Coach Danny Ford and Coach Pat Dye trading cattle in 1992
It was December 1992 and I was a freshman at Clemson. I was hired to work in athletics as a student. My job was to help the video services department capture football practice so the coaches could grade and prepare for each game. At the time, the video services department worked mainly for football, our office was in the old ticket office inside Jervey Athletics.
In 1992, Clemson Football went 5-6 and video services used that December to begin helping Clemson Basketball with video analysis. We had lots of time on our hands since we did not go to a bowl. My boss at the time was John Ballenger (we all called him JB). He called me after class and asked if I had my still camera in my dorm room. He drove to pick me up and we headed to Coach Ford’s farm in Pendleton.
I grew up with Coach Ford and his family, went to Daniel High School with his daughters Jennifer and Ashley. We all went to church together, so I knew it was a treat to go to Coach Ford’s farm. Mrs. Ford had called JB to see if we could come take a special picture. When I arrived at Coach Ford’s farm, there was a gentleman chatting with him; it was my understanding they were trading cattle.
As we walked up Coach Pat Dye introduced himself and I was in amazement. Not too many times do you get to meet such a legend from Auburn Football. I know Coach Ford played at Alabama but was interesting to see that he had such a great relationship with Coach Dye. Coach Ford asked if I could take a picture of the two of them. I have been looking for this picture for the last five years.
This was taken on a Canon T50 SLR camera, which was 35mm. At the time, I did not save the negatives from this image, so I was hoping one day this image would reemerge. While moving my office, I found this image in a pile of old images that used to be in the safety deposit box. As I was thumbing through the images, I found this one. This is one of my favorite images I have captured.
I have so much respect for Coach Ford, not because he was a great football coach; but because he is a good man. I hope one day I will be able to get both Coach Ford and Coach Dye to autograph this image and maybe let me take another one! #GoTigers #Canon