“If you do then how would you explain, I’m 10 years removed her the environments in my veins!” Shawn Corey Carter
“Wassup up Doak Boy?”
“Man, you remember that night at The Doak?”
“Man, you ain’t no Doak Boy.”
“See, that’s a Doak Boy.”
What is a Doak Boy?
In essence, a former Nole is a Doak Boy. In theory.
Really, it’s a saying that embodies everyone who played under Bobby Bowden and I’m sure we’ll make some exceptions as time goes on.
There’s a few things that differentiate a Doak Boy from a Nole. This is no knock to any of the youngins, Jits, or jitterbugs as we call them in Florida, but Doak Boyz establishes a culture from seemingly nothing. In fact, everything they have is because the trailblazers before made it possible by doing it better than everyone else with less. It’s also something that can tie multiple generations together by having something they can all relate too.
That’s how cultures are established.
Every Doak Boy I talk to has a Mat Drills story. It was our yearly bonding ritual. Five AM inside the gym and straight getting after it. I concede that mats pre-2001 were harder than post-2001, but like I told a Doak Legend, Pat Carter, I didn’t see no former Noles lining up to come back and do the easier version.
At any reunion, any time we get together or whenever we talk about playing under Bowden, you can bet we will talk about mats. We talked about it when we played. Ain’t nobody talk about fourth quarter drills or whatever that was.
We might open it back up to this group because “The Chase” had similarities.
Bobby Bowden was the obvious tie. Thirty-plus years and the same chief. Of course we have stories or Bowden-ism that are similar.
I remember an event in Jacksonville during his last bowl game where Noles from throughout the years legit had the same stories to share. It was a connector.
When Bobby left, it kind of killed the name based on how distant Jimbo Fisher was from the previous traditions. I’m not saying he was wrong for that, but he turned away some things that might not have been necessary.
Willie Taggart immediately brought a lot of those things back. Not just Bobby Bowden.
Mickey Andrews, Jim Gladden, Jimmy Higgins, Billy Sexton, Chuck Amato, Dave Van Halanger. Man these guys were characters.
You heard the stories transferred from other players about coaches who’d been gone before they even got there. That’s an oral history unlike no other.
Ask a Doak Boy about Jimmy Higgins, or Jimmy Jam as we called him. You’ll immediately get an impersonation of his voice and coaching style. Ask about Chuck Amato and they’ll tell you he had guys convinced he was mob affiliated, from what they say, I’m not sure he isn’t lol.
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