"Hail Mary" (1922, 1972, 1974, 1975)

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Mon Jan 1 18:46:57 UTC 2007

Barry's been doing work like this for years. Thanks to the Internet, he's finally got a chance of getting some credit for it from others besides us. I hope they notice.

  Keep up the good work, Barry !


Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:
  ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender: American Dialect Society
Poster: Bapopik at AOL.COM
Subject: "Hail Mary" (1922, 1972, 1974, 1975)

Thanks for the kinds words about my website. Happy New Year to all.
My Dallas Cowboys really suck, losing at home to the worst team in football=20=
after previously getting blown out twice at home, to New Orleans and =20
Philadelphia. They laid an egg on Christmas and then repeated it with anothe=
r on New=20
Year's Eve.
Here's a Texas "Hail Mary" entry with some new information about a 1922 =20
Notre Dame game.
Hail Mary (1975 Roger Staubach pass)
The famous =E2=80=9CHail Mary=E2=80=9D pass was Dallas Cowboys quarterback R=
oger Staubach=E2=80=99s =20
throw to wide receiver Drew Pearson in a December 28, 1975 football game=20
against the Minnesota Vikings. The Cowboys had been losing 14-10, but that=20
last-second =E2=80=9CHail Mary=E2=80=9D pass play helped them to a 17-14 vi=
ctory. A football =E2=80=9CHail=20
Mary=E2=80=9D play is any last-second, long-shot, low-odds play, a =E2=80=
=9Cprayer=E2=80=9D that is=20
sometimes answered.=20

It=E2=80=99s not generally known, but Roger Staubach was quoted using the=20=
=E2=80=9CHail Mary
=E2=80=9D football terminology in 1972 and 1974. Also, Notre Dame has a =20=
=E2=80=9CHail Mary=E2=80=9D=20
tradition that began in a 1922 football game against Georgia Tech. =20

_Photo Gallery of Great Moments_=20
(http://www.ffbookmarks.com/photo_gallery_of_great_moments.htm) =20
NFC Divisional Playoff Game, Cowboys versus Vikings, December 28, 1975,=20
Metropolitan Stadium, Bloomington, MN =20
With less than two minutes to play and trailing 14-10 the Cowboys took over=20=
possession of the ball on their own 9-yard line. QB Roger Staubach led the=20=
Cowboys attack by hitting WR Drew Pearson on five different passes including=
a =20
clutch 22-yard forth down conversion at the 50-yard line. On second down, =20
and only 36 seconds remaining, Staubach threw a desperation pass to WR Pears=
on =20
who was being covered by CB Nate Wright. The pass was a bit under thrown =20
and there was some contact between Pearson and Wright. Wright fell to the =20
ground, Pearson bobbled the ball on the five-yard line. He eventually was =20=
to pin the ball against his right hip to gain possession of the ball. He t=
strolled into the endzone for the winning touchdown. QB Roger Staubach, in=
a post-game interview said =E2=80=9CIt was a Hail Mary pass.=E2=80=9D A moni=
ker that would=20
forever stick describing this particular catch and created a new lexicon fo=
all similar pass plays to follow. Sadly, Vikings QB Fran Tarkenton=E2=80=
=99s father=20
died of a heart attack while watching the game. His name was Dallas.. =20

_Wikipedia: Hail Mary pass_ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hail_Mary_pass) =20
A Hail Mary pass or Hail Mary play in American football is a forward pass=20
made in desperation, with only a very small chance of success. The typical=20=
Mary is a very long forward heave thrown at or near the end of a half where=
there is no realistic possibility for any other play to work, though the mo=
famous were thrown at the end of a game. The phrase derives from the name o=
a prominent Roman Catholic prayer to the Virgin Mary. The success of this=20
play is unlikely due to the general inaccuracy of the pass.=20

(Oxford English Dictionary)=20
Hail Mary, phr. and n.=20
Chiefly N. Amer. Sport. A desperate play or manoeuvre having a very low=20
likelihood of success; (Amer. Football) a long pass thrown into or near the=
zone by a losing team as time is running out. Chiefly attrib.=20
1972 Sporting News 15 Jan. 8/2, I asked if he really saw Pat or if he was=20
throwing it away. He [sc. Roger Staubach] said, =E2=80=98Let=E2=80=99s just=
call it my Hail=20
Mary Play.=E2=80=99=20

