"They Don't Call it Armball"

August 29, 2020

"They Don't Call it Armball" 

By Chris Warner, author of over 20 books. chriswarnerauthor.com

August 29, 2020 



This blog is different. It consists of some of my favorite quotes from players, coaches and observers of the nation's toughest athletic conference. 

Brief, brilliant bursts of life from those who have shaped and forged the winning legacy that is Southeastern Conference Football.

Which is now only a month away.


SEC Sports Quotes Compendium

In alphabetical order, so as not to offend:


"The first thing I do is get a kicker.  If it wasn't important, they'd call it armball."

-Bear Bryant

"He literally knocked the door down.  I mean right off the hinges.  A policeman came in and asked who knocked the door down, and Coach Bryant said, 'I did.' The cop just said, 'Okay' and walked away."

-Jerry Duncan, describing an irate Paul Bryant after a 7-7 tie with Tennessee

"He can take his and beat yours, and yours and beat his."

-Bum Phillips, on Paul "Bear" Bryant


"Sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel is a runaway train."

- Lou Holtz

"Sure, I'd miss him, too."

-Frank Broyles, Arkansas athletic director, when asked if he would still like his football coach, Ken Hatfield, if his team went .500 

"No, but you can see it from here."

-Lou Holtz, when asked if Arkansas was located at the end of the world


"Successful coaches are few and far between, it's a wonder that they command salaries without limit."

-John Heisman

"Hindsight is 50-50."

- Pat Dye

"Honey I know it's our anniversary.  However, I wasn't planning on spending that much." 

-Pat Dye, on his wife's request for a divorce


"Call me arrogant, cocky, crybaby, whiner or whatever you want to call me--at least they're not calling us losers anymore."

- Steve Spurrier

"Blindfolded, with his back to the wall, with his hands tied behind him, Steve Spurrier would be a two-point favorite at his own execution

-Richard Ensberger

"I want my players to think as positively as the 85-year-old man who married a 25-year old woman and bought a five-bedroom home next to the elementary school."

-Charley Pell


"To err is human, to forgive divine. But to forgive a football coach is unheard of." 

-Vince Dooley

"If you train hard, you'll not only be hard, you'll be hard to beat."

-Herschel Walker

"Winners have the will to prepare."

-Vince Dooley


"Potential is a French word that means you ain't done nothing yet."

- Jeff Van Note

"You are a tall one, aren't you?"

-Prince Charles of Wales, upon greeting the 6'-6" Art Still after the Wildcats defeated the Georgia Bulldogs, 33-0 in October, 1977

"In the South, college football isn't just a game.  It's who we are."

-Bill Curry


"How do you make a better athlete? A bigger, stronger, faster athlete...is a better athlete."

- Jerry Simmons

"You have to play sports like there's a knife to your throat."

- Skip Bertman

"My God, my God, what will I do?  Who will look after my darling, LSU?"

-Huey Pierce Long

Mississippi State

"Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity."

-Darrell Royal

"Our young men are going to go to class, they are going to make their grades and they are going to eventually play championship football."

-Sylvester Croom


"As long as a person doesn't admit he is defeated, he is not defeated--he is just a little behind and isn't through fighting."

-Darrell Royal


"I don't ever discuss the discipline things, although I'm very consistent with what I do."

-Gary Pinkel

"No one comes into our house and pushes us around."

-Dan Devine

Ole Miss

"I'd do anything for Ole Miss." 

-Johnny Vaught

'I miss football so much--heck, I even miss the interceptions."

-Archie Manning

"Discipline with team togetherness wins football games."

-Johnny Vaught

South Carolina

"One day Derek will either be filling NFL stadiums--or sweeping them up."

-Lou Holtz on Gamecock running back Derek Watson

"We have the greatest fans in the world.  We raise more money per win than any school in America."

-Lou Holtz 

"I want to rush for 1,000 or 1,500 yards, whichever comes first."

-George Rogers


"Class is when they run you out of town, you look like you're leading a parade."

-Bill Battle

"Knock a man down, and if you can't, step aside and let me through."

-Gene McEver

"Taking the shortest distance to the ball carrier, and arriving in bad humor."

-Bowden Wyatt

Texas A&M 

"Those who point fingers have the most to hide."

-Jackie Sherrill

"One bad choice in life can derail you.  You have to make good decisions."

-Jimbo Fisher

"It's a lot harder to win in this conference (the SEC) than it is in other conferences."

-Jackie Sherrill


"Only the gamefish swims upstream."

-Grantland Rice

"All wars are planned by old men in council rooms apart."

-Grantland Rice

"The drama of sport is a big part of the drama of life, and the scope of this drama is endless."

-Grantland Rice


*SEC Sports Quotes Compendium is a compilation of two prior tomes...SEC Sports Quotes and SEC Sports Quotes II.  Find it, and Chris Warner's other books at: chriswarnerauthor.com