There were many great football rivalries in the Wyoming Valley over the past 85 years.
Although the competitions were all intense, one pairing stands out above all others – the GAR-Meyers contest.
They used to say of the GAR-Meyers Game, “throw the records out the window.” The win would be determined by the team that wanted it the most.
We battled each other in a contest of total commitment and sacrifice. There could only be one victor. The whole season came down to one game. The crowd swelled to 7,000 to 8,000 people.
But why, what made this challenge so passionate and so fierce among all others?
We played hard, but fair, harassing and taunting each other by first name. There were no trophies, no awards and no championships to be won nor lost. The contest was all about school pride and earning of the respect of the opposing player over you, your friend.
Winning the GAR-Meyers game meant bragging rights for at least one year. Losing was the most horrible fate imaginable, especially if you were a senior.
The GAR and Meyers rivalry was a remarkable time in the lives of not only the players and coaches that participated, but the mothers, the fathers, the sisters, the brothers, the neighbors and the fans. We were part of something truly wonderful, truly magical and truly historic.
I will miss it terribly, but there is one thing no one can ever take from us, the memories of our youth and of days gone by.
Oh, and the fact that in my senior year, 1976, we kicked Meyers’ butt, 28-0
Formerly No. 33 for GAR