10 January 1932, Portsmouth (OH) Times, pg. 12, col. 2:=20
=E2=80=9CHail Mary=E2=80=9D=20
Play Wins=20
Football Game=20

NEW YORK, Jan. 9=E2=80=94Gus Welch retained the =E2=80=9CBrown Derby=E2=80=
=9D at the annual banquet=20
of the American Football Coaches=E2=80=99 association, but Jim (Sleepy) Cro=
wley, one=20
of the Four Horsemen of Notre Dame and now a coach at Michigan State,=20
brought down the hall with this one: =20

=E2=80=9CIn 1922 Notre Dame had nine sophomores on the team that went to Atl=
anta to=20
play Georgia Tech,=E2=80=9D Crowley related. =E2=80=9CIn the first half Tech=
got a field goal=20
and things looked pretty dark for us. In the third period Layden punted to=20
Red Barron, who muffed. We recovered on the 20-yard line and tried three pl=
in vain. It was fourth down.=20

=E2=80=9CIt so happened that we had a Presbyterian on the team. He stopped=20=
play and=20
said to us, =E2=80=98Boys, let=E2=80=99s have a Hail Mary.=E2=80=99 Well, w=
e prayed, and Layden soon=20
went over for a touchdown.=20

=E2=80=9CBelieve it or not, the formula was repeated. Again Layden kicked,=20=
Barron fumbled, again we tried three plays in vain. =E2=80=98Let=E2=80=99s=20=
have another Hail=20
Mary,=E2=80=99 said the Presbyterian. Well, again Layden went over for a to=

=E2=80=9CAfter the game I discussed the strange series of events with our=20
Presbyterian. =E2=80=98Say, that Hail Mary is the best play we=E2=80=99ve g=
ot,=E2=80=99 he exclaimed.=E2=80=9D=20

20 December 1939, Charleston (WV) , pg. 18, col. 4:=20
Crowley related humorous slants on...the 1922 game with Georgia Tech won by=
Notre Dame 14-3 on what the Presbyterian quarterback said was due to his=20=
hail Mary=E2=80=9D play.=20

20 December 1965, Ironwood (MI) Daily Globe, pg. 10, col. 4:=20
Tom Flynn called it his =E2=80=9CHail Mary shot=E2=80=9D and here=E2=80=99s=
how he described it: =E2=80=9C
I just grabbed it and threw it,=E2=80=9D said the Marquette captain whose s=
hot in the=20
final two seconds gave Marquette a 75-74 basketball victory over Washington=
Saturday night and the Milwaukee Classic championship.=20

15 January 1972, Sporting News, pg. 8, col. 2:=20
Hardin Recalls Feat=20
His former Navy coach, Wayne Hardin, recalled recently: =E2=80=9CI remember=
a game=20
at Michigan. We were on the 20 and Roger rolled right and got hammered in.=20=
was bobbing and weaving and kept retreating, back to the 30. He was=20
surrounded and upended.=20

=E2=80=9CHe was parallel to the ground, his feet in mid-air and he threw a=20=
pass to=20
Pat Donnelly, who made a one-yard gain. Afterward, I asked if he really sa=
Pat or if he was throwing it away.=20

=E2=80=9CHe said, =E2=80=98Let=E2=80=99s just call it my Hail Mary Play.=E2=
=80=99=E2=80=9D =20

So the Cowboys have got Staubach and his =E2=80=9CHail Mary=E2=80=9D plays,=20=
they=E2=80=99ve got =20
running backs like Duane Thomas and Calvin Hill, they=E2=80=99ve got top rec=
eivers, a =20
talented offensive line and the Doomsday Defense.=20

29 August 1974, Gettysburg (PA) Compiler, pg. 14, col. 7:=20
Everyone is back from the team that won the National Conference West before=
losing at Dallas, 27-16, in the playoffs on what Cowboys=E2=80=99 quarterba=
ck Roger=20
Staubach calls =E2=80=9Ca couple of Hail Mary pass plays.=E2=80=9D=20

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