know this: I'm not a loser. I've never been a loser. And I don't plan on being a loser."

-- Dan Reeves, after the Broncos were eliminated from playoff contention. (Bangor Daily News)

WHAT DO YOU GET FOR THE MAN WHO WOULD BE CUT TWO DAYS LATER?

"I knew Max Zendejas wouldn't let us down. He is a true Redskin. I almost sent him a Christmas gift this year and I think I still will."

-- Washington defensive end Dexter Manley, after the Packers missed a 24-yard field goal that would have tied the game. Zendejas played nine games with the 1986 Redskins and missed five extra points (Reading Eagle).

ALS NIKO NOGA EINES MORGENS AUS UNRUHIGEN TRÄUMEN ERWACHTE, FAND ER SICH IN SEINEM BETT ZU EINEM UNGEHEUEREN SCHLANGE VERWANDELT

"The only thing I'm afraid of is if I wake up some morning and I have no arms or legs."

-- Phoenix Cardinals linebacker Niko Noga, shrugging off threats from organized crime resulting from an offseason scuffle in a Honolulu disco (Allegheny Times)

THE DOLPHINS' SCORER WAS SIMILARLY CONFUSED EVERY WEEK AND WE HATE HIM FOR IT

"We wanted a safe little play and we just wanted to get the first down. We really didn't think there was anything risky about it. I thought we were on the 30-yard line."

-- Tom Landry, after Steve Pelluer intentionally grounded the Cowboys out of field goal range on third-and-2 from the 23. A field goal would have clinched the game. (AP)

DUNGY'S REPLACEMENT? ROD RUST

"I think we had to do something defensively and we had to be able to attract people, good people … and I didn't want to be restricted to a position coach. I wanted to see what could happen, and I don't think Tony was comfortable with that, that's all."

-- Steelers coach Chuck Noll, following defensive coordinator Tony Dungy's resignation after Dungy refused to accept a demotion. The 1988 Steelers allowed more points and yards than any other team in the league (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).

MY OLD MAN'S GOT A PROBLEM

"It's pretty tough when little kids come up to you and say, 'My dad told me to ask you, is so-and-so going to be drunk on Sunday?'"

-- Minnesota running back Darrin Nelson. Eleven Vikings had been arrested for alcohol-related crimes in the past year-plus (Eugene Register-Guard).

BUGS BUNNY COULD HAVE DONE IT

"On the Lion punt near the end of the first quarter, we have McConkey punting to McConkey. That didn't happen. Arnold was the Lion punter."

-- Correction in the Lions-Giants gamebook.

THIS IS THE TITLETOWN THAT THEY FORGOT TO CLOSE DOWN

"My day consisted of going to practice, coming home and going to sleep."

-- Former Packers wide receiver Frankie Neal, bemoaning the non-existent Green Bay nightlife (Milwaukee Journal).

"I'm carrying a bomb and a gun and I don't care what happens."

-- Unidentified former Packer to Green Bay airport security, shortly after final cutdowns (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).

AT RUNNING BACK, NUMBER 41, BILLY COLE

"They were wearing bulletproof vests and they had guns of their own."

-- Saints guard Brad Edelman following a 45-3 loss to the Vikings (Spokane Chronicle).

THE DEVIL IS PICK-SIX

"My first thought was it was complete. My next thought was expletive."

-- Falcons quarterback Hugh Millen after throwing a game-losing interception against the Giants (Schenectady Gazette).

NO RAGE-QUITTING, PLEASE

"BE A GOOD SPORT. If you want to play realistic football, you should restrain yourself from exploiting unrealistic things that the computer player cannot react to. And against a human opponent, restrict the use of plays that work too well, or establish guidelines. For example, a realistic halfback pass should only be diagrammed using the 'PB' position for the running back who is going to throw the pass. Real teams have rules about what numbers different types of players can wear and exchange game films prior to the contest. You could allow your opponent to review your playbook before the game.

"JUST WIN, BABY. Or, if you prefer to win at all costs, including friendship, here are some suggestions. Use the editor to send the QB in motion. Put extra receivers on the line of scrimmage. Send blockers downfield on passes. Change a wide receiver's position to tight end. Give your defensive backs numbers in the 50s. Give your HB a pass task so the defense reads pass. The editor and computer player are not sophisticated enough to prevent or defend this sort of thing, but they are not realistic and will render the game less challenging."

-- From the manual for the original Apple II John Madden Football.

FRIENDS TO THE END

"We were eating pork chops, and apparently I didn't chew it very well."

-- Buddy Ryan, who nearly choked to death during a December dinner with his assistants (Reading Eagle).

"I know one thing. It wasn't a Ditka's pork chop, because those things are so tender you could never choke on one."

-- Mike Ditka, back to his usual self after suffering a heart attack a month earlier (Reading Eagle)

Posted by: Guest on 31 Jan 2017

12 comments, Last at 06 Feb 2017, 12:32am by LionInAZ

Comments

1
by Bright Blue Shorts :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 7:23am

Brilliant - lot of great names from the past in there. I don't know how you dug all the quotes up but ... good job!

2
by PatsFan :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 9:56am

This. Is. Brilliance!

3
by drobviousso :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 12:28pm

Oh I love this. I was an innocent little 8 year old Eagles fan that year, and I didn't understand half the $*|+ Buddy Ryan was saying. But God did we love him in our family.

4
by mathesond :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 1:31pm

Great quotes, and I appreciated the Teenage Riot reference

5
by Noah Arkadia :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 2:57pm

Really cool, gives you the flavor the time.

6
by t.d. :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 5:01pm

C'mon, man, Rick Astley's non-ironically popular now (because he's been such a sport about everything)

11
by Bright Blue Shorts :: Thu, 02/02/2017 - 4:28am

I saw Rick Astley play live last summer at a Retro's 80s music festival.

Tiffany was there as well and she's another dim and distant memory from 1988!

7
by RobotBoy :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 7:20pm

Google translator aced it: 'AS NIKO NOGA OF A MORNING FROM INCORPORATE DREAMS, HE WAS IN HIS BED TO A NECESSARY SNAKE.'

8
by RobotBoy :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 7:25pm

Kafka would undoubtedly be a Browns fan.

9
by big10freak :: Tue, 01/31/2017 - 8:44pm

Green Bay has not changed. Only now people say its quaint

12
by LionInAZ :: Mon, 02/06/2017 - 12:32am

Or, as some would say, the 'real America'.

10
by CHIP72 :: Thu, 02/02/2017 - 2:22am

Frank Gansz - now there's a name that's a blast from the past. Though I'm not a Chiefs fan, I remember how he became the KC head coach. In 1986 the Chiefs had a strange team, one that was considered below average on both offense and defense. Despite those shortcomings, the Chiefs went 10-6 and made the playoffs, mainly because they made a whole bunch of big plays on special teams (I think primarily in the return game). Gansz was the KC special teams coach that year, and became their head coach in 1987 after the organization fired John Mackovic (despite the 10-6 record). The Chiefs surprising success was notable; it was the first time they made the playoffs in 15 years. They even got the opportunity to play a team that had lost 5 straight games to close out the season (Jets) in the wild-card game, albeit on the road, but the Jets totally outclassed Kansas City, beating the Chiefs 35-15. The Chiefs wouldn't start having sustained success until 3 years later when Marty Schottenheimer became the head coach after leaving the Browns.